I made a little film. This one is for the wanderlust. Those who want to explore the world even if they’re still tucked into their bed sheets. I made this film to encapsulate my experiences in Alaska and hopefully bring the magnitude of beauty I saw there, straight to you.
I along with 35 wonderful people left our humid North Caroline surroundings for the sweet 60 degree atmosphere of Alaska. We spent our time running a summer VBS day camp for some children in the city of Soldotna. It was four days of peanut butter and jelly bliss as we spent several hours each day trying to keep up with children hyped up on lemonade and Jesus. I do not consider myself to be a “kid person”, but I somehow managed to attract a whole squad of children who followed me around. One in particular, I will never forget. His name is Andrew, and his sweet face and loving (yet slightly clingy) personality made my heart melt. On the third day, he told me he loved me. That proclamation was quickly followed by red cheeks and a huge 1st grader grin that lacked a front tooth.
After a successful camp, we had some time to explore. Our group spent an entire day on the ocean spotting whales, and staring at glaciers. I was constantly walking around the ship, switching lenses and taking photographs of the wildlife, the ocean, the mountains, and the sleeping group of teenagers I know and love.
Deep Sea fishing has always been on my bucket list, and when I heard it was an option, I quickly signed up. I didn’t know it would require waking up at 4 am and that I would be the only girl going, but hey, it was an adventure and something I couldn’t pass up. The early morning greeted me with sunshine, as the 20 hours of light can make even the ugliest hours of the day seem pleasant. I grabbed a coffee and as soon as we hit the vans, my face had hit the pillow and I slept through the 1 hour drive to the ocean. Once on the fishing boat, me and a lot of friends stood on the bow of the ship and watched otters float and mountains pass. We would yell whenever we skipped over a huge wave and as the waters became rough, everyone began to slip back into the boat. I was the last one on the deck. I stood at the front and watched the horizon until the water became too sporty for me so I began to walk towards the back of the boat to get inside. As I walked along the side of the boat, a ginormous wave swept in and without any warning, completely drenched me. I swung open the door and was met with 15 laughing faces as my wet hair and soaked jacket dripped salt water onto the floor. I wasn’t upset, it just gave me a story to tell, and after a successful day of fishing, I left that boat looking shipwrecked but happy.
Traveling home was rough. Im not going to sugarcoat it, I looked like a homeless person by the time we made it back to Charlotte after 26 hours of driving and flights and Wendy’s runs. That beautiful place looks like it was taken out of a movie, and I will never forget those picturesque mountains and water so blue, it put the sky to shame. I am so grateful to have been able to have this experience and I hope to go back and maybe see a bear, because I didn’t see a single bear… Not one. I am convinced they don’t exist.