Sunday, December 23, 2012

Anchorage Temperatures Hit New Low

Betcha think I'm complaining. Well, not exactly, but as one gets older, it seems harder to take the below zero weather, so I've decided to escape to warmer climes for a month or so. As a visiter, you might enjoy visiting here this time of year, as we have many outdoor attractions, and the night sky is so beautiful. They just opened a rain forest ski trail of 5 K's thru the woods of Girdwood, and the pictures show it to be inviting, if you're dressed for the weather!

This Christmas season seems unseasonably (Pun) long, perhaps because the stores started pushing the buying period in October. Yes, as soon as the witches came down, Santa went up. For me, personally, it's been a period of losing old friends, as there seem to be a heap of close friends who has passed away.

There haven't been any movies to my liking lately, but Christmas day promises to bring several good new films, and the theatres are a toasty place to relax and keep warm. I did go to a film last week, and I had blinking bulb necklace, and they told me to turn it off - well, okay.

The fiscal cliff is supposed to be resolved this week, but I wouldn't bet on it. I am trying to not turn political in my blogs, but it's all around us, and I keep a 'political' folder that is buldging with over a hundred 'gotta save this one' letters. Some are really funny, if you have a warped sense of humor.

Since I've started griping, you may not be interested in this upcoming paragraph, as it's stricty Spenard news. First of all, Spenard is a suburb of Anchorge, called mid-town Anchorage, and it starts in the 2200 block, so I live on the edge, but Spenard Road is fairly short, but cuts thru the club scene. Well, they decided to make a 3 lane road out of the present 4 lane road, to make the traffic flow better. They tried this with Arctic Boulevard, only 2 blocks east, and it didn't work, so now they're going to do it again. Yes, you read that right. Also on Spenard Road is Sunrise Bakery, with Hostess Twinkies and other favorite treats. Well, change that 'is' to 'was' - they went bankrupt, nationally, and that was part of the history of old Spenard.

Our favorite car is parked indoors for the winter, but thought you'd enjoy a picture from warmer times -- he brings it out to our parades, too. Pretty clever.

By now you realize that this is a curmudgeon writing this blog, but let me say that some good things remain, namely my haunts, the American Legion, the Petroleum Club, and Barnes and Noble. As long as they're intact, I'm happy. Downtown is just 2 miles form my condo, and there is a lot of activity there, but parking has become such a problem, most of us limit our trips to town, unless you work there and are provided a parking space. We're just catching up to the cities in the lower states, but it had to come. My next blog will be from sunnier climes, as I'm becoming a snowbird.

Friday, December 7, 2012

The Coldest December

It's below zero again today, so I can't wait any longer -- I have to post something and forget about the comfort zone. It's true that I keep a space heater by my desk in addition to a fairly comfortable condo. My big mistake is going outside in all of this, and when you drive south in Anchorage, the sun hits you in the face. I've had to pull over several times just because you can't see the road. So far I've been lucky and no mishaps, but I avoid going out midday. Of course you're aware that our days are still getting shorter, and it's dark by 4 pm, which does affect your mood around here.

Cold or not, activities still abound, and being the Christmas season, there are more parties than ever in Anchorage. Shopping is still the big thing, altho' I read that more people are shopping online these days - it doesn't seem like it in the crowded downtown stores and malls.

My circle of activity was recently expanded and I find that Anchorage now had 2 Olive Gardens, a Coach store and Target. Now, I'm waiting for a Famous Dave's, or is that just a local one in Wisconsin. They advertise The Red Lobster and Macy's on TV, but that's in the future somewhere. But Anchorage is surely different from the Anchorage I first saw when we arrived in 1966. Kind of sad, really, as we don't see women wearing fur parkas, nor any totem poles around, and the parking meters downtown take credit card. We've just been absorbed by progress. I remember getting TV shows a week late, and reading scores in the paper before the games were shown. Now we have so many sports bars, but none as big as The Peanut Farm, which is too big to even explain -- it's huge, and I went there recently for a reunion of my college and it was so mobbed, I felt pretty small in the crowd.

Well, I'm off to an annual party by the visitors and convention bureau, which is now called "Visit Anchorage" -- why would they change the name. . .. perhaps, to spend a few bucks. Thanks to the oil companies, we are in much better financial position that the feds, so I'm in favor of secession, but I won't go into politics here. I promise . . .