Tuesday, August 22nd
I haven't yet decided where Anchorage ranks amongst the other cities as a place to let your anxieties keep you up all night. In the summer, is it good because you would have been awake all night anyway unused to that infamous midnight sun? Is it good because being kept up all night is more a matter of minutes than hours? Is it bad because there is no chance, really, to make up for lost sleep? Is it bad because you can't cloak the world in the dark and even pretend to sleep, to distract, from your emotional wreckage? Is it all the worse because you're unable to pretend your anxieties are bound to the night and eviscerated by the daylight when the sun never sets, and when dawn is at four-in-the-morning, there is no one to call because, back home, everyone is still in their pajamas. No one has had coffee yet. When you decide to drown yourself in martinis at eleven-at-night, your best friend closed down their favorite bar an hour ago, stumbled home, had a nightcap, and passed out with time to spare before you can find a seat at the rail.
The road is always isolating. That distance is one of the things I find beautiful about Alaska. The people here are boisterous and social. Tuesday at midnight may as well be eight p.m. anywhere else - maybe because, to many, it feels as such. Somehow, though, no one is here alone which leaves you looking like the kid in middle school who didn't get the memo about deodorant and now has six empty bar stools to their right at an otherwise full bar.
Nowhere is good to be besieged by one's own mind, but Anchorage may be the worst. If not that, it may be the best.