THE BETTER SIDE OF CHAOS

By: joealaska , 6:55 AM GMT on August 16, 2012

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Well done UK. Obviously everyone liked your perspective of the Olympics.

I still do not know why she does not have her own blog. It would help me as I could visit when I am able. Not easy to do this right now.

Wish I could have seen the Olympics. Wish I could have watched the highlights. Wish I had a day off.

I saw a little. Heard TEAM USA barely won via my own blog. Sad.

I was channel surfing and saw a cooking show (Master Chef?) where they cooked on the rim of the Grand Canyon.

It brought back memories. My baby sister FRANKENTUCKY / Yellafella worked on the North Rim of the Grand Canyon for about 10 years. For me, a DREAM JOB.

If you have been to the Grand Canyon, I bet you have been to the South Rim. 90% of the human race does the same thing. Hence the crowds you saw.

NORTH Rim is the prize. Less crowds as it is a bit of a drive. As you head north from the south rim to cruise to the north, signs advise it is 160 miles to get there (I think).

But I had several opportunities to take advantage of the situation with my sister. They close down mid-October, actually closing a gate. At one point I had the key to that gate.

From that gate, there is a 60 mile ride to the rim. The road stops at the rim, a sudden drop off. There is a lodge (now only housing a nice restaurant) and about 200 cabins. My sister and her now defunct boyfriend MIKE maintained those buildings over the winter. They had snow machines on the roofs. If there was a medical emergency, they had a 60 mile snow machine ride or call a helicopter.

he gates close in October as the chance of a heavy snow is now in play. But it may NOT happen for some time. So it was the best time to visit my sister. We did this a couple of times. CASA was there, as well as the folks.

And we experienced some of the best cookouts ever for me. Trust me, that says something. We did Cape Royal and Point Imperial. But the best was right at the lodge. There were rocking chairs for a few hundred to watch the sunset. But now it was just US. It was OUR porch. Hard on the edge of the canyon. Straight down. Unbelievable views. The sun going down and it all changes every few minutes. Color unlimited. Constantly taking pictures.

Truly a unique experience. Nobody around but us, something thousands were paying for a few weeks prior, now there were about 12 of us.

Unfortunately Fran is no longer there. I miss it.

Another guy abandoned his job here, the current senior guy. It is all good. I would prefer he leave as he is not usually showing up. Hired a new guy and he is doing great. Building a new core of people who want to work. Future looks good. Present is tough.

Last week the ABANDON GUY set the brake on the wing truck and it did not SET. As he was unloading the truck, it moved forward. There is a plate that bridges the gap between truck and dock, but it was not enough as the truck rolled away about 20 feet. The gap widened, and the forklift and he dropped to the ground. He could have been killed. But the forklift landed upright with him astraddle. I walked out just after it happened. Frankly, I was more upset than he.

Our warehouse is being occupied by a family of ground squirrels. They run in and out like the birds who did the same thing during the winter. They are pretty friendly.

GNU GUY has been gone for a week or so, trying to get back. Stuck in Anchorage on standby, flight delayed due to fog. Meanwhile we have a loaner guy from Seattle doing very well. NEWER GUY.

GNU R.

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15. insideuk
5:41 PM GMT on August 22, 2012
I too noticed it was 62f at Joes place at 4.30am (local time). It's gotten much cooler since he woke up.

It's not global warming. It's an unattended grill event.

All doused out now Joseph, is it?
Member Since: February 28, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 1340
14. dotmom
2:05 PM GMT on August 22, 2012
Looks like it is pretty warm up there - well at least warm.
Member Since: April 3, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 1136
13. insideuk
2:46 PM GMT on August 18, 2012
Thanks Casa, appreciate the thoughts.

And now I know for certain it was YOU that visited the north rim with Joe I have a better picture of how those mile deep gorges of the Grand Canyon appear in real life – without the aid of any PHOTOSHOP editing package.

It’s littered with little white balls isn’t it?

I know.

You two would never consider damaging the natural beauty of the place.

Thank goodness Dotmom knew how to handle a mule on a slope.
Member Since: February 28, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 1340
12. dotmom
10:53 AM GMT on August 18, 2012
Ylee: You were so right on the warning for the storm(s) coming through on Thursday night. A house about 3/4 mile away (as the crow flies) was struck by lightening and totally destroyed by fire. Too close for comfort.
Member Since: April 3, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 1136
11. dotmom
2:34 PM GMT on August 17, 2012
Well Casa, what a surprise to hear from you. A good surprise.

I just have one question. Do you think some people are more worried about how Mitt made/spends/saves his money -- than how Obama spends mine? Just sayin'. :)
Member Since: April 3, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 1136
10. casaford
1:59 PM GMT on August 17, 2012
Hello Joe Bloggers.

UK - Loved your posts about the Olympics. Good on the British citizens and especially your athletes. One can't be anything but impressed by the huge impact British athletes had on the games. Even with all of the initial hype the games went off without incident, were very well run and addictive to watch. Sorry about Mitt's big mouth. The difference between he and Obama is that Obama is a communicator, however Mitt's probably better a balancing a check book.

I've sat on the porch with Joe and Yellafella at the North Rim. We grilled t-bones right on the edge of a sheer cliff during sunset with beer in hand. It's a once in a life time oppertunity (thanks again Yellafella). As I get older I often wonder if time wouldn't be better spent letting someone else bear the burden of running a small business while I as an employee could take advantage of time-off touring more of our beautiful country. I'm sure I'll reconcile that issue at a later date.

I've seen Joe shape and train new team members many times in the past. It is nothing new for him and he definately gets it done. I know that all will be fine and he'll be better off when it's done. I have no worries about it, that is why he is there.

a great weekend to all!
Member Since: April 15, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 50
9. osdianna
5:37 AM GMT on August 17, 2012
I have never seen the Grand Canyon except from 33,000 feet, but you have me convinced about the north rim. One of the main reason I left California was the crowds have spoiled it for me, so you know I would love a front porch rocker at the edge of that ditch shared by just 12 people...all of them friends and family. Don't you treasure those kinds of memories?

Meanwhile, while the heat continues around the country, we got up to 77 degrees today for at least an hour...then the fog came in and it dropped back down to 58...yep, 58! My walk on the beach was in fog so thick I was nervous about somebody hitting the dog and me (driving on the beach is allowed in Washington state...stupid law!). I actually had a hoodie on to keep me warm. When I got home the local news said the temp just 25 miles inland was 81. Seattle was 87 at 5PM...but it's actually inland...just sits on an inland sea.

I think we are going to be really crowded this weekend; whenever we get this kind of heat, everyone heads for the beach...that's here, a 2 & 1/2 hr drive from Seattle, so I go into low profile stage; get all my grocery shopping done before they head out here. We have one local grocery store...gets real crowded. I can handle it because it's only 3 months of the year.

Hang in there Joe!
Member Since: March 5, 2009 Posts: 27 Comments: 458
8. dotmom
2:09 AM GMT on August 17, 2012
Thanks Ylee. Guess the first wave has come through. Wonder what is coming behind it. So far not too bad. Heavy lightening and thunder. Of course it is dark and we cannot see how windy it might be. But I don't think it is too bad at this time.

Thanks again. Dotmom
Member Since: April 3, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 1136
7. Ylee
10:19 PM GMT on August 16, 2012
Heads up, Dotmom! Severe stuff headed your way!
Member Since: February 3, 2011 Posts: 86 Comments: 14577
6. Arbie
4:57 PM GMT on August 16, 2012
The grand canyon as Joe describes it in his winter trips sounds like heaven to me. What a wonderful experience to have had. I think it is nice you all have it to miss, reminisce and share. One of those things you can ponder back on and escape for a bit when times are tough.

Still hot here. SE Texas, imagine that. I am inside in an office all day, so it doesn't really matter much to me. I wish I could experience the real weather more, even if it is very hot.

I really miss being outside more.

insideUK, I really enjoy your blogging. Keep it up. I know what you mean about having to pull something out of just your own life and thoughts though, although other people might find it more interesting than you think. I guarantee you your blog will get visitors just because you post, since some people just visit all the blogs with recent posts. It would be an interesting experiment.
Member Since: December 3, 2009 Posts: 5 Comments: 1081
5. dotmom
4:56 PM GMT on August 16, 2012
I think I have talked about my ride into the Grand Canyon (North Rim) before, but, hold on - I'm going to tell you one more time (at least!). When I was 70 - like in OLD - Fran and her friend Mike and I took the mule ride to Roaring Springs (along with a lot of tourists). That was quite a ride. Bottom line (to say the least) is coming up is harder than going down. And yes, the bottom was a wee bit irritated the next day! It was all worth it.
Member Since: April 3, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 1136
4. bearpaints
12:24 PM GMT on August 16, 2012
I love the Grand Canyon and would of loved to know what it was like without people. I'm not one for crowds over 10 people I get nerous. But the feeling of peace and vastness is there. I have some great pictures from the rim. Also when we blow up the pictures you can see people on the river far below.
Also one of your general managers used to work at one of the stores there for a few years. He loved it.

I can't wait for the time when hubby and I are back to living under one roof and the time to hit the back roads on our quad. We are not the speedy kind because you never know what you will miss. I would upload more pictures, but since my puter has it's elec cord mostly in the bucket till time and money allows I will have to kick back and wait.

Great Blog Joe. Hope your people get lined up fast and steady. I understand what it's like to be short handed, big orders and running your butt off. Just something that needs to be done.
Member Since: January 15, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 259
3. yellafella
11:26 AM GMT on August 16, 2012
Don't panic. We used shovels and snow blowers to remove snow from roofs of historic buildings.
Funny, one time when Joe came to the North Rim after the regular tourist season, it snowed. It was the first time a friend of his had experienced snow.

I miss the rim and saying, "I live at the end of HWY 67." or "I live at the North Rim of the Grand Canyon."

When you visit the North Side, you are committed. Travelers better use a map not a GPS. The bridge they talk about going across the canyon is a footbridge not a road!!
Member Since: April 3, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 76
2. Dodabear
11:09 AM GMT on August 16, 2012
UK, I don't have the answer to the "roof" question of yours but I have had experience in that area.

My guess it that the machines are parked on the roof because when they need them, the snow will be at the level of the roof or higher, making ground level stored machines useless
Member Since: July 28, 2001 Posts: 0 Comments: 2279
1. insideuk
9:48 AM GMT on August 16, 2012
The Olympics was a great source of blog fodder, and I the enjoyed writing. But I don’t have ANY plans to write my own blog for 3 reasons.

1. My life/ job is way too uninteresting. Really. I would struggle to find ANYTHING to blog about on a regular basis. I can comment here because new ideas bounce off Pudden Head’s contribution. I reside in his crab pot and await fresh bait. If he chooses to hydraulically lift and tip me out onto the sorting table for closer inspection once in a while that’s fine. Being female, I’ll likely survive.
Depends on whether he engages the ‘dogs’ (that’s one for Deadliest Catch fans…)

2. I’m foreign. My humour is too easily misconstrued. Imagine all those new people popping in once, misunderstanding, getting offended. Therein lies true potential for sheer spaghetti like trip hazards of culturally crossed lines. Do I need all that in my life? Here, you good folks are adept at acquisitioning and redistributing a pinch of salt accordingly. I appreciate you all for that, I’d kiss your feet – but I fear the sodium content.

3. If I started blogging, I seriously fear Joe would STOP. He’s the reason I’m here at all.


I love the idea of visiting the NORTH RIM. I love the idea of plonking down in a rocking chair out on the porch, having great food and drinks and watching the sun go down - without the crowds spoiling it all.

Tourists can be a right pain in the arse when you want one of the natural wonders of the world all to yourself.

Just one question. Why did they park the snow machines on the roof? I don’t get it. Surely a snow machine would be better stored closer to the ground, therefore avoiding that initial big bone breaking bumpage on the 60 mile trip to the emergency room with whatever painful ailments you felt warranted the trip (plus addition of a few more).

It’s the kind of arrangement your ABANDON GUY would think nothing of.

In fact he’d probably think it better to bump the short cut to the ER via south rim…

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About joealaska

With Dutch Harbor in the rear view window, I am camped out in Louisville, KY. looking for employment and a new chapter.