When we first arrived in Anchorage, literally the first thing every person would say upon hearing our plan to move in a year was everybody says that, but no one ever leaves Alaska. In our true
humble fashion, we were still laughing (scoffing?) at this the day we pulled our packed out UFO trailer out of town. However, as the weeks have passed and we dream of fall in Alaska, we are starting to realize… they were right. It doesn’t take long and Alaska grabs ahold of you. We’re homesick already. As a tribute– and as usual, a memory-jogger for my future elderly self– we are posting a slew photos from that time the young Murphmans brazenly spent just one year in Alaska.
Late Summer 2015
We were in awe of the natural beauty, probably smiling like fools every time we went outside. We couldn’t get enough of the mountains. Tyler started working at his dream job– baking bread– while I considered how to set up our apartment, and how to keep the sunlight out of the bedroom at night.
We continued to enjoy the outdoors, and we also began to reach out and get involved in our community. It was exciting to meet new people and begin to feel at home in our city. We weren’t sure that we would get a nice autumn season, but it turned out to be gorgeous.
This season started earlier than we were used to, with the first snowfall arriving before Halloween. Although there was a disappointing lack of snow overall, we loved seeing the mountains slowly blanketed with white. We did a little skiing and ice skating, and we had fun adventuring out of town to find a “Charlie Brown” Christmas tree in the wild.
We took a break-from-winter vacation– a foray into the world of snowbirds– to the lower 48 to see my parents in SC and Tyler’s parents in FL. We loved the sudden sunshine and little bit of warmth.
Spring arrived, and with it the thawing of our bones and the refreshing of our minds. We were looking forward to our next adventure in Europe, but trying to stay rooted in our current home. The mountains didn’t shock us at every turn, but we still loved getting to know Alaska during this season where everything seems new in a way that Spring in a place with less severe winters doesn’t know. We experienced our first few weekends out on the water, and Tyler was convinced he needed his own boat soon 🙂
I opened the summer with a trip to Hawaii to reunite with my sister, and she returned with me to make us a family of three for a few months. We began to spend every free weekend out on the water or up in the mountains, and we bonded even more with our closest friends in Alaska. It was so nice to have a circle of community, even though we could feel the end coming near. We learned how hard it is to walk the line of planning for the future and living in the moment, and overall we erred on the side of present-living. We don’t regret a thing, as Alaska in the summer is intense and brilliant.
Despite ignoring the impending move, it of course came right on time. We took family photos for our house sitting account, packed our sunny apartment, said goodbye to our dear friends, and headed out of Alaska.
And that’s a wrap! We loved our year in Anchorage, and I feel more homesick for that place than any other place I’ve lived. I don’t know that we will ever return to settle there, but if all the prophesies of those countless Alaskans come to pass, we will be called back to spend the rest of our stationary years nestled between the mountains and sea. We’ll see…