29.12.06

1994

That was the year my brother came up with his hackneyed idea to go to Alaska for the summer to make some cash gutting fish.

"You're not going alone," I told him.

A week later I quit my sh*tty cubicle banking job, packed up his Hyundai Excel hatchback with everything we thought we needed & drove across the country. After a stop in Minneapolis, MN, (nearly killing ourselves on the road the next day) and Billings, MT (where we thought we were going to get iced by a couple of 'cowboys') we arrived in Seattle. After milling about that burg for a couple days we flew into Valdez, AK, where we spent months jamming sharp objects into a fish's touch-hole "for a living."

I'll never forget our first day there, where after leaving our belongings in the factory's dormitory we took a stroll to the local liquor store.

"What kind of beer should we get?" my brother queried as we scanned the long list.

Our eyes made our way down the list, not by label but by price.

"Lucky Lager," we both agreed. Given our limited finances, the 99¢ price tag for 40 oz. was our best bet. We'd never heard of it, and franky it probably tasted like unpalatable sh*t, but it carried us through that summer along with "other stuff,"goofy hippie chicks and the feeling of not having a f*cking care in the world.

To me, 1994 is the touchstone... one I will strive to have again, yet know full well it's unattainable. Bad-Ass Atul hosts this week's and wants to know "What's yours?" What was the best year you ever had? Do you wish you were eighteen again or do you yearn for a whole summer, getting drunk with your brother whilst standing in fish entrails and living in a tent with maggots for neighbours?

3 comments:

Carrie said...

I don't know how people like you do it. How do you just pick up and leave? I wish I was like that.

Carmi said...

My best year: when I met the woman who would become my wife. Damn, what a magical time!

Stephen V Funk said...

small world... I think that was about the same time I up and quit my job and drove to Alaska.

Thankfully, I got a job in a gift shop instead of on a fishing boat.

Stayed for three years. Don't regret it.