Alaska
Chronicles
:Alaska Ý
Date City Miles
May 19 Denali to Anchorage, AK 265

Golden Nugget Campground

Snow in Denali

It is 11 days into this journey. We drove from Denali to Anchorage, arriving around lunch time. Along the way we stopped at what are billed as excellent views of McKinley, but the hoary beast was hiding in clouds. Yesterday's views were indeed a special treat.

The campground we planned on using was closed. This has become all too common in AK. The "season" hasn't started, so damn the schedule they gave to AAA. We ended up @ a place that is situated practically in the city. Every night we have camped has been within earshot of traffic.

Todd at the Anchorage Museum of History and Art

After setting up camp, we went to the library. It was wonderful. The building is magnificent and offers wonderful views of the mountains. After spending an hour emailing family and friends, we went to the Anchorage Museum of History and Art. It too was wonderful. They had just begun a new exhibit on the Russian exploration of AK. Lots of artifacts from the Russian Navy-including journals like this one. This exhibit would have been impossible 10 years ago.

After a quick call home and dinner, we scouted for a church. We investigated an "Episcopal" church that was close. We were puzzled by "Methodist Episcopal". Ted walked in since there wasn't an outside sign listing services and discovered the church, of course, is an all-black church. AME. Unfortunately, the time is bad for us. We both feel funny about not going there though. I'm not sure what Sunday will bring.

Ted gets up close with a Grizzly

We then went to see the movie Gladiator. I think I enjoyed it more than Ted. I'm not sure why. The story was fairly predictable and corny in bits, but the spectacle was grand. I find tales of men leading by honor compelling. Perhaps because it is so rare a thing. Will we ever be able to believe in honor again I wonder. Will honor ever be accomplished w/o violence? I know that such stories tug at my heart, but I cannot believe in men so completely. All men have feet of clay, and I cannot submit fully to such beings. I demand a perfection I cannot provide. Each time I have believed the highest of a man, he has failed me. Each person I have looked up to has proven to be devastatingly flawed. It is an easy answer to say "Let your guide be Christ." And He is. But where is the one who will lead in that following? Where is the unifier of the Church? I have not found that person. Why do we look for leaders among men? What is it in me that wants to believe such a leader exists? What is it in me that wants to be able to do whatever the leader bids with the full knowledge that such orders are good and right and true? Whatever it is, it is held in check by a perhaps more powerful feeling that it is no longer possible for such a person to be. Vanity.

Before we left Denali, we plotted a change to the journey. Once in Anchorage, we solidified those goals. We are not going on the Eagle River Hike. Instead, we have booked passage on a ferry out of Haines for Prince Rupert. We leave Monday and arrive Wed. From there we drive to Vancouver and on.

I'm not sure how I feel about this change to the journey. Ted has pushed it more than I. He seems to believe I need to see what there is to see. I had believed the point of the trip was the hike. As the journey has progressed, though, both Ted and I have been drawn more to the city. Is this because I am seemingly out of shape? Does he not think I can handle the hike? Or is it not something he really wants to do? Today he mentioned Randy. Is the trail too much a reminder? Questions questions questions.