It's been a while since my sister has been able to post any new content, but the Alaskan Bush signal has been extra difficult the past few months. So, she wanted me to put up a notice to let her readers know that as soon as the signal is operational again she will be creating new blogs for you. In the meantime please follow her Twitter account where she is able to tweet on a daily basis: https://twitter.com/neilson_tara?lang=en
Posted by Taras sister,
Megan (hailing from sunny Florida where the signal works just fine :)
I've been trying to get a blog to my sister to post from Florida as per usual, but technical problems and an extremely poor signal have made that difficult, so I thought I'd try to send off a short one just to let everyone know what's going on, and to apologize for my delays in responding to emails.
We're working on our floathouses, hoping to get them in the best shape possible before we get any snow fall that sticks. Yes, I wrote about doing the same thing last winter, but we have to do this every year because that's the nature of floathouses. They're always losing flotation for one reason or another. My oldest brother Jamie, who also lives in a floathouse, was visiting the other day and describing all of his plans to get his place into snowfall shape, too.
A few weeks before that, I was sitting at my laptop, writing on my memoir, when my whole house shook so hard that things fell off the walls. This was right around the time of the big earthquake up in Anchorage, which wouldn't normally affect us at this distance, but earthquakes were on my mind. But when I checked outside to see what kind of damage was done, I found that a vital piece of my flotation had broken, dropping the back of my float about six inches underwater.
I couldn't leave it like that, but with our early nights I didn't have much time to do anything too permanent. Still, I rounded up extra foam, a heavy board, a drill, a spike, and a sledgehammer while my dad quickly put together q partial cradle to keep the foam in place. I managed to get the new piece of flotation in place just before darkness fell, but I need to work on something more permanent.
So that's what we're busy with right now. Usually it's pouring down rain and blowing a gale so I can't take pictures, which is why I'm posting a couple of dawn photos of the little tidal bight we live in on a gloriously unrainy, unwindy day--something we haven't seen in weeks. Hopefully the technical and signal issues get fixed soon and I can post a regular blog. Thanks for everyone's patience!
It's that time of the year when bears are everywhere. Thirteen-year-old A.C. Darden who comes and stays with us frequently told me that the day before she came to visit there was a black bear down on the dock at the nearby village. Fortunately there aren't that many tourist vessels in yet and the summer people are still sparse so there was no interaction.
My dad, A.C.'s brother, and I went over to work on the dam a few days ago and found that a bear had been there, too. While I was gone the bear had ripped the pump off the dam and chomped into almost every piece of plastic around, including oil jugs and the container we use to prime the pump. Fortunately he didn't bite the pump itself, or the waterline. He did carry off our can of ether, though, that we use to get the balky pump engine started. I pictured him passed out somewhere in the woods after puncturing the can.
Apparently, though, it didn't keep him down for long--either that or there's another bear around--because two days ago my dad saw a black bear near the beach that has a good signal, where I go to send my blog posts.
Not wanting to make the bear's acquaintance, even though I go everywhere with a .44 strapped to my hip these days, I've decided to just send off this short blog post explaining why my longer post about my trip back from Juneau will be delayed--it's on a bear hold.
(If you want to read about what took me to Juneau and the trip up there here's a link to my column that talks about it: http://juneauempire.com/capitalcityweekly/ccw-columns/2018-05-23/alaska-real: wilderness-nanny-interrupted.)
Sorry for the shortness of this post, but I have to use as few photos as possible so it will send from my house. I'm willing to brave deep snow, gales, and pouring rain to send off blog posts, but I'm not willing to face this:
Tara Neilson (ADOW)