My Kinda’ Politician


Politics are not my thing. However, the combative tenure of the elections occurring in Alaska and Wyoming today is discouraging. Radical contention has replaced reasonable compromise. The “One Nation Under God” our founding fathers envisioned is sadly becoming two nations under political division.

As an octogenarian I’ve been privileged to witness times when “reaching across the aisle” was often the political norm, not the exception, and I grieve for the political tenure our children are inheriting. I continue to pray for our Nation’s leaders in both parties to contemplate their agendas with a “We” not “Me” focused perspective.

That said, I came across the story below about a former politician whose “We” political perspective was refreshingly encouraging, and pass it along optimistic that our Nation can come together and heal  . . .

If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”

2 Chronicles 7:14

Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia

During the worst days of Great Depression and all of World War II, five-foot 4-inch Fiorello LaGuardia was the mayor of New York City. A colorful character, dubbed the “Little Flower” by his adoring constituents for the carnation he always wore in his lapel, he was known to ride New York City fire engines; accompany the police on speakeasy raids; take entire orphanages to baseball games; and read the Sunday funnies to children on the radio whenever the New the New newspapers were on strike.

One bitterly cold, January night in 1935 mayor LaGuardia showed up at a night court in the city’s poorest ward. Dismissing the judge for the evening he took over the bench. A raggedy old woman, charged with stealing a loaf of bread was brought before him. Pleading her case, she told the mayor her sick daughter and two children had been abandoned by her husband, and her grandchildren were starving.

The shopkeeper from whom she had stolen the bread refused to drop the charges. “It’s a bad neighborhood your Honor. She needs to be punished to teach people around here a lesson!

LaGuardia sighed and addressed the woman. “I’ve got to punish you. The law makes no exceptions. Ten dollars or ten days in jail.” As he pronounced the sentence he reached into his pocket and tossed a 10 dollar bill into his famous sombrero.

Here’s the ten dollar fine, which I now remit; furthermore, I am going to fine everyone in this courtroom fifty cents for living in a town where a person has to steal bread so that her grandchildren can eat. Mr. Bailiff, collect the fines and give them to the defendant.”


The next day New York City newspapers reported $47.50 was collected and given to the gratefully bewildered old lady who had stolen a loaf of bread to feed her starving grandchildren, 50 cents of which was contributed to the embarrassed, red-faced shopkeeper. The seventy some petty criminals, people with traffic violations, and New York City policemen present in the courtroom that evening, each who had paid 50 cents the mayor ordered, gave him a standing ovation.

Keep Looking Up . . . His Best is Yet to Come!

Termination Dust and Eagles


Termination Dust #1

A friend in the Lower 48 brought a smile to my face when they asked, “What is determination dust?”

It’s called termination dust, and refers to the first snow that appears on Alaskan mountaintops signaling the end of summer. Actually, termination dust is an oxymoronic term . . . many Last Frontier mountains are covered with snow year round.

Anyhoo . . . I stepped out on the deck this morning to snap a couple pics of this ‘dust’ you can ski on for those of you who may not have experienced it. As I did so, an eagle was soaring above the mountains about a mile away . . . far beyond the range my basic $300 35mm camera’s capabilities of capturing with any clarity. But  . . . for youse guys blessed with ‘eagle eye’ vision . . . see if you can spot our national symbol in the Termination Dust #1 pic before viewing the Termination Dust and Eagle pic. If you’re still having difficulty seeing ‘ole’ Baldy, I hear Wal *Mart  is offering a special on glasses with a free vision exam

Each time I see an eagle, His assurance in Isaiah 40:31 comes to mind:

But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagle; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.”

After nearly 80 years on the planet, walking has become a tad easier than running, but waiting is still not my forte

Keep Looking Up . . . His Best is Yet to Come!

Termination Dust and Eagle
Termination Dust #2
Distant Eagle

Glorious!


The rains have ended.  From the deck I stood in silent wonder as my Abba tucked in another day brushing this awe-inspiring masterpiece across the heavens. I M Blessed . . . May U B 2

The heavens declare His righteousness, and all the people see His glory.” – Psalm 97:6

Keep Looking Up . . . His Best is Yet to Come!

Glorious!

Sunset Spruce

Rainy Day Reflections


August ‘Termination Dust’ – Chickaloon, Alaska

For the past three days the sun has taken a hiatus from the Last Frontier. Continual, confining drizzles have taken up residence, raising creeks and dampening spirits. As an ole retired dude, I’ve a favorite dampening antidote . . . curling up with a book until the sun returns from vacation. Turning pages by the fire . . . it’s 49 degrees here, with fresh ‘termination dust’ on the mountain summits . . . this sobering quote by an unknown author rose from the page:

We’ve learned how to make a living, but not a life.

We’ve added years to our lives, but not life to our years.

We’ve cleaned up the air but polluted our soul.

We’ve split the atom, but not our prejudice.

We plan more but accomplish less.

We’ve learned to rush, but not to wait.

These are days of quick trips, disposable diapers, throw-away morality, one-night stands, overweight bodies, and pills that do everything from cheer, to quiet, to kill.

It’s a time when there’s much in the show window and nothing in the stockroom.

Penned nearly two decades ago, these words poignantly describe today’s hectic, chaotic, divided world. Regretfully, we’ve come a long way the wrong way.

Whoa Freddy !!! . . . time to get out of the drizzle and ponder more positive musings.

Of all the countless blessings living in the Greatland offers, two of my favorites are the Solitude and Silence this rugged, vast stretch of wilderness provides. ‘S’ & ‘S’ aren’t luxuries, they’re mental health essentials!

Often, when wandering through His mountain cathedrals, an old hymn written in 1889 drifts into my thoughts:

This is my Father’s world,
And to my listening ears
All nature sings and round me rings
The music of the spheres.
This is my Father’s world:
I rest me in the thought
Of rocks and trees, of skies and seas–
His hand the wonders wrought.

This is my Father’s world:
The birds their carols raise,
The morning light, the lily white,
Declare their Maker’s praise.
This is my Father’s world:
He shines in all that’s fair;
In the rustling grass I hear Him pass,
He speaks to me everywhere.

This is my Father’s world:
O let me ne’er forget
That though the wrong seems oft so strong,
God is the Ruler yet.

This is my Father’s world:
Why should my heart be sad?
The Lord is King: let the heavens ring!
God reigns; let earth be glad!

Hey . . . guess what? . . . he rain is still coming down outside, but the sun has come back out inside😊. The dampening antidote of curling up with a book works!  Time to get up outta’ the Lazy Boy and put another log on the fire.

Keep Looking Up . . . His Best is Yet to Come!

Feathered Friends


A pair of trumpeter swans, a grebe, and a loon were my drizzling mist companions on a tranquil canoe paddle on the lake this afternoon . . . a relaxing backyard trek well worth to getting wet for 😊

The boundary lines for me have fallen in favorable places” -Psalm 16:16

Keep Looking Up . . . His Best is Yet to Come!

Trumpeter Swans
Grebe
Loon

Castle Mountain Mists – Chickaloon, Alaska

‘Looney’ Tunes


Canoeing in a light drizzle across the lake yesterday, a pair of Gavia immer serenaded me. The melancholic warbling call of the common loon is the call of the wilderness.   . . . a tranquil respite that was mine to embrace in troubled world.  I M Blessed . . . May U B 2

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”

John 14:27

Keep Looking Up . . . His Best is Yet to Come!

Gavia immer
Loon Pair
Loon Stretch

The Call


I heeded John Muir’s motto today … “The mountains are calling and I must go”… across the lake, Castle Mountain whispered my name.

The trek up took a tad longer than usual. Yes, I’m a year older since my last climb, but I suspect sampling the ripening blueberries along the trail accounted for some extra climb time 😊

Scolding squirrels, chirping birds, a soaring eagle, and a lone moose were my only companions journeying through a wilderness ablaze with fireweed and other wildflower blooms. Distant snow-caps and glistening glaciers beckoned future hikes to conquer… my paradise this side of heaven!

On top, mountain breezes chased clouds across the endless vista as I sat in awe, listening as creation silently spoke “Be still and know that I am God” to my soul … an escape from the world’s busyness I wish each of you could enjoy.

Returning home this evening I was greeted by a lovingly prepared, fresh, scrumptious halibut dinner … Life is good and I am blessed beyond measure! … May you be also.

Keep Looking Up . . . His Best is Yet to Come!

Blueberry Snack
Blue Beauty
Castle Mountain Meadow
Distant Snow-caps
Chugach Range Glacier
Fireweed Up High
Mountain Vista
“Be still and know …”

Evening Splendor


With the summer solstice a month past, the Last Frontier is losing 5 minutes of daylight every 24 hours. The good news, the glow of the aurora borealis will soon become visible in the night sky.  

This evening I watched in wonder from our deck as the sun set over the mountains. I M Blessed . . . May U B 2 

From the rising of the sun to the place where it sets, the name of the Lord is to be praised.” – Psalm50:1 

10:30 PM

11 PM

Windy Wander


Early morning rains gave way to 50-60 mph wind gusts as Grant and I hiked up above tree line in Arctic Valley today. Unlike my son, I didn’t have to be concerned about the wind messing up my hair 😊. . . Fun Day! 

The wind blows to the south and turns to the north; round and round it goes, ever returning to its course.  – Ecclesiastes 1:6 

Arctic Valley Fireweed

Barber Needed 😊

Arctic Valley Vista

Happy Hiker