Fairbanks, AK

We resided in Fairbanks for 10 days. During which time, many activities filled our schedule. The first half of our stay we got to enjoy an RV park with full hook ups.* Although having this rare privilege was enough reason to celebrate, I was especially excited because a meet up was planned. Reuniting with old friends, and meeting new, one of my favorite parts of traveling full time. We broke bread together one night and I paused for a moment to dwell in this moment of special community.
Photo credit Heather Ledeboer 
I also walked my first 10K! (Let me pat myself on the back real quick.) I finished just under two hours. As I neared the finish line it was as if time slowed to a crawl. My focus shifted from finishing to soaking in the moment. I remember hearing the sound of the crowd cheering, but my brain distanced the sound, it was to busy sponging up the moment. The sight of the huge LED clock warped me back into time and I got a second wind. I ran a little faster, pushing my aching body to fight to the finish. As my dad and I crossed the finish line, I had a rush of emotions. I felt pure exhaustion, I mean it was midnight after all. I also felt warm and satisfied with myself. I had just completed a 10K. As this sunk in, I felt extremely proud of myself and my friends. From our group, only Mrs. Ledeboer had completed a 10K before, so this was a pretty big deal. But then, the feeling of self accomplishment was tucked away, and was replaced with feelings of pain and hunger. I was no longer certain that my feet could hold up my body, but knowing I was soon be able to rest helped. Desperately craving a cheeseburger, I pondered where the nearest five guys was... My brain said Canada. So I settled for fruit and an energy bar. (The photo below was taken at midnight! Crazy how light it is right??)
WE DID IT!!!!! Photo credit Heather Ledeboer
We also tried the seventh best ice cream** in the world. It was good, but nothing can compare with Marianne's Ice Cream in Santa Cruz, California. I'm sorry, I don't have a photo of the ice cream, I ate it to fast...

What I Learned
Many thoughts churned in my head as we explored Fairbanks, Alaska. Our time in Fairbanks was valuable to me because I learned some things about myself that I'm not sure I would have, had we not stopped for a while. As I reflected on our stay I realized that while I had definitely enjoyed our stay, I was ready to leave the big city and be out in God's beautiful creation again. (Also known as hitch-itch) Don't understand? That's ok, let me explain.
Fairbanks felt similar to my home in California in the sense that there were a lot of people***. The people were kind, but I longed for the pleasure that had become a normality to me. The blessing of boon docking in the middle of nowhere with a beautiful view and nice fishing (and internet if I'm lucky) had become so regular that I had started to take it for granted. So, if I'm being honest, I learned two things in Fairbanks. First, I learned how much I have enjoyed the pleasure of boon docking and how it has enriched my life. I love waking up in the morning to towering mountains, wild animals, rivers, you name it!! Second, I was reminded not to take things for granted. This life style, this Alaskan summer is spectacular, but it won't last forever. I need to take advantage of the time I have and experience it to the fullest.

* Our summer expedition through Canada and Alaska has helped me appreciate our time in RV parks. In which we are spoiled with full hookups, and the ability to receive Amazon packages. As this has been a rarity through out our summer, we were ready to embrace and enjoy this pleasure to the fullest. 

** The ledeboers found a list of the "10 best ice cream places in the World" and the seventh best just happened to be in Fairbanks.

*** Fun fact!! The town where I'm from (San Jose, CA) has a substantially greater population than the entire state of Alaska!!! San Jose has over a million people, whereas the whole state of Alaska has about 700,000 people!! 

Comments

  1. Congrats on finishing the 10K!! That's so awesome!!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you! It was an awesome achievement, and I'm glad I was able to experience it with friends!

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  2. I enjoyed reading your take on Fairbanks and I can understand your takeaway as I felt some of those same feelings myself!

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  3. Wise beyond your years! Every day is a gift. Enjoy it to the fullest and may you never tire of God's beautiful creation.

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