This morning, we conquered new frontiers, so to speak. We rose bright and early to make the move from our original lodge to Jubilee Cabin. Although we were less than “jubilant” during the uphill hike to our new abode, the peace and quiet of the secluded space was amazing. After settling in and getting accustomed to our rooms, we played board games and enjoyed each other’s company. We then enjoyed a light lunch and set out on our exciting afternoon activity. As usual, we spent the bus ride chatting and singing playful tunes. We were in for a pleasant surprise, seeing that today’s activity would be less strenuous than the long yet enriching hikes on which we’d embarked previously.
The bus released us into a field surrounded by luscious forest, vaguely reminiscent of “The Sound of Music”. While waiting for our guides, some of us took part in an impromptu planking competition. Once the professional tour guides and kayaking instructors arrived, pilgrims were divided into two groups; one would kayak while the other went on an educational hike. Afterword, the groups would switch places. Preparing for kayaking was an endeavor as we had to put on the correct gear, including the very stylish “splash skirts,” and carry the kayaks to the shore, but luckily our guides were well-prepared and experienced. We were truly blessed with clement weather: the skies were clear, and the sun was shining. Even the notoriously chilly Alaskan waters were refreshingly cool with relatively calm waves to cradle our kayaks.
The two groups switched on the beach, with the kayaking group handing off their gear and the hiking group eager to hit the waves. The hiking guide pointed out edible plants and interesting symbiotic relationships and told us stories typical of a born-and-raised Alaskan. Accompanied by an unfortunate volume of bugs, we made our way back to our starting point. When we met up with the rest of the group, we attentively listened as our tour guides taught us the varieties of salmon native to Alaska, then headed back to the bus.
Tonight, Kevin’s team was up to prepare dinner. We went the Italian route, with bruschetta for an appetizer and risotto for the main course. During our first supper in the new cabin, we enjoyed lovely conversation. Finally, everyone shared fresh-baked cookies with vanilla ice cream as a dessert. After dinner, we visited the columbarium for a reflective prayer session as the sun began to set on the summer solstice. Cooling down, we prepared for bed, as we had all planned to rise very early to view the very special sunrise. All day, we felt a supportive embrace through community and new experiences.
Eden Rowe and Catherine Opsahl
The thoughts and observations of our Journey to Adulthood pilgrims on their journey to Alaska.
Keep our kids
in your prayers: