Back in the Mountains

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We moved back from house sitting at Auk Bay to Chicken Ridge last night, exchanging quick access to beach life for the quieter mountains. Staying in the neighborhood, Aki and I walk past the craftsmen houses along Basin Road where purple delphiniums and purple-red fushsia blooms stand near native plants fading to fall yellow.  Under the old Basin Road trestle bridge, strips of fog rise from Gold Creek to join a blanket of clouds that hides the top half of Mount Juneau.  Seeing no traffic, car or foot, I let Aki off her lead. On a normal walk she would use this freedom to dash out and back, marking the area with her pee. Today she stays close, stopping when I do. I look up after taking a photograph to see her starring back with apparent concern.  I find peace in this hemmed in valley with its cloudy cap. She must not. Rather than climb into the clouds, I lead Aki across a Gold Creek footbridge and onto the old flume that feeds a small hydro electric plant near the Indian Village. She relaxes enough to dash ahead on the trail boards that enclose the flume. Charged with recent rain the flume carries a noisy load of water. Aki waits for me where a side trail drops down to  Gold Creek, as if suggesting it as an alternative.  I accept and follow her to the creek and then home.

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