Monday, August 1, 2011

Alaska - Things I am told and Observed

AK has one of the highest suicide rates and domestic violence per capita, I am told while discussing the hardships they endure during the winter. Also don’t expect much kindness during the winter time here; people’s moods and attitudes are not the same as they are in the summer time.   

AK has the highest alcoholism per capita. Therefore, bars are not allowed to have any happy hours or “ladies night” type deals.
60% of the population changes every ten years. 

Hardly anything is made here, even their oil is sent to refineries in WA. Not sure why this is so!

If u live here full time, good idea to have your own float plan or at least a boat.

People here go to bars a lot to drink as a social function. They have been cooped up in their homes all winter long. Also most homes are small, making it hard to throw parties. In Spring, they are super stoked and love to talk to people.

Common question asked, what time is it. don’t wear a watch and it is so easy to loose sense of time with day light. Right after solstice, which was 6/21, they started saying summer is over and dreading the decrease in daylight.

Education in remote villages has always been important and still is for natives in AK. If you are a teacher looking for a job, come up. If you have a nonprofit background, come up. I hear they pay well. I guess people don’t think to move to AK for such work. It’s more than just timber, fishing, and oil. We also have a very distorted view of AK. It’s not all bears and snow.  
 The town of Chase is only accessible by train or a 15-mile hike. AK is the only state u can still flag down a train to stop.

Met some people from Anchorage who are in a kayaking club at Holgate Glacier. One guy told me he is going to Nome to scuba dive for 5 days and dive for gold. An ounce of gold is $1,500. I love all the little AK stories I am told. So many different activities and way of living up here.

AK is not only rich in oil, gold (past), beauty, mts, fish, bears and other wildlife and sea life, but also rich in spirit. There’s something in the air that is impossible to describe as one must feel it for themself.

Since the 70s, marijuana has been legal to home grow and have 3 oz; it was a Supreme Court ruling that it is our right to privacy. Can’t smoke on streets or sell in large quantities. Although laws are getting laxed for medical use in CA, OR and CO. I always thought it was odd that pot is illegal as I find cigarettes and alcohol more harmful medically, physically, and socially. 

Yurts are popular here: preschool, summer homes, and year round homes full time.  

I am excited to see where I will end up, been this way before my journey. Though I had a viable plan to relocate to HI, I joking told people “watch me end up in Alaska:. Never imagined that could happen as I have been wanting to move near a beach since I was 18! I really had no expectation of AK and did not know much besides the typical warnings of bears, cold, and huge mosquitoes.

  Just for Fun:
- When people visit friend’s places and they ask to use the restroom, they are asking to use the shower.
- A friend said to me " the women are the true gold around here". There's like a 4:1 ratio, so single ladies, come on up!
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