celebrating feast days today include Saint Brice (invoked against
diseases of the stomach), Saint Didacus, Saint Homobonus (patron saint
of clothworkers), Saint Siardus, Saint Felician, Saint Victor, and
Saint Frances Xavier Cabrini (patron saint of immigrants).
birthdays today are Richard Mulligan (67), Fred Harris (69), and Whoopi
Goldberg (50), among millions of others.
I arrived in Alaska, I wrote one letter to my sister and another to
my parents. This is the first part of the letter I wrote my sister.
When I finally arrived at the ferry terminal, car packed to the seams
and both the dogs and myself in a frenzy, it was too late to board.
The boat wasn't leaving for another hour, but the rule (that I had
somehow overlooked) was that cars must be in line three hours early.
I begged. I cried my eyes out. I had planned so carefully and now
it was all falling apart.
My friends who were there to see me off tried to console me, but I
Then just before the ferry was to pull out, an attendant came running
over with a tape measure. There was a little room left and my car,
being very small, just might fit. He relayed the measurements to the
boat. Not small enough.
Of course, I wasn't the only one who had messed up. One man was running
from car to car asking if anyone wanted to drive to Anchorage with
him. Wrangell was as far from Anchorage as it was from Seattle, and
in the opposite direction, but what the heck...it was October 28th
and that was the day I was leaving for Alaska.
I told him that if he couldn't find anyone else, I would go as far
as Haines, where I could catch a different ferry heading south back
toward my destination. Of course, he didn't find anyone else so I
invited him to go back with my friends and me to Pat's house so we
could look him over in better light. He seemed okay so I threw the
critical supplies into his car from mine (and the dogs, of course),
arranged for someone to put my car on the ferry that was leaving the
next week, and took off in the middle of the night for a 2000 mile
ride with a total stranger.