Thursday, July 26, 2007

Juneau to Whittier to Anchorage


The railroad stole my handlebar bag. You can't ride your bike through the tunnel to get out of Whittier. So I chatted with the other hitchhikers and waited until early afternoon to get out of town. The Alaska Railroad caters to tourists and rafters and, on the occasional basis, people like me.

I sleepily boarded the train; I'd been up since five. After a jolt through a couple tunnels, they were unloading my bike and trailer in Portage.

There I sat with Jenny at mile 80, drinking free coffee and teaching her that jokes still came on the new laffy taffy wrappers. I also helped her take apart a rack.

The conductor hanging off the train held out my bag that I'd described as a black lunch box. He asked if my whole life really was in that bag.

Then, at 5:15, I rode the 45 miles to Kristine's parent's off of 88th in Anchorage. I only stopped in Girdwood to be served a gyro by a woman named Olga. I slept on the couch.