Wednesday, July 12, 2017


When I was two years old I tagged along with my dad to visit a scout camp. He says he lifted me onto a big pile of plowed snow, and I looked around with my hands on my hips and said, "Just what I've always wanted. Real adventure."

Fast-forward to my breakfast meeting at Denny's with Kindal. We had an offer to intern together for the summer in Juneau, and it was imperative that we included a stack of pancakes in our decision making. This was a big deal. I had just spent my freshman year at BYU and Provo turned out to be the last place I wanted to spend my summer. Kindal had been at SUU that year and needed to explore outside of Cedar. We wanted an adventure, and we wanted it together.

So we decided to go. Suddenly we were (and I hated to admit this because of my red rock loyalty) in possibly the most beautiful place I'd ever seen. And it was quickly obvious that we had found what we were looking for, plus more.

We hiked. Saw bears. Kayaked. Spent a few nights in a small cabin outside of town on the shore, where we were literally woken up by the sound of whales breathing. Chopped wood. Ziplined. Watched every existing episode of The Office. Explored ice caves. Stayed up until 3 a.m. just because we'd forget the days didn't get dark until then, so nothing stopped our talks and laughing. Ran races. Broke into hotel gyms so Kindal could steal treadmill time and keep her running scholarship. Ate a lot of halibut. Played with husky puppies training for sled races. Painted. Watched whales. Swam by a glacier. Said no to drugs. Drove around town ditching trash in random dumpsters since we didn't pay for pick up. Met nice girls. Met mean girls. Met boys. Played music. Brought each other Costco churros to work. Went to parties. Drove a Pathfinder. Made new friends. Solidified being forever friends.

And sold stuff. Stuff that changed color in the sun.

Sure, the bus driver guys teased us that our job was called an "internship". And yeah, Del Sol isn't the most impressive line on my resume. And we definitely got sick of that color-changing demo.

But that summer changed us, and I'll stand by that trite sentence with everything in me. We found adventure and we learned about ourselves. Most importantly, Juneau just left us wanting more. And we both went on to find it.

This post is part of my 8-minute memoir series, following the prompts from author Ann Dee Ellis. You can read more about the project here. This series is an effort to keep writing in my routine, keep a record of my life, and keep my spirits high. 

"I write because I don't know what I think until I read what I say." - Flannery O'Connor.

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