Still getting in gear

This morning when I first arrived in the office there was a flurry of activity.  People were buying gifts before checking out.  One couple bought nine Ulu knives, the traditional knives that were used by the tribes who lived in the north.  Interestingly, the first time I had seen such a knife was at a Subway sandwich shop in Whitehorse when they used it for chopping salads.  It has a curved blade with a wooden handle at the top.

Later there was a woman from Oklahoma who came in to look around.  She had an adorable sense of humor and I spent some time with her, convincing her that she needed to buy a jacket for herself and a blouse.  Later she brought her husband in to get a jacket for him.  This afternoon KW told me that my strength seems to be in engaging the customers.  She also said, after observing me trying to register a camper, that she sees me responding to customers right away, which is good; but when I am in the middle of filling out their information or taking their payment, she says I shouldn’t get distracted if they ask about something like wifi.  She says I should say, “I’ll get to that in a minute but let me finish this first.”  I appreciate this kind of feedback.  She compliments me on what I do well and suggests ways I can improve.  That is certainly better than some work experiences I’ve had.  I hope Rose is like that when she comes.

KW is part time, which means that she’s on for seven days and then off for seven days.  There is supposed to be another couple to fill in on the weeks KW and her husband are off, but they haven’t arrived yet.  Tomorrow is the first of KW’s week off and she and her husband plan to travel and see more of Alaska.  She said if there was anything I wanted her to look for in the larger cities, let her know, so I brought her the wrappers of a couple things we can’t find in Tok’s Three Bears Market.  It’s not a bad little market, having everything from groceries to clothing in a store about the size of a Dollar Tree.  Still, they have a limited selection.

We get campers from all over the world.  Yesterday we had a couple folks from Paris, France.  Today we had a couple from Switzerland.

We also got a couple guys today who wanted a cabin with a lot of floor space so they could spread all their stuff out and weigh it.  They’re going to be taking a small plane tomorrow to a place where they’re going to do a documentary on the Forty Mile herd.  Apparently the earliest gold mining town up here was at Forty Mile and it was located in the middle of the traditional caribou migration route.  It disrupted the caribou, and at one point their population diminished to an almost endangered status.  Today it’s beginning to recover so these men are going to film it.  They are only allowed fifty pounds each of equipment, hence their desire to have a large floor for going through their stuff.

Everyone who comes in from the Canadian border complains about the washboard road a few miles before hitting the border.  One man came over from the upper route, along the Top of the World highway.  He said he’d always wanted to do it and now that he’s done it he won’t ever do it again!  We ask people if they want to wash their vehicles and they often say, “What would be the point?  Any road we take from here we’ll get dirty again!”

Just about everything we need on a regular basis is within handy distance from our RV park.  The gas station is practically within walking distance, as is the most highly recommended restaurant in town.  The grocery store is maybe a mile up the road.  Mark has been getting out during the day to go to a lumber yard several miles away where he and Mike get sawdust for spreading around the sites.  They have been doing a lot of heavy physical work and after over four months of not working, that’s hard for Mark to get used to, but he’ll acclimate.  I’m on my feet all day so my knees are kind of sore, but I’ll acclimate too.  It’s just really good to be working again!

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