The Therapy Journals of the Fat-Headed Klingon Woman

One woman's journey to becoming Her True Self

Flashbacks November 2, 2015

Filed under: Alaska Summer — DDKlingonGirl @ 11:45 pm
Tags: , , ,

Hello, all.  I wanted to go back and give a detailed description of the final days in Alaska so as to provide a bit of closure to the story.

*

The last week or so that the lodge was open, the number of guests we had staying with us was reduced further each day.  From several hundred people at the beginning of the week, we were down to the two final buses carrying only about 80 or 90 people total.  They rolled out at 12:45 or so on Thursday the 17th.  All the employees lined up outside the main lodge building and waved as the buses left.  It was so strange! We had been there on opening day when we were all nervous and had no idea what the season would bring, and now we were saying farewell to the last guests of the season.  For better or worse, we had survived.  The minute they were away, we all cheered and hugged and high-fived.  It was a joyful moment, but if I remember correctly, I probably got a little teary-eyed too.  Less so than I had thought I would.  Which was good.

*

After the guests had left, most of the various departments were having little goodbye parties.  At least we lucky Gift Shop Girls were.  Our managers had brought a ton of food and drinks, and after snagging some chairs from downstairs in the cafeteria, we all sat down and had our little smorgasbord.  Too soon it was time to go back to our rooms and finish packing.  Actually, some of my co-workers were already scheduled to leave that afternoon, but I was lucky I didn’t have to go until the next morning.  I had put off packing until the last possible minute, and besides, there was still another farewell party to go to, in the luggage barn.  They grilled hamburgers and hotdogs for us, and had a bit of a carnival.  Well, ok, there was a cotton candy machine, a popcorn machine, and a dunk tank.  But it was fun watching people try to dunk the managers who had been on their case all season.

*

Finally it was time for the two employee buses to leave, and a majority of employees were ready to hit the road.  Several of my close friends were leaving on those buses, including Nattie B, who had gone on one of my first tours with me, the Devil’s Canyon Jet Boat tour.  Sadly, that turned out to be our only tour together.  Also leaving that day was Lori, the first fellow employee I met in Alaska.  We became acquainted while sitting in the hotel lobby waiting for the bus to come take us to our new summer home.  Many others that I wasn’t super close to, but had enjoyed working with, were also heading out.  It was an odd experience, such a mix of happy and sad.  It reminded me of graduation day, or the last day of camp.

*

NOW it was time to get serious about packing.  I went back to my room and got started.  I think I had already washed all my laundry so I could bring everything home clean.  I had already shipped a couple of boxes of random unneeded stuff, and I STILL had one huge box of souvenirs and gifts I was planning to ship in Wasilla.  My travel plans, as you may remember, were to spend several days at the home of one of my new friends who was actually an Alaska resident, and do a little sightseeing and exploring freed from the limitations of Princess transportation.

*

I am kind of a methodical packer.  I have to have everything as organized as possible, and I was also really concerned about the weight of my suitcases.  Luckily, I didn’t have to worry about it for a while, since I wouldn’t be flying out for almost a week.  I packed everything away, except for my theater posters.  Those I left up until I woke up Friday morning, and finally took them down after I was showered, dressed and ready to check out.  The checkout process was not as big a deal as I had been afraid it would be.  First we had to take all our linens, including our shower curtain, to the checkout station.  Then when we were completely packed and ready to leave and had made sure everything was clean, we were supposed to go fetch our checkout manager, who would then come check off the list to make sure we did everything right, and then were were supposed to be ready to vacate our room.  I was NOT looking forward to this, because I had two huge suitcases, a backpack, a tote bag, and two shipping boxes (one I was sending for my roommate) to deal with, and I wasn’t thrilled about having to drag all that stuff by myself to the place where I was going to have to wait for my friend’s mom who was coming to pick us both up.  Thankfully, my checkout person let me wait in my room, Lord love her.  That made the whole waiting thing SO much easier.

*

Finally Natalie’s mom arrived and we loaded up with all haste and woohoooo! We were out of there.  Again, it was a very odd feeling, very mixed emotions.  Also nerves about staying in the home of strangers basically, for almost a week.

*

I shouldn’t have worried.  Her family was perfectly welcoming and I enjoyed their home.  We did some running around town, saw local sights, and when we got home, I believe I celebrated returning to civilization by watching M*A*S*H on Netflix.

*

On Sunday morning we got up and hit the road for a little trip down to Seward.  We were planning to visit the Sea Life Center and I was planning to take a day cruise and hopefully get to see some wildlife.  We stayed in Seward two nights and enjoyed the adventure.  It was a beautiful place, a tiny port town surrounded by little mountains.

*

When we got home, we spent a day hanging out with Claire, one of our other Gift Shop co-workers, who also happened to live in the same town as Natalie- Wasilla.  We went to Hatcher Pass and a little restaurant that served some apparently quite famous corn fritters, which Claire had been looking forward to for days.

*

The last day I spent in Alaska started early.  We rode with Nat’s dad into Anchorage and hung out in a coffee shop for a while, while he had his first meeting of the day.  Then he took us to the mall and we amused ourselves for several hours, shopping, eating lunch, and getting our nails done.  Finally her dad was done with work and he came and picked us up and took me to the airport.  It felt like we were cutting it a little close, but I made it with time to spare, and boarded my plane for home.   The adventure was finally over.  I don’t think I had really expected it would ever end.

*

Here are some of the pictures from that week, as well as the video of my takeoff from Ted Stevens International Airport in Anchorage.  If you listen closely, you can hear me crying.

*

Until next time,

D.

 

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