About a week ago I was talking with Larry, a friend of fish camp who lives in Nebraska but keeps close tabs on my well being through the year; you know, makes sure I'm still alive and all.
He was commenting on some of my recent adventures when he said, "Dante, you're f-ed."
What he meant, in context, was essentially, jaded.
It wasn't a revelation.
I came up here to do things I couldn't do where I came from.
Now I do a lot of those things everyday, or every weekend at least, and have grown quite accustomed to those luxuries.
"You're screwed dude. You're not going to be able to live in what, Philadelphia, or Omaha," he said.
He's probably right, to an extent anyway.
I realized this last fall though, and it wasn't Philadelphia, or Omaha, that I was worried about.
I knew this would happen, but I've grown real comfortable with the Kenai Peninsula, particularly the cen-pen area.
True, this particular area is maybe not as spectacularly beautiful as say Homer, or Seward, but we're much closer to the "rest" of the state, at least compared to the former, and have a bigger population than the latter; and that offers a certain number of advantages.
My opinion of Anchorage has flipped about 180 degrees from where it was a year and a half ago.
I said that last week though. ANC is still reasonably close to a lot of the places I've come to love and I could still end up there one day, make no mistake.
But what about Outside, what about in the Lower 48, what about back East?
Could I ever go back?
Short answer, yes.
The medium answer, however, is yes, but with some likely drastic changes.
I stand by that I could be happy pretty much anywhere, even Omaha, the question is, how happy?
Omaha would obviously be a bad fit for a person like me, but there are still plenty of places in the west and even the east I could live. They would just require a paradigm shift and a change in the way I live I think.
In some parts of the west that shift might be pretty minor.
I think if I wound up back east, however, after just two years up here, that shift would be significantly bigger.
Skiing and boarding is a good example though. I've got it so good here, that I just don't know how I could settle for the east's temperamental winters. I think I'd probably can it all together.
On the other hand, cycling might become a bigger part of my life since the roads aren't bound in ice for half the year and there's more trails and roads to ride.
My perceptions have changed too though. I'm not sure if this is the time or place to elaborate, but I know that the way I see the world and interpret events has changed, and that's something that would continue to influence me if I ended up someplace else, even if it was a place I'd been before.
I've been spoiled in a way by this place, but, I'm not complaining or planning on changing that.