When I first arrived in Juneau it was the dead of night, and of course I couldn’t get a sense of what and where I was. Well that all changed the very night I arrived.
After getting settled at Jocelyn’s house, we decided to take Bailey and Lucky out for the last walk of the night and she started looking for a head lamp. You know the kind that miner’s use. What do you need that for I asked ever so innocently. To be aware our surroundings in case we run into a bear my sister sweetly answered. WTH?!!!
Oh Monday…you are such a silly East Coast girl from the suburbs of Maryland.
Yes, I knew there are/were bears in Alaska. When discussing the potential Juneau move with my sister Nicole, she specifically mentioned the fact that I don’t do roughing it well (i.e. camping), that eagles would pick up my Shih Tzu’s like they were paper (for reference please see The Proposal) and there were bears in Alaska. To be fair, when I thought about moving to Vegas, she said that Bailey and Lucky couldn’t survive the wolves but whatever! But I disregarded her concerns (except the camping thing cause let’s face it I don’t do roughing it well)…..I could deal with the bears. Except that I had no plan to deal with the bears since I didn’t plan on seeing them. I had no idea on what their plans are for me. What the heck was I thinking?
My first day of work was the very next day after I arrived. So I get dressed and Jocelyn makes breakfast (because everyone knows I don’t really cook), I walk out the door to see Juneau for the first time. And what a sight it is. To walk out of Jocelyn’s front door and the first thing you see is Thunder mountain? What a beauty!
So let me tell you a little about Juneau.
Juneau is the capital of Alaska with a population of 30,000. Despite the number it really does have a feeling of small town life. People either know their neighbors or know someone who knows someone who knows their neighbors. They are also pretty friendly. Juneau is land locked.You can’t drive here from the States or Canada….you have to come via plane or ferry. It feels like everyone has either a truck, a boat or both. Juneau is also located in a temperate rain forest. At least, that’s what Jocelyn and my co workers tell me after I give my usual bitch/rant of the day. Wow…look its raining! Color me surprised. For the first month, I swear it rained almost every day. What I didn’t know but I know now is that September and October are the rainiest months here in Juneau. So the scenery is beautiful and the people are nice…that’s the beauty and good of Juneau. What is not so good is the food situation.
So let’s talk fast food…there is only a McDonald’s and Subway here in Juneau. I can do McDonald’s but I have never cared for Subway because I always frequented local sub shops like Generous Joe’s in Greenbelt, Md or Wagshalls in DC. There is also not one Chick Fil-A, Chiptole, Wendy’s or Panera. Oh I miss you guys! And trust me, I will visit you when I visit the Lower 48. Apparently there was a Taco Bell that closed despite its popularity. I imagine it was because it was just too darn expensive to get the food up here. The cost of doing business folks the cost of doing business. I have gone to a couple of local places and the food was just okay. I said so to some of my new Juneau friends, and they have recommended a couple of places to try out in the future. So I will report my progress. If you don’t give up on me Juneau, I won’t give up on you.
So for your enjoyment I have included pictures of the Mendenhall Glacier and Sandy Beach. And yes, you are seeing correctly…that is a Blockbuster. Here. In. Juneau.
Oh and for the record, my first 4 weeks and I didn’t see a bear. Well, unless you count that bear in Jonathan’s school cafeteria. Yep, you read that right….it wasn’t a typo.