"Wait, one more. OK, let's see here; one, two, three, click. Oh, I forgot about this one. Here we go." How many pictures did we have to pose for, anyway? We were standing on the border between Alaska and Canada, which is a favorite photo shoot for us. But this time was different. We had four cameras capturing our images instead of the single photo snap. Technology… I've already written a post on this "blessed curse", so I won't bore you with the electronic logistics. But the fact remains that our 21st century road trip down the Alaska Highway is going much different from when my great-grandparents drove up to visit their military son. Hop in the chugging antique car and patiently endure the dusty ride over miles of wild road through even wilder scenery. Pack some extra gas on the back of your vehicle, as fuel stops are few and far between and sometimes unavailable. Spend the night in small mom & pop roadhouses or hotels (if available), and hit the road again early in the morning.
Even as I write, we're passing Mile 1164 Koidern Roadhouse, just a little ghost building on the side of the Highway. It was probably a bustling little fuel and rest stop when my great-uncle drove this way. Now, it stands all boarded up, a simple memorial to days long gone; history that will soon disappear into the past. We speed on by.
Yes, things are different today. As I sit in the truck writing this blog post, I wonder how people could have ever survived without computers. (although at other times I wish there were no computers) Here I am in a comfortable vehicle, listening to music, watching videos, and writing blog posts. Oh yes, and besides the five cameras (we left one in the car at the border crossing…) we have to "properly" document our trip, we also have two laptops and numerous iPods. You know something's wrong when you have to yell or pull the earbuds (I call them earplugs…) out from the unfortunate person you're trying to get a hold of when they're 3 feet away from you! Not that we're getting bored of the trip yet, but already we have come up with several interesting technological ways to pass the time. While listening to a CD Joel got for his birthday, Caleb and I would sync the computer to the CD. Then we'd listen half to the truck's audio, and half to the computer. We'd also set the computer's audio just a little behind the truck's while listening to one of those old Gospel black quartet songs. That was fun.
OK, I'm back now. We had to stop for the night, and that kind of interrupted my writing… It was a very cozy little parking spot by a small stream, but during the night the temperature dropped drastically. I thought my nose had froze when I woke up this morning! But over all it was a very nice sleep and I'm quite thankful for our travel trailer. We've already seen one grizzly today, but he seemed more interested in eating than anything else.
Oh, for those of you who are wondering why I'm writing this road trip update instead of editing our latest video, I'll tell you why. I have been having serious trouble writing this, as every other letter has to be retyped in order for you to understand what I am trying to say. I'm still not sure who's going to ultimately win in this road vs. Seth writing battle. We are in a certain area between Beaver Creek and Kluane Lake in which the road looks as if it has been bombed by the Japanese. (their final revenge for the road being built, ya know…) We have to go 35 mph in some places to save our poor axles and rockers, but even so the effect does remarkably well in inhibiting my free typing. The connection between the external hard drive (on which the play video is) and the laptop is very touchy, and even a slight bump with my hand will disconnect it and lose all my unsaved changes. It is therefore with deep regret that I announce the futility in trying to edit at this point in time. "When the road becomes smoother and the bumps become fewer…"
Oh wow, I can now see Kluane Lake shimmering in the sunlight. It's beautiful with the translucent green and blue mixing to produce an almost magical color in the water, while half of the lake is still covered with ice. As we continue driving, I'm struck with how much beauty God has put into our world. Even though the Flood destroyed a lot of the original beauty God created; the mountains and glaciers, the lakes and desolate wildernesses, all of its effects are so breathtaking! I know we often say how thankful we are for beauty, but no matter how often we talk of it, it never ceases to amaze and humble me. Yukon wilderness is no exception!
That was neat, we just passed two foxes standing side by side along the edge of the road. Well, I guess I'd better stop writing or you'll be so bored by now that you'll never want to read another blog post from me again. Looks like we're nearing Soldier's Summit now. I couldn't imagine what those guys went through in building this highway… But I'm glad they did! :-)