Wednesday 23rd July 2:00 p.m Fairbanks, Alaska
Gotta get a plan! July is slipping away, and I've got sooo many places to see and people to visit, I'd never get around to it all even if I had a private jet. I know a lot of people who've invited me are wondering what the hell I'm up to, travelling with no idea of where I'm heading. Well, I'm trying! The two determining factors at the moment are: immigration restrictions, and money. Money is simple; I have none. Therefore I have no option but to go where I can get some. That's pretty easy to understand. Some readers have offered to give me some work, and obviously that is a priority. Also, immigration restrictions mean that I will have to do the United States before Canada. That also is quite simple; I can stay in the States only until early October, but Canada will let me stay until December. To those kind folk in Canada who were expecting me sooner, I'm sorry but if I did it the other way, my U.S. visa would be expiring while I was travelling Canada. It's possible, but not certain, that I may be able to re-enter the States again later. With the latest security crackdowns, it's no longer possible to renew your U.S. visa simply by crossing into Canada or Mexico. I'd have to go outside those three countries in order to re-enter! That would mean a return flight to the UK, the Carribean or Central America, depending on whereabouts in North America I am at that time. How will I afford such a flight? Who knows!
So, if I miss you this time round, don't be insulted. It's just a matter of necessity. Also, I'm unable at present to use Outlook Express, where all my address books are set up. This makes it exhaustingly time consuming for me to send emails. I'm sure you'll appreciate that it wouldn't be much of a trip for me- and wouldn't make for very interesting reading in my journal- if I spent my whole day writing emails. So that's my apology if you feel I've ignored you. Now, here's my plan!
From Fairbanks, I don't have any more invitations until Skagway. I'm aiming to get off my butt and hit the road tomorrow or the next day. To get to Skagway, Alaska, I have to re-enter Canada and head south from Dawson City to Whitehorse, before crossing back into south eastern Alaska. I'm trying to make contact with a couple of couchsurfers in Juneau, south of Skagway, and may be able to catch the ferry down to Juneau. I'm still hoping to be able to travel by ferry through the Inside Passage, from Juneau, Alaska to Prince Rupert, British Columbia. It's a two day, two night ferry ride and the route is world famous for it's pristine scenery, glaciers, whale watching and other wildlife. The one way trip costs $150 and in case you haven't read my earlier journal updates, I'm appealing for help with the cost. I left Australia without any money of my own, and have been using my credit card for essentials so far. Contributions have been helping a lot- thanks to Judith and also Rosemary for your help towards the ferry fare. Please if you are enjoying the website, and would be interested to see photos and hear about the ferry ride down the coast of Alaska, scroll to the bottom of the page, and click on the PayPal button. It'll only hurt for a little while!
Okay..the plan! From Prince Rupert, I should be able to get back down as far as Vancouver in a day's hitchhiking, then across the border to Seattle, Washington. From Seattle, there are two options that I'm considering. One is to hitchhike to Denver via Salt Lake City, then across through Tennessee to New York, heading up through the states of Kentucky and Ohio, one of the few areas I've not travelled on previous trips to the States. The other option is to hitch all the way down the west coast to Los Angeles, then cross to Colorado via my old favourite Las Vegas, and continue on as per plan A. This would be easier for me, as I have loads of invitations all the way down the coast, never more than a few hours from one to the next. It would also be interesting for the website, I think. Trouble is, it would be time consuming, keeping in mind that I'd really like to be in New York City for the 9-11 commemorations. After that, I guess I'll use up my remaining few weeks in the north east of the country. I'm especially looking forward to the New England area in the fall.
So I guess I still haven't solved the mystery, but those are my two options. As I said, I can't be visiting everyone and every state in the remaining two months of my U.S. stay. If I miss you this time round, hopefully I'll catch you next time. Ideally, I'd like to come back to the States after Canada, and head down the east coast, across the southern states, and venture down to Central and South America. We'll see.....