I live and write on Lingít Aaní, and gratefully acknowledge the past, present and future caretakers of this beautiful place, the Jilkaat Kwaan and Jilkoot Kwaan.


Everything happens all at once it seems: the annual Haines Borough budget (we passed it last night, phew), ramped up business for our lumberyard and every shop and eatery in town, cruise ships, tourists, fishing season (salmon gillnetting opens Sunday), Little League, school teacher Jordan’s new foot race series for children (wonderful!), golf (league night is Weds.), bears, moose,  and puppies and kittens at the animal rescue kennel. Lynx on the prowl. (I’ve seen a phone video for proof of one at Lutak, near the Takshanuk Trail tour, chasing a rabbit.) Eagles, waves, wind in the trees, barking dogs, hooters hoo-ing, hammers, airplanes, diesel engines, and road construction– and the annual bike relay is this Saturday (yup, Chip and I are riding on a two person team, we each plan to pedal about 80 miles), and so is the Fishermen’s barbecue at the Fairgrounds.(They still need volunteers to serve the meal.) My dear neighbor Betty sold her house to an active young family and is moving to Haines Assisted Living. There are three new babies in town and one man who had been sick a long time while cared for by his grandson, has died. 

I think it was Einstein who said we are all dependent on the labors of others, but you don’t have to be a genius to know that. It is easy though to forget it when all is running smoothly. A friend’s fishing boat engine seized up this week, just before the season. The suspected cause was a loose fitting inside a pump. One guy (or gal) at a factory far away didn’t tighten it well.

Still, the zipper on my jacket works, my bike seat is comfortable, the hose nozzle “showers” on the shower setting and gently waters the tomato seedlings, the chicken feed is nutritious- the hens are laying, the pages of the book I’m reading  are in order, drivers stay in the proper lane as they zoom by on freeways in cities way down the coast from here. If you call 911 the local helpers come and they are so very kind and skilled. When I press save, you will be able to read this no matter where you are.

Life on earth is a team sport. There are millions of people on mine and yours that we have never even met, much less thanked. Sure, every now and then there is a loose bolt, but the response to that crisis has been swift and generous.

 My phone is  pinging with a message from a friend: “Diana just chased a brown bear out of her garden.” It’s a miracle delivered to me through the efforts of countless strangers. Well, I guess it’s time to hook up the electric fence. Let’s hope it works.