Alaska 2023

Day 11

July 18

  I realize that I have no way of printing out my reservation, so I do two things. First, I take a picture of it with my camera. Then I write down the details on a piece of paper to take with me. At least one of them should work to get me on board if there are any questions about it.  
  This is a passenger only ferry down by Homer Spit that does not leave until 11 AM. So I have plenty of time to enjoy a lovely, leisurely breakfast. After my server last night recommended the Duncan House Diner, I find the address online and then me and BlueBelle head for it. It's a little off the beaten track but not by much and I find it easy enough.  
  I have to love their clock hanging behind the counter.  
  They don't have omelets but they do have wonderful hot chocolate ...  
  and scrumptious gravy and biscuits to go along with scrambled eggs and bacon.  

And as the old song says,

'There's nothing left but ashes after the fire(food) is gone.'

  Since I have a some extra time after breakfast before I have to be at the ferry terminal, I decide I'll chase a few roads leading out of Homer.  
  I don't see to much of any real interest to me so ...  
  I head for the ferry terminal out near the Spit.  
  Once again I really enjoy the scenery on the way down as it is just so pretty.  
  Off to my left I see an old boat that has been converted into a somewhat permanent residence. I have to give the folks credit for using what they had handy and making it work for them..  
  I have somehow misplaced my hat so I stop by a local store and pick up a mighty fine one for a mighty fine price. I don't like to go outside without one as I've already had a biopsy and some nasty stuff frozen off the top of my noggin. So to me it is still cheap at any price to keep from going through that medical experience again.  
  The ferry terminal is a little tricky to find so I am glad that I have a little extra time. It's on a back street off the main drag that is easy to miss the first time you go by it. But I finally see it and when I pull in I meet up with Rick and Connie who are in the area for a different cruise. We catch up with how our trips are going and then they have to go catch their ship.  
  The ferry to Seldovia is named Kachemak Voyager and is a really nice ship though not as large as the Alaskan Highway ones. It is more of the catamaran style and smaller because it does not haul vehicles.  
  As we leave the harbor there are more beautiful views to behold. I have to say this is one of the prettier places that I have been in Alaska.  
  The ferry is pretty quick and smooth so you have to watch your hat if you are standing out on the front - but that is where you can get the best views.  
  You never really get out of sight of land, but it does recede way into the distance - a little too far for a feller to swim in my opinion. On the ferry is a dear sweet young man named Scotty who has Downs Syndrome. He claps when he likes things and he claps a lot. His happiness is contagious and this old world would be a better place if it were more like Scotty. He is happy about the little things of life instead of making a fuss about the big things that you can't do anything about anyway.  
  We see a few houses perched on the hillside as we approach the harbor.  
  It's a crowded harbor and you can tell most of the boats in it are for business and not for pleasure. I would imagine on Seldovia the options for work are either tourism or fishing or running a small local business.  
  Seldovia has less than 300 total in population and less than 1/2 square mile of land area. There used to be a board walk and houses on pilings until the the Good Friday Earthquake in 1964 dropped the land surface six feet lower. The high tides soon flooded and destroyed everything along the coast.  
  Dirt from Cap's Hill (which was totally destroyed in the process) was used to fill back in and raise the coast up. The old boardwalk and the various homes and business that were flooded just became part of the 'fill' as the town reconstructed itself.  
  There's a visitor center near the dock, so I take a stroll over to see what I can see.  
  They have some pretty and interesting stuff like this stained glass window ...  
  lovely hanging flowering plants ...  
  and some of the history of the town.  
  There are various displays of stuffed local wildlife ...  
  and some native Alaskan artifacts.  
  At one time Seldovia was the home to fox farming, berry picking and commercial fishing, including King Crab fishing. There was some logging and mining that went on in their past history.  
  As I leave the visitor center and wander around the island, I see this sign. Having been in Central Park in New York City, I have to say I like this one much better.  
  It has several very interesting wood carvings on display and I wonder if they were done with a chainsaw as they often do back home.  
  They even have an eagle guarded bench for a feller to take a rest on if need be.  
  One of the most interesting sites on the island is the St. Nicholas Russian Orthodox Church originally started as a log building in 1820. The current structure is thought to have replaced the log one in about 1891.  
  It has stood the test and trials of time and seems as if they keep it in pretty good condition.  
  It's a pretty good walk to the top of the hill where it is located but you are rewarded with a very nice view for your efforts.  

There are several walking trails of some length on the island, but I decide to stay close as I have no watch with me. I sure don't want to miss the ferry back as it only runs once a day to and from the island. As I start to cross the street there is a truck coming but he comes to a stop and tells me out his window with a big smile -

"Go ahead, ain't nobody in a hurry in Seldovia."

So I do.

  There's a local gift shop on the main drag so I stop by to see if I can find something for my wife.  
  When I go in I see Miss Annie the CIC - Cat In Charge, who is kind enough to let her human run things for her as she really does not like dealing with those nasty humans.  
  I pick a few things which are very reasonably priced and have the kind lady wrap them very well since they will have a long ride before they will see the Holler.  

It's time to feed the beast so I pick a local place and go on in.


They've got a nice deck out back with a great view - complete with fine company out of an Edgar Allen Poe story. But I tell him -

"Begging food from a fat man is a losing proposition"

so he decides to find a better opportunity and takes off.

  I can also see the ferry from my perch which is good thing to me.  
  I order some soup ...  
  a sandwich and some fries and it is all pretty tasty. There is young couple there and I strike up a conversation. He is an eye doctor in Homer and his wife is from Switzerland. When I mention Andermatt she knows exactly where it is as she has been through there. He's also a rider, having owned several different marquees. He has a BMW GS but he really favors the Ducatis and the Guzzis. Because I may be facing it one day, I quiz him about his take on cataract surgery and the various lens options. He's quite knowledgeable and I thank him for his insights.  

But I figure I'd best get headed toward to ferry so I go in to settle up. Hailey, my wonderful server and I talk about my adventures on a motorcycle and I give her my website address. When I take her picture I tell her my 'usual' line -

"You'll be world famous now!"

and we both have a big laugh at that one.

  When I get back toward the dock I find a comfortable perch in the shade near the harbor master's office.  
  When I see other people headed down the dock ramp I figure it must be about boarding time so I follow them.  
  It's a short wait and then they let us board so the ship can get underway.  
  When I see this little house perched on the rock outcropping, I have to wonder how in the world to you get up there to it.  
  Again I enjoy the rugged isolation and wonder if man has ever climbed any of those mountains across the water.  
  The ferry gets back to the Homer terminal and I mount up on BlueBelle and head toward town.  
  I figure tomorrow I'll just lay around and rest but I'll need supper for tonight and tomorrow night and breakfast for in the morning.. I remember a Safeway on my way into town so I make a provisioning stop since I have a frig and microwave in my room.  
  And while I'm at it, I know it's about time I wash some clothes so I can have a fresh start. I only pack for five days even on long trips as many motels have washers and dryers. It beats trying to pack enough clothes for an entire trip like this one which will be 25 days on the road.  
  I'm pretty simple in my culinary pursuits so a good old ham and cheese sandwich with some tater chips is just fine.  
  I catch up on some stuff that I want to electronically and soon I am on the ferry that takes me to the Island of Dreams.