Tuesday, November 27, 2012


Alaska uniform complete. Assimilation achieved.

Alaska Brewing Company hoodie, Carhartts, XtraTufs, dog.
                                                                                                 (dog: borrowed)

Monday, November 26, 2012

Juneau Girls Love the Rain

Truth be told, I love snow more than rain- it's easier to be outdoors in snow. However, you gotta embrace the rain when you live in a temperate rain forest!

A birthday gift from my cousins

Bad Moon Rising over Mt. Roberts

November 26
Sunrise: 8:12am
Sunset: 3:18pm



It's been snowing off and on (mostly on) for the last day and a half. I woke up yesterday on my 32nd birthday to a winter wonderland. It was a surprise- I check the weather report pretty regularly, but I hadn't noticed much news of snow. I jumped on Weather Underground, and sure enough, there was a Winter Weather Advisory posted. I'm finding that the weather forecast doesn't mean too much around here. Even within the Juneau area, there are several micro-climates. You can be in Auke Bay where it's clear and calm, or you can be 15 miles south in Thane where it's blowing 40mph with very little visibility.

Now there's snow everywhere, and it's beautiful. I even got to shovel snow! I'm sure that will get old quickly. I must say, I don't mind getting the exercize.

Emmitt the Dog

Rosy Cheeks on Birthday 32

Juneau City Hall

Dent in Snow

View from my Office

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

My Juneau November in Pictures

Winter Wonderland at the Mendenhall Glacier
Alaska's Constellation over Mount Juneau

View from my office window

First day of work!

Snowy view from the office

It's like a REAL office


Gettin' out there

Kameko's perch

Porcupine in a tree

Thunder Mountain Big Band rehearsal studio

Yours truly will be singing with the big band orchestra!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Sewage and other aspects of isolated living

Juneau is directly connected to North America. Juneau is actually the largest state capital in area, and it also is the only one that borders a foreign country. Habitable Juneau is quite small. On one side, there is the sea, and on the other- high rocky peaks. For all intensive purposes, we live on an island. There are no roads out of Juneau- although some would like to build one along the Lynn Canal to Skagway. That road would be expensive and usage limited (it could only be open for a short period in the summer due to avalanche activity).

I'm starting to understand better some interesting aspects of living on an "island".


There's a barge that comes in once a week- on Wednesdays. It brings all of the groceries and consumer goods. I was told the other day that to get the best quality produce- go to the supermarket on Thursday for it will be the freshest you can get really. Speaking of which, produce sucks here no matter what. In Boston, I could stop by Whole Foods any day of the week and get high quality ingredients. That is not the case here. So far I've learned: forget about fresh tomatoes. They don't exist here. Spinach is cheap because it doesn't weigh much. Usually, regular dry goods cost 20% more. It's strange how prices work, but in general, you pay a lot more at the grocery store.


This topic prompted my post tonight, actually. I'm living at the end of a dead-end 6 mile road in Juneau where there's no sewer lines. As far as I understand, each house has a small septic system that treats household waste and then there's a pipe that runs out to the Gastineau Channel. Hmm. I'm really no expert, but this all worries me a bit. With so many individual systems, things are likely to go wrong. For example, we've been smelling a strong sewage smell for the last few weeks here. Professionals have not been out so we don't know yet if it's our system or a neighbor's. In the meantime, it's pretty darn gnarly. You people in the big cities should count your lucky stars for public sanitation.


I still don't know a lot about trash and recycling here. There is a landfill in Juneau and limited recycling. I know a lot still needs to be transported by barge down south. There was a barge that left the other day with a load full of scrap metal including old school busses. You see a lot of ruined docks, structures and beached boats that have been rotting in place for a long time. I'm betting that they haven't been removed because there's no place to put them... or it would be very expensive to get them out. It's cool but sad to see the old ruins around town. How long can we continue to bring shit in and abandon it when it dies?

I think this topic is an important one and will come up again soon.

Until then....

Friday, November 9, 2012

My first Skype date with a friend from Boston... and his cat.

This was the first time in a month I've had a long conversation with someone from my old workplace so I got all the dirt I could. What fun?!

Boy, that cat wanted his pizza. 

West Glacier Trail Hike on a Sunny Day

It's the edge of winter at the Mendenhall Glacier in Juneau.

Mountain Goats

Mountain goats in the lower right

XtraTufs on Ice