Thursday, September 27, 2007

Nome, not Home

It’s true! We saw this reindeer when we were up in Nome for the Pioneer Convention Sept 11-16. The man was driving right down Front Street (the main street downtown) with his window rolled down and the reindeer in the back. The reindeer was leaning over, nuzzling the driver’s face and the driver was scratching the reindeer behind the ears. It was pretty obvious that the reindeer was enjoying every minute.
This was sent to me by a neat lady who did the trip with us last week ... we're still talking about it!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007


It's been a while since I pulled out my guitar case, but I found it in good shape after I dusted it off, and it was still in tune. So I proceeded to pull up information on guitars online and some of the old learning came back to me.
My class is being taught by Hector, who is an affable Mexican fellow, and we have about a dozen students. It's really a good feeling to strum along with the group, and gives us incentive to practice. Hopefully, I will get some of the chords down pat, so I can play without stress. Remember, I lead a stress-free life
When I get a good digital song together, I'll put it on my website. I don't think a blog can handle that. Back to the books!!!!

Monday, September 24, 2007


It was one of those last minute things. A note from a friend to have a drumming and pot luck party. These are always the best kind of get-togethers, and this was no exception. One gal made caribou stew, and this critter was on the hoof less than a week ago. Delicious! Other foods were good, too, but the highlight of the evening was definitely drumming. Finally, I had a chance to use the native drum I made a few months go at the university. Great low tone.

What a nice wrap-up to a nice weekend. Football, jazz, church, gardening . . . well, I should say de-gardening, because I was busy getting winterized, taking plants inside in preparation for the 'termination dust' fast descending down the mountains to the east of town. That's Anchorage for you!

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

World Travel 101

Hostelling International has created a powerpoint program on World Travel 101, and also Women Traveling Solo. While most people recognize the word 'hostelling', it is often misused, or referred to in connection with Elderhostel. This is not the way it is - actually it is an independent organization whose mission started almost a hundred years ago, providing accommodation to travelers at a low cost. While it has expanded to a world outreach, in promoting fellowship and friendship, it remains directed to youth. In actuality, all ages are welcome and more and more seniors are traveling alone or accompanied by buddies to visit far parts of the world. This is all incorporated in the slide show presentation prepared by national. Last night I showed this to the Pioneers of Alaska, at their social meeting. I hope that I was able to dispel some of the mistaken concepts, and perhaps some will use hostels in their travels. A peripheral benefit is to have a place to put company when you run out of room in your home. Just check them into the local hostel. Anyhow, in a personal sense, I enjoyed presenting this program, because it gave me some practice in using our new projector. It usually requires an extension cord, because the laptop computer and the projector both need power, and then I have a remote to advance the slides I'm still working on. Anyhow, I felt the program was well received. I'm ready to do more 'shows' when groups need a program. It happens often.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Nome to Anchorage

The Pioneers of Alaska are a close-knit group of long-time Alaskans, whose mission is to preserve the wonderful history of Alaska. I have just returned from a visit to Nome, Alaska, which I visited for the Annual Convention we held there. I had thought it was a small town and you could hike to everywhere, but I quickly found out the 1/2 miles distance from the Nugget Inn to Pioneer Hall, down Front Street, was more like a mile in the high winds blowing in our faces. My roommate, a live-wire at 88, Jean Kaufman, talked me into the walk, leaving me with a cold, sore feet, and exhaustion. The local Pioneers had prepared well in advance for our visit, which included the usual meetings, dinners, entertainment, and sight-seeing. I have to commend these planners, as their job was not an easy one. The meetings were held in the Nome Recreation Center. Someone had knocked off the last part of the letter "m" in Nome, so it looked like "None", which was appropo in a way.

The legend on the local maps listed more churches than bars, but you couldn't prove it by me!

I'm posting these images to show you how they had decorated the walls of the Rec Center with clever sketches of the local scenes. The Board of Trade is a popular local bar, near our hotel, which we visited. Also another popular spot was the Polar Bar, which had live music. Since there were over 200 delegates there, you can believe that all the spots were well attended. Since we flew home Sunday morning, I never did see the insides of a church, nor did I find the Senior Center open in the times I went by, but there is a nice museum and library in the same building, that was like an oasis for me. The restaurants were minimal, and the only franchise was Subway, altho' I understand a Burger King was there once. The waves outside our hotel window were not formed, but just like big and choppy like in the movie, a Sudden Storm. Well, I may not have the name right, but you understand the sea was choppy.

I started out wearing heels, but they kept getting caught in grates, mud, etc., so reverted to tennie runners the rest of the week. Yes, even to the ball, but I did switch once I got inside. The band was actually quite pleasant, and they played vanilla music (C&W and Standards) that you could dance to and talk above. They also have a local, Nome River Sally, who performed in period attire, and was very good.
Jean and I did a skit, which was three parodies of songs. Mine was to the tune of YMCA, using motions pointing to the eye (I) and then P O A -Pioneers of Alaska. It was well taken, and no tomatoes were thrown.
Since writing my blog last month, I've totally neglected my webpage, but it still does exist, so hope you'll visit there, and perhaps I'll be inspired to update things. Until then, goto

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Nome, Alaska!

The feature article in the Daily News refers to the alcohol problem in Nome. I'm a very light drinker, but I do frequent cocktail lounges. That's hardly the word for what they have in Nome. You see, the neighboring villages are dry, so when the young ones (anyone younger than I am) want a drink, they have to go to Nome, the closest wet town. There are no roads of course, so they use dog teams, snow machines, or whatever transportation is available.
The reason I'm onto this subject in that I'm heading to Nome early in the morning for four days, and should have a great story to tell. My trip is to attend the Pioneers of Alaska Convention, so with a little luck, I'll get some images to share with the reader. So check back in a few days, and hear some tales. If nothing happens, I'll make some up. Okay?

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Football Season

It's been a while since I went to a football game, and I chose a good one, as it was homecoming for South High School in Anchorage. This really doesn't mean a lot since the school has only been in existence for 3 years, but they made the most of it. The football team is really first class, as is everything else about this school.
The cheerleaders are great, and the uniforms are neat and spiffy. The pre-game exercises are a dancing treat for viewing. My friends' son is playing varsity this year for South, so my cheers went for them. They're a classy bunch, out there.
They don't have any marching bands in Anchorage, but the school band did a good job from the bleachers. The half-time program had a parade of floats from the 4 classes, followed by the princesses marching thru the sabers held by the ROTC. It was a special night, and I loved every minute, even if 'my' school was blown away by South.
By the way, the good weather also ended last night. We had steady rain all day today. So I stayed home and watched Justine Henin win the US Open. What a gal!

Saturday, September 1, 2007

Labor Day Arrives!

Lazy weekend here, playing catch up. . . Watching the tennis tournament, and cheering for Andy . . . sorry that Maria lost. I never really thought about it, but today's game is the hard serve and volley ... . no one goes to the net anymore it seems. I'm an old fogie and like the old days. But styles change and we have to accept them.

I played in a golf playday yesterday, and since it was a 'team golf'' contest, you have to play by all the rules. But when you know the rules and challenge a decision, you just try to find it in the rule book when you're in a rush. It could turn ugly. . . and it did . . . I was out for pleasure, not the $10 our team happened to win. Well, the season's about over in Alaska, and I'd guess about half of the golfers I play with winter in the lower states.