One of the funniest things that interns and imports alike agree on about this town, is despite being very much a part of the mainland, there is a definite sense of always being on “island time” in Nome. For better or worse, the pace of life here is very laid back and unhurried. (And no, I don’t think it’s just because it’s legal to grown your own marijuana here…hehe). Most people here are simply very relaxed, and informal, which is kind of a nice break from my usual suburbia and metropolitan areas back home!
On the subject of home…there are some serious differences between my suburb of Cleveland, Ohio and the coastal town of Nome, Alaska!
- First of all, people rarely lock their doors and/or cars, which was strange at first, but it’s just the way of life here.
- Overall dress is quite informal as well; jeans and sweatshirts are the norm at the hospital, unless you’re wearing scrubs.
- Most of the time, you can leave your bike lying around without a lock, and it’ll still be there when you come back for it.
- The street is “busy” if there’s 3 cars in a row
- People recognize you and will probably talk to you within a few days of being in town…if you aren’t local, you stand out 🙂
- You can build bonfires on any beach out of anything burnable…driftwood, pallets, boxes…
- There are no stoplights (!)
- The majority of roads aren’t paved, they’re simply hard-packed dirt. Between the dirt roads and beach sand, it gets super dusty here. They actually have a truck that drives around spraying water behind it to keep the roads packed down!
- This one might be a little strange, but where I live, I constantly see squirrels, deer, chipmunks, raccoons, and sometimes opossums. Here in Nome, there are numerous birds and random dogs loitering about town, but no little mammals running through the streets! I actually kind of miss greedy little squirrels…
- I thought the gas prices at home were getting out of hand, but gas here is usually between 5-6 dollars per gallon! Yikes!
…And there are a few similarities (which are sometimes nice reminders of home). There is in fact one chain restaurant- a Subway. However not only is there a full-size movie theater attached to it, but there are NO 5-dollar footlongs…more like 7-dollar footlongs. But there is a great beach view, so I can’t complain too much 😉 It’s kind of nice not having a barrage of the same cookie-cutter eateries around town. I’ve also seen quite a few Subaru vehicles driving through town…since I drive a used Subaru at home (and love her), this makes me happy. The grocery store also carries a few varieties of sweet potato, and seeing as I am a self-proclaimed sweet ‘tater lover, I end up buying these guys regularly! Lastly, Alaska may be the land of the midnight sun, but it’s the same sun I see back in Ohio. Super cheesy…but when I look up at the sky, I know everyone is looking at the same burning ball of gas! Oh the feels 🙂
Enjoy your week everybody!!