I went south for a visit to friends in Farthest North Ice Free Harbor Town, Alaska. I have a busy social schedule planned but I am glad to be here. There is a grizzly bear mamma and her cub on the river gravel bars that run through town fishing for hooligan (a very fatty fish) and they have jammed up traffic. I feel the anxiety of the traffic patrol man who is trying to keep the tourists from going up and trying to pet mamma bear who would not take very kindly to such a thing. En-route to town I had to stop for mamma moose and her week old calf. Mamma stepped easily over the guard rail lining the road and the poor calf couldn't figure out what to do - and then it panicked and dove over the rail getting high sided on it and then crashing down into the gravel and dirt on it's beautiful little muzzle. Poor thing!!
It turned out to be an eventful day. The Disreputable Dog and I hung out with all manner of friends both canine and human - we walked 3 beaches, had breakfast, lunch, and dinner with different groups, took a hike, and then, on the hike, as we were down by yet a fourth beach the Disreputable Dog took a sniff at another human's backpack and was immediately trounced by their dog who apparently is very protective of treats. My poor pup was left with a gash in his muzzle and his ear and we spent the afternoon hunting down the vet and getting staples put in. Luckily the vet was around, he can be very difficult to track down, but he was out mowing the lawn and quipped that I didn't have to get my dog injured in order to come by and see him. The Disreputable Dog was out for the rest of the day - all drugged up and in pain he could hardly lift his tail for a thump when he was greeted. Luckily he had a nice soft floor to stay in to sleep it off on.
It's very odd being in this town. When I left it was as if I had never been there at all - like I had imagined those two years. But now that I'm back everyone (from barristas to bar tenders) acts as if I never left, as if no time had passed since they last saw me. They ask where I ended up but they seem completely unsurprised to see me. I did have a few people track me down though just to shout - it is you! you're back! And then I had to tell them it was only for the weekend. I am absolutely delighted to see friends and catch up on old familiar haunts but I know in my heart that this is only a town I will ever only just visit in the future.