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Hello from Alaska!

Posted by Kathy Torrence on Apr 8, 2008 in Books I'm Reading, Uncategorized

I’m writing this post from very cold Anchorage, Alaska at 6 in the morning AK time.  Why am I up at 6 in the morning posting to my blog?  Because I am still suffering from the dreaded “jet lag” and have not adjusted to the time difference yet.   I’m finding out that I’m not as young as I used to be – I’m a little bit slower to bounce back than I used to be now that I’m almost 40!!!!!

But I’m still glad to be here – we really needed to come on this trip to help define Alaska’s needs for their new system.  A lot of people have asked me exactly what I’m doing in my new job and why I needed to come here…I’m basically trying to further specify the details of some of the functions they need for their new FAA system. 

It’s kind of like this – Alaska wrote that they wanted…let’s say…apples (for an analogy).  Just a very high level need.

So…I had to try to expand on that and wrote that they I think they want green apples.

This was presented to Alaska to see if that’s really what they wanted.  They came back that what they really need is applesauce made from green apples.

So I write up another piece that says I think they want applesauce made from green apples with cinnamon served in a jar.

They read this and come back that what they actually need is applesauce made from green apples with cinnamon made by Mott’s served in a portable snack pack.

See how that goes?  Just substitute flight plans and weather for apples and you get the idea.  It’s my job to get the Alaska folks started and help them explain what they really need – and they need so much that we needed to meet face-to-face to get the ideas across in discussions and pictures.  Then I try to capture it in written words and we keep refining the ideas until we think we have it right.

Anyway…the flight up here was very long (two 5-6 hour legs – think flying cross-country and then cross-country again all in the same day) and on the first leg, I was stuck in a window seat…and I am slightly claustrophobic.  And the rather large man in the middle seat  kept invading my personal space by hogging the entire armrest and crossing his leg in front of my seat – it was a LONG 6 hours to say the least.

But during the flight, I managed to finish a book I’m reading – “Eat Pray Love” by Elizabeth Gilbert (not the girl who was in Little House on the Prairie).  I LOVED this book!  I feel like I had so much in common with the author.  We are both control freaks and our writing style is very similar.  In this book, she is just coming from a divorce and failed relationship (this we do NOT have in common – I’m in a great marriage!  But I can relate because I also went through a divorce when I was about the same age as the author) and decides to spend a year in Italy, India and Indonesia to try to find balance in her life using prayer and love.  If I have time later, I’ll post again with some of my favorite lines from the book – it really moved me.

On my second leg, I met a young man who is an ‘extreme’ skier – he was coming up here to be dropped onto a mountain by helicopter and ski down while being filmed for a documentary.  Wow.  I can’t even imagine doing something like that!  That idea together with the book I read made me take a look at my life and the types of things I do and the types of things I would never dream of doing…I’ll post more on that idea later. 

Right now, I have to go shower and get ready to go to work – one more quick thing. I didn’t have a chance to mention how absolutely breathtakingly beautiful it is up here.  I have a fabulous view of the snow-covered mountains from my room – that more than makes up for the long flight!

I wish I could post some photos, but I forgot the cable for my camera…it’ll have to wait until I get back…

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