Where do I start? I had every intention of blogging each day, but honestly we have been busier than even I could have envisioned!!! Since Wednesday we have been going nonstop. Most of the mushers we’ve caught coming across the finish line arrived on Wednesday, but we’ve caught some since then. We saw the Berington sisters came up on Front Street by the Subway and then hopped in our vehicle and tried to get down the street ahead of them. Unfortunately someone in front of us decided they wanted to drive beside them the whole way, so we couldn’t, but it’s all good. We’d been waiting for one of the rookies to come in who is a relative of someone who goes to my friend’s church. As there was no siren to alert us (if there was we didn’t hear it) we had to go by our best guess and the advice of the people down at the mini-convention center. Would you believe we missed him by ten minutes? We were told that when he crossed the line he got off his sled, got down on one knee, and proposed to his fiance! Would have loved to have been there for that!
We missed the Brazilian’s finish today, again because we were told he’d be in in approximately 45 minutes. Turns out it was more like 30. We did get to see him less than an hour later at a local restaurant called Pingo’s and I got a picture of Kevin shaking his hand. Yesterday we were at Bearing Song next door (which is a great little gift shop) and walked through it to Bering Tea shop (which is attached) and a couple of mushers were in there with their wives and kids.
Martin Buser spoke at the library yesterday but we missed it. Rich and Mary made it, though, and said it was fantastic. They’ve been talking about a special on the Discovery Channel about the Iditarod and how good it was. Evidently Martin was featured. Seems like a great guy who really loves his dogs. They all do. We heard that one of the dogs died in Unalakleet yesterday. It was probably one that just got dropped and was weak or something. We’ve had some serious blizzards and wind the last few days.
Yesterday Kevin and Rich participated in the Businessman’s Dogsled Race held by the Nome Kennel Club. It was around 15 degrees, but the wind chill made it seem much colder. There were 28 mushers and guess what? Kevin won 2nd place! He done good :) The dogs he used were actually used earlier in the race by someone else who ended up coming in third place! Kevin said it was a lot of work. He said he used his leg to help push the sled along and whenever he would stop and take a break one or more of the dogs would look back at him as if to say, “Slacker!”
This morning we went to the Girl Scouts’ Pancake Breakfast then headed to a ladies’ meeting. I got to share and so did my friend, and we had a great time. After that we went to the mini and waited for the autograph session. It’s a great opportunity to meet them and although some looked pretty beat, most were smiling and friendly. We’re going to go to the Musher’s Banquet tomorrow (technically it’s now today!) and maybe can catch those we missed at that time.
This afternoon Rhonda brought out her jars and jars of sea glass she’s collected, and Mary and I spent time making wind chimes. It’ll be a nice memento of our time here, which is quickly drawing to a close. I’ll be glad to see the kids again (Skype is great, but there’s no substitute for hugs and kisses!). Not sure what we’ll be doing after church tomorrow, perhaps checking the crab pots we didn’t get to check before. And then it’ll be Monday and time to head home. It’ll take us about 24 hours to get from Nome to Harrisburg. Wish it didn’t take so long. Then again, if it was right around the corner, Alaska wouldn’t be the wilderness that it is!
I think about the only thing we didn’t get to see were the northern lights. Think I’ll peek outside before I go to bed…just in case :)