Here is another tip for nervous flyers from a pilot friend, "Better to be on the ground wishing you were in the air, than in the air wishing you were on the ground." (Tip might not be the proper word.) Speaking of proper words, or funny ways to say things, I spoke with JJ in Ireland yesterday and she talked all about her trip to a rural island. "I have never seen so many rock fences," she said. I'm talking to a radio station in Minneapolis this morning, I hope. The interview is at 10am central time, which ought to be 7am my time.
There is a new column up at the Alaska Dispatch, which is a paper you should check out, if you haven't. You'll learn a lot about the state there, politically, socially and economically. When I was in New York the sentiment among travel writers what that we are all kind of crazy, like... well, you know, which is just not true.
If all the bird life weren't enough of a thrill, I was sipping my coffee when suddenly (yes, suddenly) there was a moose right next to the window. I yelled to Eliza, and we jumped up and he looked at us (from about eight feet away, the width of the deck he was up against) sort of leaped in shock at my red bathrobe and morning hair, and ran down the beach. The question is, what if moose were like birds and instead of turning away from the window, he ran toward it and jumped through it? What would we do then? I hope he didn't know we are having moose steaks for dinner tonight.
We rode out to Lutak this morning on the new pavement in calm sunshine as the tide was coming in. We were just in time to see about a gazillion feeding shorebirds on the flats at the mouth of the Chilkoot River. The eulachon (hooligan) are in so there were plenty of hungry sea lions splashing and waving their flippers. A dozen or so dipnetters were getting ready to scoop up the little greasy fish. We saw Richard on his bike on the road to the lake (too much snow to pedal past the weir) and he said he's been listening to a wolf sing in the evening.
Raven's Brew coffee of Ketchikan is sponsoring my book tour this spring, and they are adding a bunch of stuff about it to their site, including a sneak preview where you may a read a chapter if you'd like to, soon, I think. Now I'm off to help some friends dip net for eulachon. So much for washing the windows.
It was so nice to wake up to the gulls calling and diving out the window this morning. It looks more like spring back east, but sounds more like it here. The Eulachon are in and the sky over the tide flats looks like a ticker-tape parade with all the birds. I have posted the final cover of the new book, it is nice, bike riding moose and all. What's an Alaskan author to do? (I figure two books makes me an author, right?) The books are on their way to bookstores now, and will be available May 18th most places, except Haines, where they will be on sale beginning May 17th.
In Juneau, actually, waiting to catch a flight home, at a motel across the street from the airport. My plane leaves at 7:45, so I can leave here at about 7:25. I am a bit scatter-shot-- But I have been thinking about an art exhibit at my brother-in-law's gallery (Lurhing Augustine) by a Canadian couple, Janet Cardiff and George Bures Miller. There were three multi media works. My favorite was The Cabinet of Curiousness, an antique wooden card catalog with 20 drawers.
Clyde's Column is up at the Alaska Dispatch. Phew. Now it's time for a great breakfast. Fresh dolly varden, toast and tomatoes. I've been looking forward to it since I fell asleep. Chip and I went fishing (and napping in the sun) yesterday at 19 mile. The sun was so strong that the sand on the riverbank was warm. We caught 3 dollys (2 for him, 1 for me) but let one go, since Stuart brought us 20 lbs. of fresh halibut and we are in the fish the now.
I am going to be on West Coast Live with Jane Smiley. Is it okay to ask for her autograph in the green room? If you are in San Francisco June 12, join us. Me and my good friend Jane Smiley, that is. Can you believe it? I'll probably be holding the book that she reads from. ( Last time I was on the show I did have Calvin Trillin sign a book for me.) I'm glad that Sedge is my friend or I may not make the cut for his terrific literary radio show.
Take Good Care of the Garden and the Dogs has been chosen as an Indie Next Pick for June! This is the national organization of independent bookstores, so that's good news. Booksellers make the picks and many wrote really nice things about it: