Sunday, June 14, 2009

life of an intern

i keep getting questions from home like, "So, tell me about Alaska." or, "What do you do...exactly?"

First thing's first. Alaska and its islands can stretch from coast to coast of the lower 48. It is MASSIVE and I get to experience a chunk of it while basing out of the Kenai Peninsula. Pretty much anything you read, watch, look at, or hear will entice you to make your way north to the land of eternal sunshine, eternal rain, and final frontiers. There are no guarantees. It might rain for days on end. You might burn your skin off in the never-ending daylight. There may be no animal sightings the entire time you're in the state or a bear could stumble right into your tent at 3am. What a lot of people forget once they get up here is that this really still is the wild. Moose wander down the main drag in Anchorage and people do still live off the fat of the land.

The "What do you do?" question is still popping up, even here among my fellow staffers. Intern is a curious word that springs to mind images of coffee drips, fax machine faux-pas, piles of paperwork and wearing a shirt that says "gimme a job, any job". What I have come to love about my job here is that I get to be involved in every aspect of this company. I've been able to make it out to our two other lodges, see and take part in the workings, meet all the staff, and really just become aware of what we are selling our guests.

A day at base camp could include going to pick up a rafting trip, making welcome files, getting familiar with the upcoming schedule, hauling logs down a mountain and then stripping them, or a day of king salmon fishing. Paper piles be damned, I totally won this time around!

The other really cool plus that came out of nowhere is the opportunity to get guiding experience. I take guests out on local day hikes and I'll be co-guiding three, larger, 9-day trips this summer up to Denali Park and the area. Pretty stoked about that as my co-guide Randy is fabulous and good times will be mandatory...even if we do burn the little piggies in their blankets.

So, that, in a nutshell is what I'm doing. Has anyone been able to get to the pics? Just want to make sure they're working.

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