Saturday, October 17, 2009

A tale of two sunsets

Manu National Park, Amazon rainforest, Peru

Another beautiful day in the jungle.  Scandalously steamy, millions of creatures all with their voices raised in a deafening cacophony of... peace, believe or not.  I felt nothing but peaceful.

We started at one of those clay licks, where the macaws gather to chow down in the early morning hours:

Then a day on the water:


We climbed to a platform on top of a tree for a bird's eye view:

 A perfectly perfect day.  Heading to the boat that would take us down the Madre de Dios river and back to our lodge, I saw this:



Tony Knowles Coastal Trail, Anchorage, Alaska

My first day in Anchorage is always exciting.  It usually feels like there's a beehive in my belly.  I know good things are about to happen.  Today was no different.  I had just landed, and had over two weeks of wandering to look forward to.  Plus, I was flying up to Nome in the morning!

Gary picked me up and brought me back to his place, where I refreshed myself on the house rules:

Got it.  I think.  No guns on the floor, right?  And check your... wait a minute...

I got to my favorite spot and made myself comfortable.

Gary tossed me the keys to his extra truck and said, "Here! I gotta go back to work!  Have fun!  See ya!"

Gary is awesome.

 I enjoyed the sun for a while, then decided to go pie-rootin.  If you don't know what pie-rootin is, email me for a definition.  wanderlust613(at)  Maybe I'll post one on here someday, for all you non-New Orleanians out there.

So I drove downtown, went here and there, up and down, hither and yon.  Saw this somewhere along the way, which I took as a very good sign:

When it got later in the evening, I decided to go to Earthquake Park.  Being outside is the whole point of going to Alaska, and I wanted to try to spot a moose.  That area is a good place to find one, especially at dusk, or Alaska's version of dusk, anyway.

I love moose.

So I wandered all over Earthquake Park, up and around, in and out.  Found lots of moose tracks, but no moose.  So I decided to walk along the Coastal Trail, maybe I could at least spot a pretty sunset.  I love the Coastal Trail, it's one of my favorites things about Anchorage.  I found this helpful sign:

Thanks Bill!

Walking around a bend, I came across this.  Jackpot.

Heading back to the truck, the bees in my belly were starting to wind down.  The tingle will never completely leave as long as I'm in the state, but it gets drowsy sometimes.  The air smelled like trees and the wind was so quiet.  As I pulled out of the parking lot, look who was having a snack across the street!

As I drove up Northern Lights Blvd., heading to Baxter, the buzzing in my belly was starting again.

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