Reality check: This is happening!

The move to Alaska progresses.

Yesterday, the movers picked up our belongings, and they’ll be shipped to Alaska via Seattle.*

Dale’s cousin Brett was kind enough to let us store our belongings in his home for a few months, so we’ve been in Austin for the past week, prepping and planning.

Here was the temperature in Austin on Monday:


And then in Seward:


We’ve some acclimating to do…

This is one of the biggest moves we’ve ever made and yet it’s been surprisingly easy.  We’ve had moves within the same neighborhood that were more stressful!  This is true for several reasons:

First, the company I’ll be working for is being ridiculously good to me and making the process as pain-free as possible.

It also helps that we don’t own much anymore, just the remnants of what we got rid of last summer plus a few new purchases.  It amounts to less than a guest room full of stuff, and when you don’t have much to move, the task of packing will obviously be less painful.



We’ve also grown accustomed to uncertainty over the past twelve months.  Last year at this time we were halfway through our hike on the Camino del Norte, in Spain.  When we got back to the U.S., we ended up spending an unexpected amount of time with family in Texas.  And then in July we took off on an open-ended road trip.  Throughout this time, we had no idea where we’d finally end up.

All along, we’ve worked on letting go.  This is a really hard thing to do, especially for me–I worry way too much about what-ifs and worse case scenarios, but so very little is actually under our control, and if we keep a strangle-hold on events, situations, and outcomes, trying to control every detail, it causes stress and closes us off to unexpected opportunities.  Learning how to let go of expectations and accept the unknown has allowed Dale and I to be open to the many possibilities that exist in front of us, and it’s this attitude that brought us to Alaska.  If we had gone into the road trip with expectations of where we’d end up, we might not have figured out that it’s Alaska where we want to be.

The next challenge is finding a place to live, no small task, as tiny Seward is a busy tourist town in the summer but shuts down in the winter.  We fly to Alaska next week and will have a little time to get settled before I start my job.  On the Camino and during our camping trip, the need to find shelter was always something that made me particularly anxious, but I’m trying to stick to the lessons I talked about above–holding onto things loosely and trusting that, no matter what, we won’t be sleeping outside all winter.


Incidentally, this is our hundredth blog post.  We started this blog in August of last year while in Europe so that we could share our experiences with friends and family.  It’s been fun to write about the places we loved as well as the lessons we’ve learned during our year of floating along on random currents.  (Ha! Had to throw that in somewhere!)

Even though we’re now settling down in one place for a while, creating these posts has brought me so much joy that I intend to keep writing about life in Alaska–which will provide endless material, I’m sure–and I haven’t even gotten around to blogging about Santa Fe and Flagstaff and Madrid; however, I think I’ll save posts about these warm, sunny cities until the middle of February, when we’re buried in snow!

CORRECTION: Originally, I had written the following: “Our boxes will be taken to the coast, placed on a boat, and shipped to Alaska via the Panama Canal.  If only those boxes could talk; the stories they might tell.”  Unfortunately, we found out later that our stuff was going through Seattle, not the Panama Canal.  Not nearly as interesting, so the stories our boxes told would likely be kinda boring.  Good thing they can’t talk.