Thursday, May 1, 2008

Alaska: Land of the insane

Ah.. spring is in the air. tulips are blooming, birds are singing, the sun is shining, and you are probably putting your kids shorts on and trying to button your own from last year. yesterday I woke up and looked out my window as I do every morning to check the melting progress and was not very shocked to see 2 feet of freshly fallen snow !!! It is May 1st. We put on our boots and went to school and work ( in Alaska NOTHING is canceled due to snow ... ever). It was a grim day. Kids cried. We adults sighed in our bathroom mirrors at the pale, bloated faces with gaunt eyes, staring back at us. If you ever bumped into a traveling Alaskan in the winter you know what I'm talking about, and you can probably spot us in a crowd. We are the the night of the living dead basically... with like 30 extra pounds of insulation.

Alaska is an interesting place with an interesting climate. If you have never experienced a full year in Alaska here's the low down.

Spring: What month is spring? Here it is May ... 30.... ish. People become insane, toppling over each other in a mad rush to buy plants and quickly plant gardens before the two week planting time frame expires. If you fail, your growth season will be too short and your carrots that you harvest in September will be the size of fingernails.

Summer: June and July maybe... if your lucky. The insanity continues as spirits soar and people try to make the best of the short window of warmth. The sum stays out until around 2 am at which time lawnmowers can be heard as well as children playing out in the streets.Every one is so happy and pleasant,with their unrested smiles pasted on and their forced laughter. Have you ever seen Stepford wives? Like that.

Fall: In every way. You would think someone had died. It is the saddest thing when summer ends and we feel it deeply. have you ever seen the scene in Mary Poppins when Mary Poppins and the children have to leave Uncle Albert's floating tea party ? Like that.Fall begins anytime between August first and August 31st. The leaves fall and then the snow follows promptly.. like the next day.

Winter: We almost always have snow by Halloween ( which is a joke) "cute costume sweetie! are you a skier"?. The season begins sometime in October and continues on until mid May ( happy Easter !)Sunlight becomes sparse and in December you can expect sunrise at 11 and sunset at 3 pm. In other words, if you blink you could miss it. Moods begin to dive and all over Alaska, pharmacies experience shortages of Prozak. People become desperate for anything to make them feel like they did in the summer( I choose food)and by February people start snapping like frozen twigs.

We Alaskans have great pride in our state and many here would rather die than leave. I myself am a fourth generation Alaskan and am bound by some unseen force to this strange and hostile place... that and my grandmother repeatedly tells me that all people who move down to the lower 48 die soon after. So the question is do I want to die warm?


ray said...

Okay, that picture FREAKS me out. Ahh!

Oh, Alaska, how do I miss thee...

Y'know, you could say similar things about Hawaii seasons. Spring: warm, breezy, partly sunny
Summer: warm, breezy, partly sunny
Fall: warm, breezy, partly sunny
Winter: warm, breezy, partly sunny

drives you nuts. But seriously, because of my years in Alaska I DESERVE my years in Hawaii.

Ambie said...

I hate you. Until summer.

The Slackers said...

I am always in tears when I read your posts! I really need to keep my inhaler by the computer. You always make me laugh. You have such an interesting outlook on life, I love it!

ray said...

Barb, you are great for the self-confidence. And yes, keep that inhaler handy. It would be quite the black mark in this blog's less than one month history to already have a fatality. We'd like to keep the body count as low as possible.

Now, if Ambie beats one of her daughters to death......well, there are six others.

Tim said...

I figure that if humans were meant to live in a cold environment, we would have more hair. Asians in particular must have been designed to live in places like Hawaii. Except Ray -- shouldn't you be in Alaska?

Ambie said...

oh dear! HA HA HA HA that was too funny ! I think soup just came out of my nose. Tim wins for the day

Slackers, thank you for the compliment what an ego boost for me.

ray said...

Watch it, Tim! Insult me again and the scarf knitted from my back hair you got for Christmas will be your last!

Cheryl said...

Thanks for the morning, errr, afternoon chuckle!!!

Ambriah, where did you find that picture?? It is very disturbing!!

What else is disturbing is your Grandma's comment about everyone who moves to the lower 48 dying. Is that just the ones who are born in AK? We lived there for 16 years. Was that long enough?? Either way, Luke is toast!

Ambie said...

ha! Don't worry Cheryl I think grandma's omen only applies to those who are related or close to her that defy her wishes. How is Luke anyway? Whitnie still says she will marry him someday.

Cheryl said...

Luke is great! He misses AK a LOT! He would move back in a heartbeat! He has grown a lot in the last year. If he catches up to his feet, he will be pretty tall!

Whitnie! My knitting buddy! I miss you!! Now, my future daughter in law??? Awesome!!

Ambie said...

Glad to hear of Luke's growth that of course is the question on the lips of all of my teens. Will Luke be taller than us?