As many days are spent in Alaska… today we spent the day in the great outdoors. There is so much to see in Alaska and the weather has been absolutely FABULOUS our entire stay so far. The weather has held around 70 degrees during the day with no rain. This is perfect for some outdoor activities and today was one of beauty.
We started out the day staying at our house and hanging around the movie room. We took in a showing of Madagascar, tore up some lunch and headed out the door.
First stop… caffeine. We headed to a cool little spot in Eagle River called “Jitters”. The place was packed with people and over half of them were pint sized. Looking around, I saw that many of them had the same T-shirts on. It was a “Boys and Girls” club and they were all sucking down Frappachinos like they were going out of style. I ordered my regular… a Hazelnut Latte… and found a spot by the fireplace. It was a nice place with a good vibe. I am sure that I will be making a few more stops in this place before my time in Alaska is done.
Next stop was a place called “Thunderbird Falls”. This place was a little more elusive as my GPS took me 20 miles in one direction and then 20 miles in the other direction. I finally received GPS coordinates and set off to make it happen. We parked, plunked $5 in the “honor box” for visiting and headed down the trail.
I was assured that this hike was an “easy hike” by many people. It starts off with a hill that is pretty long and at a steady incline. For me… no problem. However, my wife is six months prego and I kept picturing her going into labor on an Alaskan trail. The bears would be the least of my worries at that point. We pushed through the trail which wasn’t as “easy” as we expected. The falls were beautiful, but the swarms of mosquitoes that were waiting for us at the end of the trail made the waterfall less “amazing”. Between swatting the ones buzzing my ears and killing the ones landing on my neck, I just wanted to squeeze out a few photos and get the heck out of there.
Finally, we made it out of the den of malaria and headed back to the car. Hitting the car, we searched out Yelp for another fun activity. It led us into the heart of Anchorage to a place called “Point Woronzof”.
This spot was amazing. We parked at the top and followed a trail to the bottom. I couldn’t determine which was cooler… the rock beach or the planes that seemed to be landing in the parking lot. The seals actually come up and hang out on this beach, but they were all out fishing or sleeping or watching reruns when we were there. The kids threw rocks into the ocean as we tried to skip oversized boulders across the salty waves. They went “plunk” and disappeared under the liquid… only to be pushed to the shore again.
On our way back we stopped off for some pizza. We went to a cheap little hole in the wall called Napoli’s Pizza. We got crazy and ordered one with gyro meat and feta cheese. I don’t know if you’ve ever tried one of these before… but it was delectable! A new fave… for sure.
Now, I’m back at the house with a lamb meat hangover. It’s been a great day so far. The beauty around me astounds me every moment that I’m here. I appreciate the mountains and the trees and the water and even the mosquitoes! (I’m sure God put them here for some reason).
That’s how you have to look at life sometimes. Sure… the mosquitoes are a pain in my butt. They make me miss out on enjoying a great moment. But, there is some reason for them. And, I have to simply accept that.
We all have mosquitoes in our lives. Maybe they are people or things that seem to steal a little bit from our lives. We didn’t put them there… but they are there. So, we choose what we do with them. Swat them and keep smiling or choose not to leave the house.
Some people never go out because of the bad things or the negative things that “could happen”. They never take a risk or a chance on something bigger because they fear what may happen. They have been bit in the past and never want to be bit again. So… they stay at home. They choose to do nothing and are left wondering why life is so boring.
I want to encourage you to go hiking and get bit. Risk something and fall down. Reach for something and miss. Because, it is only in reaching that you stretch and trying that you do. You only have one life… make it count!
Here’s a random shot of the cute cat who is staying with me. His name is Oscar!