- Mike

Alaska Is...

       the journey, not the destination.

Final Reflections

        Dear Mr. and Mrs. Grigowski, Hazel, Kellogg, Post, Ranville, and Sievertsen:
        It has been my pleasure to be your child’s van drive during their three weeks Alaska Great Lakes Project Adventure.
        As time passes they will reflect on our adventures. They will remember the” wet foot” climbs of Exit Glacier and body sledding in the snow. They will recall the cold winds of the Mt. Healy climb. The kids will also recall the experience of using microscopes on the boat trip in Resurrection bay and the lab in Homer. Culture played a role in their trip as we toured the museums of the University of Alaska in Fairbanks, the Pratt Museum in Homer and the Native Culture Center in Anchorage.
        Post card in the future will trigger memories of the glaciers, Denali, Hatcher Pass, the volcanoes of Cook Inlet, and the Mountains of Homer and Palmer. Although your kids have been shopping they will still remember exploring for bargains on the Homer Spit, Girdwood, Seward, the Fairbanks festival and the museum shops. In addition to the mountain climbs they had other athletic experiences as participants in the mid night sun run, swimming at North Pole, hiking to the Three Lost Lakes and as spectators of the midnight baseball game.
        Of course Matt, Sarah, Roni, Megan, Marcus, and Kari saw the wild life of AK up close and personal. They went a fish weir to view salmon, saw whales dive and breach, birds of all kinds as well as most of the major wild life AK has to offer. All of the above are “tangible” memories of Alaska they could retain.
        I believe your children’s AGLP trip has a number of “intangible” experience which may be a reinforcement of lessons you, as parents, instilled in them. It is my hope that they will be able to expand these traits into their everyday life. They enjoyed the benefit of planning ahead. They looked beyond the next meal or the next event. The kids saw the advantage of being prepared for the event of the day. Working together successfully, whether it was as a van preparing a meal, singing at the talent shows, cleaning out the van or working within their assigned committee, was another good experience for them , I believe they know how to listen to the “voices” of experience (which may come as a great surprise to you.)”
        Your children got along well with each other. If they were annoyed with someone they tolerated it well because it was never evident. They also seemed to have a wide circle of friends within the AGLP group. They brought with them a cross section of music which they played and sang to constantly. If there was diversity, then music was the great unifier. I believe it brought them together and helped them to work together as a team.
        This is my eighth trip in nine years and the sixth as a driver of kids. The dynamics and interaction of your children has made this the most rewarding of my eight trips.
        I am thankful that I had Sarah, our impish instigator; Matt, or talented solo vocalist; Marcus, our “main man” the reader; Kari, our newest hugger: Roni, our foundation; and Megan, our timekeeper.
        I will miss them and I will look forward to following their activities in the coming years.