I’ve been receiving lots of questions about my Alaska vacation, and the most asked question is, “What was your favorite thing?” There were so many amazing, wonderful things, but I have to say that my very favorite was a totem pole featuring a whale that was in the museum in Anchorage. It was the most beautiful, graceful thing, and I loved it!
This glorious work of art is around 200 years old, and I fell in love with it!
Our ride on the McKinley Explorer train was spectacular. What a lovely way to travel! The upper level contained comfortable living and observation areas, and the lower level of the train contained a dining room and other amenities. The tour of Denali National Park was a thrill. Mount McKinley was majestic; there is just no other way to describe it. At 20,320 feet above sea level, it is the highest mountain peak in the United States and North America. The animals in the park are incredible. I couldn’t believe the size of the grizzly bears!
Traveling by train through Denali was wonderful!
It was a beautiful, clear day when we saw Mount McKinley. I was told that we were lucky, because the mountain is usually shrouded in fog and clouds.
I told you the bears were huge! These two were in Anchorage—the ones in Denali were alive and roaming free.
The first part of my vacation was the train ride through Denali, followed by the cruise along the Alaskan Coast. I realized I didn’t bring enough warm clothes for the trip and had to buy a coat and a warm shirt in Denali—it was around 100 degrees when I left Virginia!
Talk about a great tour guide and bus driver (pictured above with my grandson Sean)! This guy kept us all happy for about nine hours from Denali to Anchorage to board our ship. He kept us all tickled with his teasing of my grandson Sean, who came on the trip as a graduation gift. (Sean moved into Virginia Tech on Wednesday!) It really makes for a great trip when it is as full of good humor and camaraderie as that bus ride was.
One of our stops along the cruise route was Ketchikan, which was delightful. We saw seals catching salmon. I’m wearing the coat and shirt I bought in Denali.
Two skags in Skagway—my friend May Johnson and me. Ginny Myers gave me the hat; she won it aboard ship.
We auctioned a beautiful quilt for the P. Buckley Moss Foundation for Children’s Education while aboard the ship. The quilt was made by Cindy Knotts of Xenia, OH, incorporating one of my hand-painted centerpieces, and Ginny Myers (pictured above) was the high bidder. As usual, when I found out a good friend was bidding against me, I stopped. I missed out on another one, but I know it has a great home.
What a happy bunch we were! It was such fun to see amazing Alaska with so many friends!
Some of us went to Butchart Gardens in Victoria, Canada, after the cruise. The gardens are breathtaking!
Sunset on the ferry going back to Vancouver from Butchart Gardens—the last day.
I’m excited to announce that I’ll be at The Cultural Arts Center at Glen Allen (Virginia) on Saturday, September 15, for a luncheon from 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., followed by a signing from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. There is no admission fee for the signing event, but tickets for the luncheon are $50 per person. To order luncheon tickets and obtain additional information, please call 804-261-ARTS (2787).
Our thoughts and prayers are with Barry Watson and his family as they mourn the passing of his mother. She was a dear gentlewoman. Barry and his wife Pam own The Framery in Marietta, Georgia.