Saturday, December 15, 2012

Side-Post: Hugs

Last month my sister died, whom I’d never really gotten to know.
I wish I’d been a better brother.

Then last week a friend here in Fairbanks committed suicide.
I’ve been wishing that I’d been a better neighbor.

Yesterday at least twenty children were shot.
I wish I were a better citizen.

I’m angry as hell, and very sad, but that’s easy: it’s always love that I struggle with the most. Makes me wish I was a better person, and I’m working on it, but sometimes it’s hard.

Every day so far at my new job for the past couple of weeks I’ve been seeing chronic inebriates trying to stay warm at subzero temperatures or passing out in our foyer. It hurts to see.

Sometimes when working at the drawing board, or getting lost in the woods, in the pages of a book or in a good movie, I don't want to rejoin the real world, because
it can be such a ugly, bad, scary place. Other times it’s funny, worth a laugh, and I try to share that in my own way.

Regardless, it’ll be a tough winter and holiday season for many friends, neighbors, and strangers. Sometimes it’s the little things that might count the most, and unfortunately for too many we find out too late..

When it came right down to it, what I missed most about Alaska were the people. What I miss most about Maine, Western New York, Savannah, hell, even Palmer, is the people I met, spent time with, and got to know.

Back in the Interior, we just got hammered with a foot of snow, and temperatures are forecast to bottom out at fifty degrees below zero over the weekend. But while shoveling a path to the outhouse I paused to think about how underneath all the snow, and the shit, life will push up again, and after the cold and dark passes another season of growing will start anew.

Peninnah Curtis March 30, 1964 - October 27, 2012

So everybody please remember to keep an eye out for each other, offer a hand, a shoulder, an ear or hug. Please don’t forget someone’s always got your back and that no matter how lousy things might seem, you are loved, and don’t ever hesitate to ask for help.

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