Wednesday, August 29, 2007
Reindeer dogs on the Tsunami Evacuation Route. Yes, Dad & I are really back home, and after a glitch where my bag was taken home by another passenger, all is back home with me. Shortly after being shuttled to shore via small boats from the ship, I snapped this photo of Sitka's harbor. Thinking back on it, Sitka was my favorite port on the Alaskan voyage.
We passed this rather ominous sign nearly immediately after leaving the harbor area. At least we can say the town disaster preparedness team has thought this possibility through!
On the next corner, we spied the Reindeer Redhots umbrella where authentic reindeer hot dogs were being sold.
The owner/proprietor explained that the reindeer were raised up north and a meat processor turned the meat into hot dogs for him near Anchorage and shipped it to him. While talking with me he was coaching his young teenager on customer service, the first necessity being taking the earphones from the iPod out of your ears!
Dad and I shared a Reindeer Redhot, topped with sauerkraut and a little yellow mustard. Better than most franks I've tasted, flavorful and moist without being overly greasy, this was quite good! And I'm not a hot dog fan. I also chose the whole wheat bun. Fresh, 'local' ingredients at their best!
Sitka was the first town we visited in Alaska. We had an unusually sunny day and I saw a humpback whale 'breach' and leap in a big arch right in front of our small tour boat! We were told that this was a relatively rare happening as the leaping usually takes place at their breeding grounds in Hawaii. We also saw a gray whale diving and a bunch of adorable sea otters floating around on their backs looking cute. Most of the photos snapped this trip were taken from behind windows in moving transportation, so many didn't turn out so well. The St. Michael's Cathedral is also fascinating to visit, full of icons and information on Alaskan saints, and alas, no photography was allowed. I think this was Dad's favorite place as a lovely older lady (but still his junior) invited Dad to rest by her. He then had no further interest in icons! Imagine that...