If you had visitors to Anchorage this summer, I hope they didn’t sprout fungus like my lawn did. It’s so wet that even my skin looks fresh and dewy. Problems with urination? Kiss them goodbye. The constant sound of precipitation is enough to motivate even the most recalcitrant bladder. No worries about forest fires this year but I can’t imagine campfires are doing so well.
I was astounded when it began raining last night. We almost made it through 12 hours.The poor tourists! Not really. Anchorage doesn’t stop being being fun just because of inclement weather or unstable finances. I would like to use this blogging opportunity to suggest my “best of ” Anchorage vacation, a budget deal which would be fun either rain or shine.
I would center my trip around the old favorites terror and uncleanliness as they are usually free. So stay somewhere cheap, like couch surf with someone from an online site. This means you have to offer your couch to a stranger first because then everything is going to be a little less scary. You could drive up here from wherever you live. This would be a frightening waste of gas and large expenditure. You could also destroy the atmosphere by plane pooling with a hundred or so strangers. I say bike, pedal up the Alaskan highway with your tent. Meet bears, wolves and angry truck drivers up close in your nightmares. Then by the time you get to Anchorage even the bearded dude with the axe (chopping wood) who you crash with will look rather tame.
Once you get here you can find plenty of food and drink either at Brother Francis shelter’s Bean’s Cafe or by prostituting, your pick. There’s also day labor and warehouse work where you could meet many fine Alaskans with tales to tell. We are a courteous bunch and one of your co-workers will invite you home sooner than later for a toke or maybe just a cup of coffee and some brownies. This way you can see the real Alaska. If you wind up in Mountainview, you will see the Chugach Range. You could catch a bloody rugby match and Samoan barbeque. Just make sure you make it back to the shelter before the deadline to get a bed or you’re going to have to invest in a really good rain tarp.
It’s also educational to check out some of our public institutions such as the jail, which may let you sleep over for as little as a trespassing charge or the public library where you can wash up if you don’t mind sharing the sink with some like minded locals. There’s even a fountain which acts like a shower outside if you’re feeling frisky. But what am I talking about? It’s probably raining.
There are often free lectures in town listed in the Anchorage Daily News which can be found in any trash bin daily or in the large recycle bins by the curb on designated weekdays. The lectures are a great way to gauge if what you’ve heard about us is true. Are we undereducated and oversexed? Are we concerned with the great issues of the day or still working on the Old Testament? They usually have snacks at lectures. Local funerals can also be entertaining. You don’t have to pretend to be sad. You can make believe you’re the unknown love interest of the deceased. If you’re a good listener you can learn lots. You may even walk out with a new mate. The snacks, of course, are to die for.
Also don’t waste your money on theatre tickets. The best theatre in town is at the auditions. Remember the audition scene in The Full Monty(or was it The Commitments, they’re similar, one is just more naked)? Just sign in to read and enjoy the acting. If you’re male you’ll probably be cast as there are too many men working that weird two weeks on two off shift on the North Slope to be interested in theatre which doesn’t pay. But that’s okay because you can make a move on one of the actresses and then you may get a free place to live!
You may want to check out New Sagaya City Market and The Fire Island bakery just because then you can tell everyone you went there and they will think you are cool. People speak French at some tables outside Fire Island. You could make a splash if when you notice how high the prices are for a chocolate chip cookie ($2.50) you make like Dr. Who and sweep out announcing “Allons y!”
That’s all I can think of for now except that it’s a fun challenge to go to The Bear Tooth or Moose’s Tooth and scoop uneaten slices of pizza off abandoned tables before the bussers get there. Enjoy!