North To Alaska (State Fair & Back to Anchorage)

Woke up Saturday morning with the Alaska State Fair right across from our hotel. The Noisy Goose was next door, so we breakfasted there. Full of locals and fair-goers, The Noisy Goose was definitely noisy, but the food was very good. We even tried reindeer sausage, which was fine (tasted like sausage).   Drove around Palmer a bit…

Madness in March

It is madness in March*–especially in the mountains of Western North Carolina–to dream that a couple of warm days mean spring is nearly here. A couple of warm days is just that: a couple of warm days. We’ve had them this week–beautiful, blue-sky days with temperatures in the 70’s…but you just can’t trust ’em. The…

The Maine Thing (continued)

The second full day of my trip to Maine, we drove north up the coast as far as Belfast. (Maine seems to have a high percentage of towns named after European cities and countries, although not necessarily pronounced the same way. Calais, for example, is pronounced “Callus” by the locals.) Beautiful day of blue skies, blue…

The Maine Thing

Spent a wonderful week in Maine recently. They’re about two weeks ahead of us in fall color, so the leaves were already changing, and it looked like it would be a beautiful season. Flew into Portland and stayed with a friend who lives on Pine Street. In 1994, I spent a semester at the SALT Institute for…

A "Fur" Piece

I can always tell which season it is by petting my dog Penny, a shepherd-chow mix. Her coat is a sort of seasonal barometer, if you will, of what’s happening in the natural world. Here are the basics: Winter: It doesn’t even get that cold here, but Penny’s fur thickens as if she were destined to spend cold,…