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Showing posts from May, 2008
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So, set-netting! Awesome day. Helped my Native buddy with his set-net. Caught a number of great Kings. Bennie got some and the Elders got some. I can't believe the vacation is almost over. Next week I am going to Ketchikan to cover the court calendar down there. When I get back though, I have a number of major felony trials expected to go. I am not sure how I am going to fit all people I am expected to host in with the work I have to do. To be honest, that may be the worst part of being a public defender: I could NOT get work out of my head today. All I can think about is the trials coming up and the clients that need attention. Damnit.
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So, I had the most amazing moment today. It had nothing to do with my vacation. I was walking with Kadee down the road. I had to pick her up. The sunlight was streaming through her blond hair. She was laughing. And I was acutely aware that the moment would only last a few seconds. The bills in the kitchen were forgotten. All the world was gone. Except for looking down at my laughing little girl with the sunlight streaming through her hair. God, I love her.
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So, partial sucess! We got the boat out and running. These are rare pictures indeed. Because at the end of the trip, it was clear that something was wrong. Once again, it is back at the shop. Am frustrated. Do I sell it? There is a hell of an argument there. Or do I keep it and hope this is it? I can't keep throwing money at it....am broke. But damnit I didn't want to live in Alaska without a boat. Hopefully it gets fixed and off we go. The vacation is going by fast.
So, we decided that was enough boating for one weekend and went Rhinoing. Awesome. 2/3 of us on the trip flipped our machines. Including the Rhino. Wish we had gotten a picture of G and I strapped into a flipped Rhino. The problem was the mud. It is like peanut butter. It just caught our wheel and flipped us on the side. No damage was done and it was pretty funny. Well, off for another day of Alaska adventure. Despite the broken boat and the high cost of fuel and all the rest of it, I wouldn't trade this for a…
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So, the first day of vacation started at 5 a.m. By 7 or so the boat was on fire. And taking on water. Panic ensued. Everything that could fail, did. First, the hose shown here burned. Then the boat started taking on water. The bilge pump failed. So I started my new "emergency kicker", which promptly stopped working. Turned out the fuel valve was shut off. I remember hearing someone yell "call somebody!". The response? "Who do I call?". Silence. We prepared to swim. G was eyeing his weapons, wondering if the gun case would float. Vince put on his life jacket. I was on the swim deck in ice cold water on my knees. I finally figured out the kicker had no fuel and got us into shore. We had gallons of water on board. Almost as much water in the boat as beer in our bloodstream. Wow. A few guys on board were pissed at me.
Like I wanted a fire on board. Besides the engine was under water soon anyways. And the new kicker Gomes bought, saved the boat. And G's 7…
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So, a busy weekend. I find that I can easily work another 8 hours after work at this time of year. It is light, and I mean light, until 11 p.m. Soon, I will be able to stay outside to 2 am. J and I fight about whether the kids should have a routine. I say no. This time is going to pass us by so quickly. I can watch Kadee sit by the fire and chase chickens and dogs and grow, or she can sleep and I can miss it all. Summer in Alaska is so short. So Kadee stays up until 11 p.m. at least. I know, I know. I can hear all the arguments against it. Many of the things that I was lamenting in my last post are on the way to repair. The garden is about ready to fully plant. Got the greenhouse up today. Got a thanksgiving turkey and 6 laying chickens growing away in the spare bathtub. Got new tires on the boat. Of course when I jacked it up a support in the trailer that was rotten gave way! I don't have the equipment to fix it. So back to the shop it goes. I have to laugh, it's only money …
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So, I had one of those days. It just seems like everything in my life is broken or about to break. It started when I went to take the studded tires off of J's car. I learned that, despite the fact that the other tires only have about 20,000 miles on them, they are worn out. So I need to come up with $360 by Thursday, when it becomes illegal to have studded tires on a car. The dishwasher crapped out. The fridge died. The Rhino is in the shop. The blinkers on my car died and it is leaking oil like the Exxon Valdez. Half the plants we planted for our garden died. The water out to the brewery is still frozen (?). The vaccum broke. The boat needs new tires and some new parts on the trailer. The house just seems in chaos. This month, between the need for new visas, some insurance bills, medical bills and things breaking, I had to borrow almost $3000 on a line of credit. At 13.5 %. OK breathe. Deeply. None of this matters. The chicken house got done last night. The garden was wor…
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So, I'm back. Despite all the stress, my new TN visa was approved without difficulties. Now I have to come up with $300 tomorrow for J's visa. It just never, ever ends. I am back a day early as the process went faster than I expected. Partly that is due to the fact that G was supposed to join me. As usual, he had a flaky excuse about "trial" or something.

I had a great time camping and took the time to enjoy this part of Alaska. Next year, even though I can do it by mail, I think I would like the four of us to do this trip. Trust me, pictures cannot do any justice to this part of the world. I'll just make it our yearly trip until this country gets its head out of its ass and enacts some meaningful immigration reform. The family is all well and it is time to go spend some time with them.

P.S. Jeremy, here is the entrance to Nebesna road, where we will doing our wilderness adventure this summer. Gives you some idea, but wait til you see this my friend. It just takes …
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So, tomorrow I make my second run to the border. Time to apply for a TN visa. Last year I did it in about 26 hours of straight driving. This year I am not doing that again. I am taking the camping gear and taking my time. Part of me dreads going for 4 days and leaving my family. But I have no choice but to go and doing it without stopping made me sick last year. Part of me is excited, as the drive between Glennallen and the border may be my favorite place on earth. To help get over the depression that choked my heart and mind this past winter I made a list of the things I am going to do between May 1 and October 1. Going to border, camping and hunting rabbits is one of the first things on it. Not that we need the meat now. The moose got butchered but it took two nights after work. My freezer is almost completely full of moose, shee fish, halibut, ling cod, salmon, trout, black bear, caribou and spruce grouse. It's pretty cool. Anyways, I had better go. I want to spend so…
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So, the snow is almost gone. Is it time to panic? Why yes it is. Because the snow will be back in a few months. So today, I focused on meat and wood. My day started at 5 am with a road kill moose. That is my fifth road kill since getting here. A couple of buddies (thankfully) helped and it only took a couple of hours to get from the roadside into the truck. After it was skinned and in the meat locker, I went and got almost a 5 gallon pail full of clams with some friends. Then it was time to work in the garden and cut firewood. Sweet. My hands are cut and sore. My back aches. But, once again, I am amazed to be here in Alaska. A few years back I lamented the decision of Hudson v. Michigan 547 U.S. 586, where the U.S Supreme Court ignored centuries of law to please the new masters at the helm. On Friday the Alaska Court of Appeals in State v. Berumen ( at http://www.state.ak.us/courts/ops/ap-2164.pdf ) said that decision was too limiting for Alaska. In Alaska, cops need to give notice be…