Thursday, June 21, 2007

Summer Solstice

I am so sad that my camera is on the fritz because it is beautiful in AK. I remember now why I live here. The trees have leafed out in all their birchy glory, the mountains look naked and new without their winter garments, and the hanging baskets have been hung from the downtown lampposts.

We all know what this means – the water lady is back.

During high school and college I worked in downtown Anchorage for the tourism industry. I sold glacier cruises and train rides and hotel rooms to blue-haired cruisers and over-tanned, over-muscled outdoorsy cyclists, and families with matching shirts that said “ALASKA – the Great Land” in green script across their chests. It was great. I really loved it.

And every morning I would see the water lady drive past our plate glass display windows. She scooted around in the water truck – a sort of modified electric golf cart with a huge tank of water and a shower head attached to a long arm on that could reach up to the tall planters. Her brown and white hair was set in curls that sprung above and below her pink neoprene visor. Every morning, she’d visit the petunias, the forget-me-nots, and the marigolds, leaving thankful, dripping baskets and the smell of wet nature in her wake.

But dude, do not stand in front of her cart.

“Get out of my way!” she’d snap in that loud, nasal, mean old lady voice.

This lady had a job to do, and by gum, no tourist or child or puppy was going to get in her way. She frowned at passers-by. She yammered traffic into submission. Even the homeless gave her a wide berth.

Look out for the water lady.

No comments: