Monday, July 24, 2006

Why is Beth's boyfriend in Alaska? (for Amanda)

For anyone who missed the post in April, my dear S is working an AmeriCorps job in Alaska until October. He is a team leader for SAGA/SAYC, which translates into doing trail work (buidling steps, bridges, clearing trash, digging up weeds or hacking overgrowth, cutting logs, etc.) with his crew of 18-year-olds, serving as a motivator and guide for their growth and maturity as they work toward getting their GEDs (Alaska's school system has a HUGE problem of "brain drain," and dropouts are somewhat common—mostly, the smart ones get bored).

He started in April by flying out to Seattle, taking a bus to Bellingham, then taking the Alaska Marine Highway up the inside Passage to Juneau, then was in Skagway working on the Chilkoot Trail. He's been near Anchorage, in Indian, but this week, his stalwart crew is going out on a job in Eklutna, which is on one of Alaska's two main highways, on the way to a town called Palmer. I've become vaguely familiar with the geography of Alaska while he's been there, and since he was originally told by T-Mobile, our mutual mobile service provider, that he would not have service at all, it has been wonderful to be able to hear from him on a daily (if not sometimes hourly) basis.

He's working hard, getting somewhat buff (or so he tells me), missing me a lot, and overall enjoying himself immensely (I think). He usually sounds pretty happy, but keep him in your prayers if you are the praying type. Anything can go wrong at any time and he's usually miles and miles from civilisation.

He's pretty sure his last day is sometime in early October, though his specific plans for returning to Minnesota are very vague. He bought a round trip ticket but didn't know when his last day of work was at that point, so he's got to change that ticket and find something to do when he's back in my area. I'm very relieved to realize that it is nearing the end of July. Fall has never looked so good.


chaviva said...

Ahh! What a cool locale for AmeriCorps! You know Mel is doing AmeriCorps in Aurora, Col.? I can't tell if she REALLY likes it or not.

Thank you for the post! Weee! I thought "I should search old blog entries!" and then I got really lazy. Any plans to visit him ...? :)

melanie said...

oops. i guess somehow i thought you magically knew about my blog without my telling you. silly me. well i am glad you are a reader now :) i've been enjoying yours very much so.