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Finding gold in the Alaskan wilderness

September 20, 2014

imagesIve been walking this river bank for almost two decades now, with it’s many twists and turns firmly etched into my memory, today however it’s predictable contours were, in places, changed. I attributed this reshaping of the river banks to the 7.9 earthquake that occurred a number of days ago. As I approached one section, where the river enters a narrow ten foot canyon, the old bank is gone and the newly exposed earth was revealing it’s secrets. The bright sunlight over my shoulder made the drab earth seem to sparkle, and as I reached down and retrieved a handful of dirt my breathe stopped…for in my grasp was a nugget of the purest gold I have ever seen.

I can only wish that this was a true story, but alas though I have traveled many miles along side many of Alaska’s remote streams I have never found a nugget of gold. However, in real life, there are many more important discoveries one can encounter. Like the feeling you get when your child first looks at you and smiles or finding the little ‘love notes’ you spouse may leave for you to happen upon while they are away. And, of course, finally finding that someone to walk down life’s road with you. For many of us our life’s partner has come and gone so we fill the sections of this road of life with friends. For some of these friends the journey with us is brief and others remain for much longer periods of time.

Nearing that 70 year mark I have learned finding someone that understands you and accepts you for what your are is just like finding that nugget of gold. Unlike your spouse who said till death do us part, with a friend there is no verbal commitment to bind the partnership. It must be a balance of mutual interest topped off with the solid enjoyment of the ‘others’ company to keep the friendship alive. A motivating factor for my moving to Alaska was the people I encountered who lived away from the cities, with their innate and at times brutal honesty and openness. When one finds someone who has these qualities and also shares some of your own points of view it is a discovery worth cultivating.

So when one chances upon a potential discovery
it is always worthwhile to explore further
and just maybe find that golden nugget!

6 Comments leave one →
  1. September 20, 2014 8:47 pm

    That’s wonderful, Pete. That first paragraph got me really excited – I thought you really had found that nugget. After the big let down in the next sentence, I really did find your nugget of gold. Meaning words to live by. Thanks, Pete.


  2. September 21, 2014 12:11 am

    This is super


  3. Jon permalink
    September 21, 2014 9:11 am

    This, along with the fall color pics, make this one of your most beautiful, heartfelt postings I’ve seen on your website, Pete.


  4. September 21, 2014 2:01 pm

    Love the analogy in this piece, Pete!! Friends who accept you for what your are and just let you be ‘you’ are worth more that a hundred gold nuggets and are just about as rare. We never know why we meet some of the folks we do on life’s path but one thing I’ve learned is to always be ‘available’ and attentive to new people; one can never know when they just might turn out to be a true nugget…


  5. Raven permalink
    September 29, 2014 7:40 pm

    Very well written Pete. Your words are so very true!!! Now a days, finding someone to walk life’s path you is as unique as finding that big gold nugget. A wise man once told me and a room full of people at a wedding, “Communication is key in any relationship” But also Love. Love runs deep in your soul when you find that “ONE” person who will always be there, no matter what happens! Just like life, it is what you make it and who you want in it, including those friends and loved one who accept you for you. You are an amazing writer Pete and there is a lot of truth in your writing!


  6. October 21, 2014 7:31 am

    Hi Pete, I read your first words of this article and immediately told my uncle that you found the gold nugget. haha… then I told him you didn`t find the gold nugget :) but still your text is great. I will never forget the christmas time we spent together in texas!


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