If you’re reading this online from your Maui vacation cottage, Betsteroids, congratulate yourself on escaping for spring break at the right time. Right after you caught the last plane out on March 9, a horrible blizzard blew in, burying downtown Homer in 6 feet of wet, sloppy snow. Eighty mph winds churned that into drifts 20 feet high, blocking the Sterling Highway at Main Street until the National Guard could bring in bulldozers to dig us out. As we write this, Pavehawk helicopters have been landing in the Safeway parking lot to bring in emergency supplies of milk, diapers and bread.
Holy Internet Research Agency! As they say in the Bush, I jokes. For those who didn’t leave town with all the other gazillion Alaskans now crowding Hawaii’s beaches, let’s let our friends think they made the right call. We won’t tell them about the amazing spring days we’ve been having. We won’t mention the totes wonderful skiing in 40-degree sunshine. We won’t talk about basking on the back deck, sitting in a chaise lounge and letting all those photons rain down upon our winter hardened flesh. What happens in Homer stays in Homer.
Sure, it would be awesome to get away to a part of the world with green grass, flowers, surf and cold margaritas. Not all of us can afford that. Some of us can’t get the time off work. Some of us don’t want to fuss with the crowded airports, the frenzy of trying to book a flight or vacation rental along with half the state. Spring break, schmeak.
Stuck home? We get to enjoy light traffic, taking a morning commute through a school zone at 35 mph and no lines at the grocery store. We can celebrate … well, the glory of Alaska as she moves steadily toward summer.
So put on those shades, roll up your sleeves and maybe wash your truck, because there still is lots to do, like these Best Bets:
BEST UP IN THE AIR BET: It’s not a bird. It’s not a plane. It’s not a helicopter, but it sort of looks like one. With a prop and big rotating blades, the gyrocopter flies through the air without wings. How does that work? Learn about gyrcopters with our own gyro guy, Ian Reid, as he gives a talk, “Introduction to Gyrocopters,” at 6:30 p.m. today at the Homer Public Library.
BEST CLOSER WALK WITH THEE BET: All our Homer physicians are marvelous, but only one of them plays the viola. That would be Dr. Giulia Tortora, this month’s doc in the Walk With a Doc series at the South Peninsula Athletics and Recreation Complex starting at 9 a.m. Saturday. Dr. Tortora will give a short talk about staying healthy and then walk with health-conscious citizens. Free blood pressure screenings, prizes and refreshments will be offered.
BEST TELL IT TRUE BET: Once you’ve taken a stroll, expand your mind, too, with the monthly Storytelling Circle. Listen to others spin some yarns or be brave enough to tell your own tales. The circle is 3-5 p.m. Saturday at the Homer Public Library.
BEST GET READY BET: The Homer Chamber of Commerce and Visitor Center’s Winter King Salmon Tournament doesn’t happen until next Saturday, March 24, but that just means you’ll want to get your gear into shape for the big bash. Registration is going on now at www.homerwinterking.com.