15,000 miles of travel in Europe without an itinerary
yielded many stories.
Here are some from a favorite country.
Last February, I sat shivering in a taxi on a cold morning as the driver asked me “a donde quieres ir?” He’d thoughtfully spoken in Spanish, as that was the language I’d used when I slid, gratefully, into the warmth of his backseat. Thirty minutes earlier I’d jumped off the train, tote slung over my shoulder, and marched purposely through the small station in Evora Portugal. In my search for early morning coffee I’d barely noticed the exquisite blue-tile murals or the lone taxi. Failing my quest, I’d returned to the train station, the only constant in my 90 days of travel with no itinerary. Staring out the window, and for the first time in my life, I answered the question all taxi drivers ask stating: “I have absolutely no idea.” He smiled, and replied in perfect English: “I will drop you in front of the Tourist Information Center.”
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The Moose Creek wildfire between Palmer and Sutton is now forty-six percent contained, according to the Alaska Division of Forestry, and that number is expected to continue upward.
On Tuesday, officials had expressed hope that calmer winds would make fighting the 303-acre wildfire less difficult. That appears to have happened, and Incident Commander Phil Blydenburgh says firefighters were no longer forced to “chase” the fire, and were able to start holding it in place.
The Division of Forestry says the fire was mainly smoldering and creeping on Tuesday, with some open flames and tree “torching” in the interior. Blydenburgh expects the containment percentage to continue to rise as firefighters use hoses, engines, and bulldozers to ensure the wildfire doesn’t spread.
The Moose Creek fire started over the weekend and grew to over 300 acres. At its peak, more than ninety personnel were involved in the effort to extinguish the fire. Some resources are now being demobilized as crews come closer to full containment.
On Tuesday afternoon, Alaska State Troopers responded to a call of a man threatening people with a baseball bat in Downtown Talkeetna.
According to Troopers, 29-year-old Jensen Green destroyed private property and made at least one person fear imminent injury during the incident.
Troopers arrested Green and transported him to the Mat-Su Pretrial Facility in Palmer. He is charged with fourth-degree assault and fifth-degree criminal mischief.
More than ninety people are currently fighting the Moose Creek wildfire between mile 54 and 58 of the Glenn Highway.
The Moose Creek fire is currently estimated at 328 acres. The fire began over the weekend, and strong winds caused it to grow rapidly. According to the Alaska Division of Forestry, winds in the area have been between twenty-five and thirty miles-per-hour with gusts of up to sixty miles-per-hour.
Officials hope that calmer winds will make containing the Moose Creek wildfire easier. Winds in the area are expected to be about half as strong as over the weekend.
In addition to the Moose Creek fire, firefighters responded to a five-acre fire on Monday that was started by a downed power line. Ground crews and helicopters were able to contain the new fire before it spread significantly.
As of Tuesday morning, the Moose Creek Fire is twenty-two percent contained.
Scott Holcomb stands in front of the Ole Dahl cabin. Photo: Katie Writer – KTNA
by: Katie Writer – KTNA
A historic Talkeetna cabin has been placed back on its foundation after structural restoration work. Grants from the Alaska Association of Historic Preservation and Talkeetna Community Council revenue sharing funded the restoration of the Ole Dahl Cabin near the Talkeetna Historical Society Museum. KTNA’s Katie Writer spoke with Scott Holcomb, who did a substantial portion of the structural work, about the project.
Talkeetna Historical Society Executive Director Sue Deyoe, says more work remains to be done on the historic cabin, which will require additional funding.
Mat-Su Valley Firefighters spent the weekend battling a fire that has spread to more than 300 acres near Sutton.
The late-season fire was reported as twenty-five percent contained as of Sunday afternoon, according to Mat-Su Borough Public Information Officer Patty Sullivan. Cold, dry conditions have made containing the fire, known officially as the Moose Creek Fire, more difficult. According to the Alaska Division of Forestry, firefighters faced temperatures below freezing and significant wind chill, with gusts up to forty miles-per-hour.
In addition to driving the Moose Creek Fire, winds have also started at least two small fires of their own. The Alaska Division of Forestry says on its AK Fire Info website that power lines downed by the gusty weather started a pair of small grass fires Sunday afternoon.
On Monday morning the Alaska Division of Forestry announced on its Facebook page that the Glenn Highway would be closed for about half an hour while a fire line was bulldozed to protect the road. The post says flames had reached within about seventy-five feet of the highway early Monday morning.
As of Sunday, approximately fifty firefighters from multiple agencies were working on containing the Moose Creek Fire.
The night sky over the Susitna Valley:
its waning moon,
what to expect with this week’s Orionid meteors,
where to see the stars of the summer triangle, and more.
Because of hazardous materials, the removal of the building required special care. Photo – Katie Writer, KTNA
by: Katie Writer – KTNA
As new visions for community gathering centers develop, some Talkeetnans witnessed the sight of an old friend, the former library, heading down the road.
The familiar green building that used to be the Talkeetna library is now gone.
The Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation (ADEC) conducted the abatement with grant funding from the Environmental Protection Agency. The grant was requested by the Mat Su Borough. Read More »
The Alaska Democratic Party is accusing the Republican nominee for House District 10 of lying about his academic history, but the Republican Party’s chairman says the candidate did nothing wrong.
In a press release issued Thursday morning, the Alaska Democratic Party alleges that David Eastman did not take part in a “Graduate Fellowship” at the University of Oxford in England as he claims in the 2016 official election pamphlet printed by the State of Alaska. Read More »