my visit to the last frontier
If you follow me on instagram you know I was recently in Alaska to do some red flower training with the Canyon Ranch Spa Club teams. I visited 5 different ships including Celebrity, Oceania, and Regent cruise lines. People often think when I go away on these trips that I am seeing massage clients, which is not the case. Although, it would make me seem pretty cool and my massage seem SO good that I’m in demand around the country! What I do, whether on ships or at a hotel spa, is talk about products, and train therapists how to do treatments specific to the company. We go through key ingredients, benefits, and how to use the products in the treatment. I basically talk for 8 hours, which is quite the opposite of my typical day where I’m quiet for hours at a time!
Back to Alaska…my husband Tim tagged along so after I finished training we explored. The majestic scenery surrounded us and once we ventured from the ¼ mile stretch of “downtown” filled with tourists and souvenir shops we seemed to have it all to ourselves. We drove from one end of the road to the other, actually marked with signs that read END. We hiked, mostly in the misty rain (aka ‘liquid sunshine’ as the locals call it), which is something we don’t do often at home, which will hopefully change. The trails were like something out of a Lord of the Rings movie, lush greenery, moss covered rocks, thousands of pine trees, and crystal clear flowing water. We felt miles from civilization and barely saw another person for hours. It was quiet yet noisy with birdsong, streams, and the wind. You just wanted to touch everything and I’m not gonna lie, at times I did stop to hug a few trees. Sometimes our hikes took us to the empty beaches along the coastline where we collected sea glass and rocks. I’m always drawn to rocks and manage to come home from any trip with a few in my suitcase so I found it challenging to limit myself to just a handful! We saw a few eagles and a few bears, and what Alaska trip would be complete without seeing a glacier right? We did the touristy thing and visited the Mendenhall Glacier, which was next to a spectacular and powerful waterfall. I don’t profess to have magic powers but every so often, in the right environment, my hands buzz and man were they humming the closer I got to that waterfall and the energy it emitted. It was as if I was getting recharged! The next day we hiked next to the glacier with a couple of locals to see it from a different perspective and it was even more spectacular.
I left “the last frontier” with a feeling of expansion (yet weighted down with all that sea glass and rocks!). The wide-open spaces, crisp air, and shear height of the surrounding mountains are something we don’t experience at the Jersey Shore. Don’t get me wrong, we have some pretty fantastic beaches and woods…it’s just, different. Looking up at that expansive, starry Alaskan sky on the last night we could faintly make out the Milky Way and it was humbling to say the least.
I’m so fortunate to be able to not only have a job that I enjoy, but to also be able to visit such amazing places. My destination doesn’t have to be as seemingly “grand” as Alaska, or Italy, it’s the experience and perspective that travel offers no matter what the city or country. For me it’s the vegan restaurants I seek out, the conversations I have with the locals, the cultures to which I’m exposed, the off-the-beaten-path places I visit while there. The more I travel the more I want to travel…and the longer my list of places to see grows!