Work has taken me to a number of cities that I probably wouldn’t have visited otherwise. Frankfort, Kentucky. Springfield, Illinois. Little Rock, Arkansas. The list goes on. These are all nice enough places, but they are not exactly vacation destinations. This week, however, goes a long way toward making up for my stays in the flyover states. Work has provided me with an expenses-paid trip to Alaska.
I arrived in Juneau on Monday afternoon. It was a long trip – I left Charlottesville at 6:45 a.m., and arrived in Juneau some 12 hours later. It was, however, nothing compared to the 70+ hours that Mapquest said it would take to drive it!
I’ve never been to a town like Juneau. While it is the state capital, it really is a town, with a population of only 30,000. It’s a town, however, that happens to have a constantly rotating collection of massive cruise ships docked in its harbor during the summer months.
Tourism is the heart and soul of Juneau. The ships dock and thousands – thousands – of passengers disembark to comb through the downtown district and spend their money on everything from jewelry and furs to “My parents went to Alaska and all I got was this lousy t-shirt” t-shirts.
While some of the tourists may come for the souveniers, I’d wager that most come out of an appreciation for the beauty of God’s creation. There is certainly a lot of it to appreciate. Juneau is fronted by water on one side,
and backed by mountains to the rear.
I was destined to get up close and personal with those mountains, but that will have to wait for another post….