So my first ‘real’ post is going to be about Anchorage, because it was awesome (though not as awesome as Seward). Pretty much the first thing you see when the plane is descending is mountains, and you will probably not lose site of those mountains the entire time you are walking around (or driving to Seward). I just can’t get over it; I mean, there are mountains in New York, but they are nowhere near as awesome as these.

If you couldn’t tell, I liked the mountains. Just a little bit.

The airport was really cool, but a little lacking in basic comforts. Not really a whole lot to eat, which normally might not be so bad. Except I stayed up pretty much the whole night. And waited until about 9 in the morning. Oh, did I mention I came in at 8 PM? Yeah. Fun times.

There was a Starbucks though, and with wireless internet I was able to keep entertained. Of course, if those ceased to amuse me, I could just take pictures of the mountains until the sun set, which was at about 11 PM. Yup, that’s right. The sun doesn’t set until very late over here…

And then there was the taxidermy. Oh, the taxidermy. Everything from bears to bobcats to albino beavers. If when human civilization collapses, the next race finds the Anchorage airport intact, complete with taxidermy, it would give them nightmares about the hairless demons who hollow you out and display you for public amusement. MUAHAHAHAHA.

I kid of course; everybody I’ve met here is really awesome, including the good folks who work the Seward Bus Line. I was picked up from the airport by a Puerto Rican immigrant named Manny, and he drove me around the area to show me where the good restaurants and all other necessities of the city were located. He and his wife Nancy personally recommended a quirky place called the Moose’s Tooth Pub and Pizzeria. I was not disappointed at all; the home-brewed beer was rich and full-bodied, and the pizza was better than a lot of pizza’s I’ve had in New York.

Oh don’t worry, I didn’t forget to look for birds (really, who do you think I am?). One of the first birds I saw in Alaska (apart from Herring Gulls) was a friendly little Black-Billed Magpie who apparently has befriended Nancy ever since she let him in from the cold and fed him one day. I first saw him flying about the parking lot, and then he hopped in when the door was left open. No pictures…my camera batteries were dead at that point 😦

Other birds I saw included Dark-Eyed Juncos, Osprey, and an uncooperative White-Crowned Sparrow, who I got a 4-second video of before he flew off, after about 5 minutes of coaxing him out of a bush. Can’t post that on WordPress, but it’s on Facebook. Or shoot me an e-mail at cog889@aol.com.

Anchorage also has an Asian Market, not a grand one mind you, but still pretty impressive. What really impressed me was their seafood selection (though I suppose I really shouldn’t have been surprised); live oysters and clams of various sorts, and some of the most massive lobsters I have ever seen.

So that’s pretty much it for Anchorage. I’ll tell you a  little bit about the drive to Seward and my first 24 hours here or so in my next post. Until then, have a good morning…or in the case of you in the east, good afternoon (it’s a four-hour time difference).

Total Alaska Life Bird Count: 1 (Black-Billed Magpie).

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