Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Day 3-MCG to TAK

Full from cheeseburgers, world famous Takotna pie and the high of sitting in a room full of world famous mushers, Nan and I are happy girls! Jerry, one of the Iditarod Air Force pilots, took us over to Takotna for dinner, which is a ten minute plane ride. Yum!

What a day! I can't believe how quickly things have flown by. We watched the first musher, Martin Buser, ride into McGrath yesterday evening. This happened while there was still daylight, which is unheard of. He stayed long enough to drop off a tired dog and take a picture with his trophy.

We hit the ground running this morning at 7:40. Today was a little better, because unlike yesterday morning, we weren't surprised by a flight of incoming vets, trail crew, etc. Imagine not even having your contacts in yet or having brushed teeth and people coming up to you asking where they're supposed to go. I have learned that if I just take a deep breath and remember that we're the luckiest people in the world right now, everything goes smoothly. So far so good!

We have a great little working crew here in our hub out of the cafe. Nicole, Nan, Laura, Bert (being replaced by Wes) tomorrow and Jodie (who left today with Bert for a different post) and Al who does anything and everything that needs to be done here or elsewhere in McGrath. Nicole is from Newcastle and is a ton of fun and she knows her stuff. At first, her accent was a little difficult to understand but it has all evened out because she can't understand why the Llewellyn sisters (or maybe all Yanks in general) are so bad at pool--I'd say we're even.

We had a lot of incoming/outbound volunteers today, so things went by quickly. We have quite a few dropped dogs here right now in McGrath so we went and visited them tonight. They'll head back to Anchorage tomorrow. They're nestled down in their straw tonight keeping warm.
We haven't had much time to head down to the checkpoint to see the mushers come through so rely on the reports from others who can go to see what they look like/how they and their dogs are doing.

Al, a load volunteer, and I went to the dump today! It was nice to get a bigger tour of McGrath. We even saw a moose! I felt much better seeing one, because I had a fake sighting earlier and had asked Al to turn around in a truck that has little brakes and is on its last leg. This time it was for real and was lying down in the snow munching on some grub.

The Chinese auction was fun last night! We were so tired that it was hard to keep our eyes open, but we stayed for a few rounds. A couple times we came close to our change being the last quarter/dollar being dropped but alas we did not win a thing. Some of the prizes we saw were a dinner for two at the McGrath B&B, round-trip tickets from PenAir, a fox fur hat and coat and a jewelry box with a key chain in it (pilot Ed won that).

We are gearing up for day 4 on the trail and are excited for all of the excitement tomorrow will bring. I can't believe how many amazing people we have met!!!! How exciting! Thank you all for following our blog. We will post more as soon as we have a break in the action. For some reason, I can't load pictures so if you're on Facebook we'll try and post more soon!

~Nan and Laura

Tiger update:
He has finally emerged from under the bed and even slept in Laura's sleeping bag last night. Our room is a balmy 50 degrees, so we think he's more desperate for warmth than anything.

Quote of day:
To Nan from a volunteer in TAK:, "Where are you from, MN? You have a funny accent."


brad said...

I love this! I feel like I'm living vicariously through your adventures!! Keep the great posts coming! I look forward to reading this everyday!!!

-Trecia Campbell

Nan and Laura said...

Thanks, Trecia!!!! I'm so glad you're following it :-)

Lauren said...

thanks to your mom, i was able to find your blog!! great fun reading it all. did you know that i came face to face with a moose on my mailroute? it was in november, and he had come into spokane to see the city, i guess! i kept a car between us, but i could have reached out and touched him when he trotted past! very exciting! love, lauren