Monday, November 21, 2005

City dweller

One thing I'm still adjusting to in Alaska is wildlife - or, more specifically, the wildlife that adapts to urban life. Living stateside, people usually never think twice about the animals that occupy their space. Many even regard them with outright disgust. I used to watch my hopelessly awkward cat stalk squirrels almost as large as she was and laugh. Or I'd smile in passing as a humming bird buzzed by. Moments like that felt basic, domestic - they never changed the outcome of my day. But here, all you need to do is glance outside, and often you'll see something that has the ability to trample or maul you to death, or that has national notriety second only to the Flag ... "oh, another moose is walking down the road." "A bear stepped on my car!" "Hmmm ... looks like one of those $#&! bald eagles landed on the power box again." Alaskans yawn. I'm still caught off guard.

I didn't want this to become the "Gee Whiz" journal of an Outsider who doesn't own anything in flannel and still visualizes sundaes when the term "Arctic Circle" is thrown into casual conversation. But, still ... it's kinda cool.