Friday, March 11, 2016

Early Seward Life: Unpacking and Exploring

Greetings on a snowy day in Seward. The morning's rain has turned to heavy snow falling steadily. The view out over Resurrection Bay is thus obscured, but the giant flakes are gorgeous in themselves. We arrived here ten days ago and have been unpacking and rearranging and getting acquainted with the town little bits each day. My trepidations from the drive north melted away as we have been able to walk to this cafe (Resurrect Cafe), to the library, bank, grocery store and hardware store. There is ample road running available as well as trails close at hand. There is the salt water of the bay, which delights Reed and will allow him to do plenty of kayaking in the coming years. I also enjoy the waterfront, especially for jogging and walking along, on the lookout for marine mammals. 

High above the Matanuska Valley,
on the Glen Highway between Glennallen and Palmer

  We found our little house much as we had left it last October. It was snug and cozy and much smaller than the last space that we inhabited, the two bedroom apartment on Beach Drive SW in West Seattle. We are struggling to rearrange in order to fit all of the necessary belongings inside of the space and still have room to move about. Each day the chaos decreases a bit. I am eager for when we can move about freely, without boxes blocking our path.
Soon after arrival, exterior wall of our house. 

The town is beginning to come alive for the spring, after what seems was a quiet winter routine. It seems that many people go away for a few weeks or months in the winter, to get away from the dark, see new places and visit their families. The gearing up for the summer season of many visitors and employment for all who want to work is beginning. All of a sudden, it seems that everywhere in town is hiring. We have committed to go back to work at Denali again this summer. We are looking forward to spending another summer up near the park, and at the same time, as we settle in here, we also long to stay and work here through the summer. Reed especially longs to work on the water here, as a kayak guide or deck hand. We reassure ourselves that we will do that next summer, and perhaps the summer after that. We still have time.
Low tide on Resurrection Bay, view from Seward waterfront park

Seward's Library - one of my favorite places in town! 

Some of our favorite things about Seward thus far are its accessibility. It's wonderful to be able to easily walk to the library, where there is comfortable seating, free wifi, plenty of books, magazines and movies to peruse. I sometimes can't believe my good fortune to be living in a town with a gorgeous library with a number of massive mountains jutting up all around it. Another new favorite is the restaurant, The Cookery. We went out for a celebratory lunch last week because Reed finished our 2015 taxes, which was quite an undertaking. The winter lunch program offers two different meals each day, so we got one of each. I had halibut tacos and Reed had a green pork burrito. So delicious! And the meal finished off with a homemade chocolate chip cookie. Last night we went out for dessert on the treat money that our friend Katherine gave us before we left the Seattle area. Her instructions were to spend it on chocolate or a dessert, something decadent that we wouldn't have bought for ourselves. So we ordered a dutch baby dessert, with all the extra fixings - blueberry syrup, cream cheese ice cream and bacon!

We just have five more days here in Seward before we depart for Anchorage, to catch a flight out to Dillingham. We will be working alongside two other people, doing interviews of salmon fishermen as economic research for a phD thesis. We're quite looking forward to getting to spend time in another new part of Alaska. In the meantime, we've got lots of unpacking and repacking yet to do. We're grateful to be in Alaska, and especially glad that we get to call Seward home!

At the base of Mount Marathon,
ready for our 30 minute morning walk to greet the day

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