Kelly's 2011 Alaska Journey

Day 14 - Friday, 6/3

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It occurs that doing some mundane "regular life" tasks in the middle of a vacation isn't a bad thing- It can provide a grounding effect, a brief moment of normality which actually feels reassuring. Such was today. It may sound tedious to do laundry, speak with an insurance adjuster, and change the oil in a motorcycle, but it actually was somewhat comforting. But let's start at the beginning, shall we?

View from
my room
Hard to believe, but even though waking at 3:30 am again, I felt more rested than I have in some time. Even better was getting back to sleep for a couple more hours. It was most welcome, and the last chance for some time to "sleep in."

The first activity of the day was to call the people whose bike had hit mine. Recall that we'd agreed to "handle things ourselves," as the other guy wanted to keep the police, the state, and the insurance companies out of it. It was a decision that had made me increasingly edgy- I kept waiting for the other shoe to drop; that they'd do something behind my back. After trying to reach him for four days, in effort to hear ANYTHING from them, they finally said "We've contacted our insurance company, and yours is trying to reach you." And they couldn't tell me this days ago? Of course not- That'd have put me on equal footing, and no doubt they wanted me to look as though I was the person evading official channels.

Naturally, the next thing to do was to call my insurance. I was transferred to a local adjuster here in Anchorage, and I gave a statement over the phone. I was encouraged to come by as soon as possible. My adjuster wanted to see the KLR and its damage.

It's funny- At the scene of the accident, I rode to a place with cell service to call their family, I got sandwiches for them, rode back to help them load their bike and trailer into their truck and bigger trailer, and even gave them two of my tie-down straps and secured their motorcycle trailer into their truck bed. There are times when the old adage "No good deed goes unpunished" applies. I've seen a lot of animals on my trip so far, but this is the first time encountering snakes.

Upon my showing the helmet-cam photos of the accident, the adjuster said "Wow. Clearly we won't be accepting ANY responsibility for the accident." He went on to tell me to go on with my vacation, have a great time, and not to worry about a thing. Sounds like advice worth following- it's in the hands of my insurance people now; Nothing more for me to do.

A nice lunch at an authentic-looking diner, doing a load of laundry while emailing the photos to my insurance adjuster, and then a quick hour at the Alaska Museum was a nice way to spend the afternoon. The museum is first-rate: The Smithsonian runs it. I'd have loved to stay there longer, but time just wasn't available. In a scene that must've looked like Chevy Chase in "Vacation," I ran throughout the museum snapping photos of everything. I'll look at them in more detail when I have time. Not quite the same, but it'll have to do. Maybe when we return to Anchorage another opportunity will present itself.

After the museum, it was back to the MotoQuest / Alaska Rider shop. This time I didn't have to bother Mark; I was able to stay out of his way, and change my own oil and filter. A quick run back to the hotel to knock out most of this blog, then out to dinner with all but one of the team. Brenden and Dan, our hosts, took us to a very nice restaurant for our "welcome" dinner, and the recommendation of salmon chowder and grilled local King Salmon was spot-on. The fish was absolutely astounding. They assure me we won't be eating like that all the time, which suits me just fine. The skin-tight Levi's I purchased just before the trip now actually have some room in them- So my sensible eating habits seem to be paying off!

Our hosts told us that Internet and cellular service will be spotty at best after we leave Fairbanks (which is tomorrow's destination), so don't be surprised if this blog isn't updated as regularly as I've been able to do so far. I'll try to keep up with writing the thing and getting photos ready for upload, so when we get to a place with 'net, I'll upload it all at once to catch up.

Total riding distance today: About 20-ish   Running total: Oh, 20 more than yesterday   :-)

Stay tuned...


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