Thursday, March 1, 2012

The Beginning.

Eight months seems like a long time to wait. I'm impetuous. When I make a big decision, I don't like to wait long to put my plans into action. What's that phrase? You only live once? Shoot... I think this is going to feel like two separate lives for me, but what's stopping me? I'm going to move to Alaska.

I've spent most of life close to home- Massachusetts. I've been a Boston city girl for the last 7 years after growing up in surburbia and a 6 year haul in Houston, Texas for college. I'm 31, have no children or partner. I have a job at a small music college which I enjoy very much, but it doesn't pay a whole heck of a lot and there's no real room for advancement here. I've been feeling like I'm not doing very much with my life lately. I need an adventure!

I've been to Alaska many times- thanks to having family in Juneau. I was less than a year old the first time I went (so I obviously don't remember that trip), we took another family trip in the mid-1980s, and then I went for 3 weeks in 1994 before I started high school. In recent years, I've been back twice (2008 and 2010), and I have plans there again this summer. I've been all over southeast Alaska: Juneau, Sitka, Ketchikan, Kake and Haines. I've also been to Seward on the Kenai Peninsula, Anchorage and Fairbanks, and Denali National Park (my favorite spot yet). This summer I'll be back in Denali for a few days, and then I'm spending a week doing volunteer work on Prince William Sound.

I have an aunt and uncle in Juneau, and they've been trying to convince me to move there for years. They see something in me that screams ALASKA!!, I guess! I toyed with the idea of moving there a couple of years ago. I started the application process for a program, Alaska Transition to Teaching- you earn your Alaska teaching certificate while teaching in rural communities, but I couldn't go through with it then. I might revisit that idea next year. For the time being though, the plan is to move in with my aunt and uncle, find some work and save money for a while. They've been calling their house "The Hostel" because other cousins and young family members have stayed there while figuring out their next life move. I'm glad to know I'm not the first one to do this.

Me with Wilbur at Sue and Larry's house in 2010
So the plan, for now, is that I'll attend my sister's wedding in Lancaster, Pennsylvania in October- arriving with the car packed and ready to go, and then leaving on the cross-country trip afterwards. I'd like to go sooner, but it wouldn't make sense to fly back to the east coast so soon after leaving. Plane fare is expensive to and from Juneau. I love long road trips and it will be fun to figure out what route I'll take. There is one large complicating factor, though. I will have my cat with me. Sigh.

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