Saturday, May 14, 2011
Men Are From Alaska, Women Are From Hawaii: The Art of Learning How to Compromise
Aaaaahhhhhhhh Maui. Some of you know that I like it there. If you don't know me--I like it there. It is certainly my tropical getaway of choice. Some people are less picky--they like Chuckie Cheese or toe socks. I'm much higher maintenance. Go big or go home. I have vowed that someday I will be an island girl and take up residency there. I already have plans in the works to become a property developer on Maui and will be very happy living out the rest of my life in a bikini with SPF 45 on (because I am of Norwegian descent and burn crisp like a tater tot under a broiler without it). Every night at 8:00 pm I will likely be sipping on a pina colada, watching the moon over the ocean, and listening to the sound of waves gently crashing against the shore (sorry, Kenny Chesney--I know you sing, "It's Five O Clock Somewhere" but like I said, I'm high maintenance and I'm an 8 p.m. gal for my bevies). I have been looking forward to going back to Maui this summer. Tristan (my boyfriend) and I were planning a trip for July. It was going to be fabulous...*insert sound of record needle scratching across record*
Maui is not going to happen in July. I'm super bummed and have had a hard time the past couple days trying to wrap my head around this. Tristan lives in Alaska and is building a house up there. Anyone who knows anything about Alaska knows that there are only two seasons in that state, WINTER, and CONSTRUCTION SEASON. Unfortunately July happens to be smack-dab in the middle of the latter. So, yes--he is up against some deadlines to build before the flurries of 2011 start to fly again up there, and I am pouting from 3,000 miles away trying to figure out how to make myself feel better about all of this. As some of you may have seen in my Facebook status recently, he did offer for me to come up there and help him paint his new interior drywall (once it is actually up--it's a hypothetical at this point). I was less than thrilled with this idea--mostly because I really don't want to go to Alaska. Hawaii and Alaska are two opposite ends of the spectrum. It would be like somebody who thought they were going on a trip to Paris, only to find that they didn't win the big prize and that the consolation prize was an all expense paid trip to Paducah, Kentucky. Please don't get me wrong--I love Alaska. I recently almost moved back up there. It is beautiful...but it is frickin' freezing cold for 9 months out of the year and not that warm, and mosquito infested for all the rest of it. It is also just very different people-wise, too--I feel like I fit in there about 25% of the time, and the other 75% makes me feel like I'm being Punked on an episode of the Red Green Show.
Some might be saying, "But you have the chance to go up to Alaska!!!!" and you are right--it is kind of a nice idea. But the Alaska I go to is not the Alaska you see on the television or in the magazines when they are offering elaborate cruises and swanky stays at hunting lodges. My trips are nothing like that--and certainly not a super stellar consolation prize for not going to Maui while simultaneously using up 36 hours of my paid time off. Yes, I'm griping...thank you very much...
"What do you mean Alaska isn't like what we see in magazines?" I mean that I'm not going to be somewhere where I can walk out on a deck and see a pod or orcas, or in the middle of a quaint mountain town at a lodge that has the heads of 9,000 fuzzy animals nailed to the walls with a crackling fire and a bear skin rug in front of it. I go to the part that has an astronomically high ratio of people to Bubba teeth. Let me just clarify--there are a fair bit of what I would consider "normal" people there as well. I passed a girl in Fred Meyer (a grocery store) on my last trip to Palmer, Alaska, and she was decked to the nines and she came straight up to me (I was also decked in my normal girlie attire), she grabbed onto me like we were sisters and said, "OMG!!! I love your outfit!!!" and I was like, "OMG!!! I love yours, too!". We were so thrilled to find another person "like" ourselves up there--I felt like we were on one of those TV shows that reunites long lost family members. That's what happens when you're a fashionista caught in a sea of flannel and Carhartts--but there are some people up there who dress and act like seasoned lower 48ers (that would be the 48 states located geographically south and east of the state of Alaska). So nope, nope, nope...I'm going to be in the middle of Palmer and Wasilla, Alaska (the Valley)--a good 45-50 minutes from the nearest Nordstrom (yes...they do have Nordstom in Anchorage...they sell the highest amount of flannel miniskirts at that store per capita than anywhere else. And I'm kidding...Gucci doesn't make flannel...).
So yes...Maui is on the back burner for the next few months. It does appear I will probably be made to go kicking and screaming against my will up to Palmer to spend what should've been my Maui vacation of pina coladas, sand, and salty air. I will be rebelling and filling Tristan's house full of blow up palm trees, island music, and painting dry wall in my bikini. Good thing he put a large jacuzzi in his house so I can at least pretend I'm at the pool. I'm also planning on convincing him to forego some of his lighting plans and embrace the tiki lights--at least while I'm up there. It is frustrating though. Tristan has helped people build and build and build up there and now that he is building everyone has fallen off the face of the earth. Awesome how that works. I'm just tired of playing the, "Let's see how long it takes one man to build a house" from 3,000 miles away. It's not as much fun as it sounds...
Men are from Alaska (Mars), Women are from Hawaii (Venus)--Maui, Hawaii to be exact.