Monday, July 8, 2024

July 5

 Hilarious morning. No hot water. No one in the office. No one to answer the phone.  Finally, I found a guy doing lawn maintenance with a chainsaw. After considerable time and concentration, he got the water heater going, but by then it was almost 10:00, check out time. 

The next hour was too funny. With us trying to finish bathing and dressing interrupted by one gal from the office coming to remind us about check out; Ben, the chainsaw guy, coming back to make sure everything was ok, and another gal coming to chastise me for not reporting this to the office. All in all, I was glad to be out of there. 

A quick trip to the Gakona School site told the sad tale of another closed village school. 

On to Gulkana Village where many of the Gakona students once lived. We saw no one outside. It was almost spooky. 

On to Glennallen to find almost everything changed. A new school. A fancy new grocery store. A newly remodeled hotel. Two thrift stores. A new bank. Two new churches. But it was just a jumbled mass of buildings with no thought of beautification. It didn’t help that the mountains were completely shrouded.

Then to Copper Center. I knew the lodge burned some time ago. Without it Copper Center has pretty much just dried up. Thank goodness for Jean Sunder’s art gallery. Without it, you wouldn’t even know there was a town.

On down the Silver Springs road, the Copper Center School was closed and abandoned. So very sad!

On into the Silver Springs subdivision. My house from 30 years ago. All the trees are gone as well as the dining room addition. Looks like they are doing some repairs. 

And into a warm hug of love from Marcia and Henry. We spent the next several hours remembering old neighbors and colleagues, visiting sweet memories and just being grateful for our good lives  

Fun fact: the last children I taught in Copper River School District were first graders in Glennallen. They were 7 years old when I left that summer. They are 33 this summer.