|May 20||Anchorage, AK||162|
Spent the morning @ the Alaska Native Heritage Center. We pulled up and were astonished by the cost, but Ted went ahead. The center turned out to be wonderful. It is totally staffed by Native peoples from the 5 regions. Perhaps the most intriguing was the Storyteller, John Active. I sat through three half-hour segments.
He told a story about food:
A black fish was swimming in a river. He was trying to find a trap to swim into so that a deserving family could eat him. He came to a house and poked his head out to see what kind of family lived there. He saw a smoking fire, and unused food lying about, and a big mess. He went down to get his breath. He thought he could hear cries of pain. He looked up, but all he could see was the family going about its business. He bobbed under again and still heard the cries of pain. He looked again and realized the cries came from unused food left lying about. Maggots were tearing at it, and the family stepped on scraps lying around. That was why they were crying in pain. The black fish was horrified. He wouldn't give himself to these people since they treated their food so poorly and didn't share their excess. He went to the next family. He listened carefully and heard no cries of pain, only normal business. He looked at the camp and saw that it was orderly and clean. When the family are they were careful. Any left overs were given to the elders of the village. If a scrap fell on the ground, it was picked up and fed to the dogs. Nothing was wasted. The blackfish was pleased, found the family's trap, and swam in, content that he would be well treated.
After half-day at the Heritage Center, we went downtown. Cherish the Ladies was playing that night. Irish music in AK! I was very excited. Ted saw this and got tix. We looked around a bit for red suspenders for one of Ted's friends and then headed for Portage Glacier. The drive was beautiful. I saw a bald eagle. Ted saw Dal Sheep. The glacier was cold, but not too impressive. It has been receding and is now too far away from the park to be very engaging. Went back to Anchorage for the show. It was fabulous. A few mishaps only added charm. Those ladies can jam. They got called back for an unexpected encore. The crowd was great.