the indelicate dance of the dogs

Casa de Flame and Ivan, one of the old married couples. Their sons, Loiste and Liekke still live at home.

Casa de Flame and Ivan, one of the old married couples. Their sons, Loiste and Liekki still live at home.

If you spend a significant amount of time with more dogs than people, you’ll find they have this way of becomingyour people. You start referring to them in human contexts: who’s crushing on whom, who makes up the old married couples, who had scandalous flings in the past, existing love…

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time flies, but to where?

the passing of time in Tiainen, Finland

the passing of time in Tiainen, Finland

Usvatanssin Kennel is the kind of place you find yourself thinking about long after you’ve left, the kind of place you come back to. It’s the kind of place you want to tell your friends and family about, but struggle to find the right way to accurately illustrate the memories. You see Picasso in your head, but your chosen words seem to assemble themselves…

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Usvatanssin Kennel

Monty the Monster, during a lunch break on a Sunday 40K run. Photo Cred: Mel

Monty the Monster, during a lunch break on a Sunday 40K run. Photo Cred: Mel

I recognized the doubt rooted deep in Charlotte’s eyes as I answered her question. I knew that look well; it had been plastered all over my face just three short weeks earlier.

“There are so many of them. How do you remember all of the names?”

“I…well…it’s actually pretty easy. I know it doesn’t seem like it now, but…

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28 degrees of separation

Minneapolis, Minnesota (my future home) on April 3. Photo cred Brett O (naturally SUPER excited about the snow).

Minneapolis, Minnesota (my future home) on April 3. Photo cred Brett O (naturally SUPER excited about the snow).

In the four years I traveled to Colorado for work, I always enjoyed when the weather reached that undisclosed temperature where everyone decides it is time to start eating outside again, somewhere between 50 and 60 degrees. Everyone on the university hospital campus takes their lunch…

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the money tree & the ticking clock

Mist dancing on the ice covered lake in the evening. Korvala, Finland

Mist dancing on the ice-covered lake at dusk. Korvala, Finland

The First of April, the Day of Fools, triggered my external Travel Clock. I can barelyhear the T-Clock ticking right now, but I’m aware of its existence out there, somewhere, slowly tocking, currently muffled by the thick, plush safety blanket made of cash-money. It’s hard to predict where or when the alarm will sound, rudely…

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Korvalan Kestikievari

Nanuck

Curious Nanuck

When you buy a one way ticket to anywhere on the premise of working for a family business in exchange for room and board, you are taking a gamble of sorts. What if you don’t get along with the other volunteers? Or hate the work? What if the family is horrible, or worse, they think you are horrible? What if there is no candy?!?

I’ve been in Lapland for a little over two weeks now…

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about those saunas…

let’s talk about saunas

40k with my first six dog team...the kind of activity that requires an after sauna. Korvala, Finland.

40K with my first six dog team…exactly the kind of activity that lends itself well to an after sauna. Special thanks to Hiutale, Sievä, Sirius, Jompa, Seemi and Julja and our swap dog Fassu for hauling my ass all that way. Korvala, Finland

According to my lovely host Jaana, the Finnish have two cure-alls: saunas and vodka.

I’ve been…

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hello from the top of the world, arctic lapland

My first husky safari.
My first husky safari.

My first husky safari.

Seven days ago, a tornado ripped through Life As I Know It, shook things up in a snow globe fashion, and dropped me and a backpack overstuffed (like, really overstuffed) with Life Part Deux in Arctic Lapland. I’ve completed the Quit Your Day Job phase and I’m in full transition to See The World.My brain caught wind of this and quickly deleted eight years of work data to…

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a love letter to wisconsin

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wisconsin capitol in autumn, Lady Wisconsin, moving Forward.

I don’t know how else to put this. It’s not you. It’s me. It’s really, reallyme. I’ve never met a state like you, and I’ve been to almost all of them. You are truly beautiful, in not only your appearance, but your people, your ways, your Beer. You’ve taught me so much in these 33 years we’ve been together. You’ve taught me how to…

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