I have now lived in Alaska for half of my life. 8 months ago I moved to the town of Ester, which is about 5 miles outside of Fairbanks. I have noted in my AK stint, that there is a certain balance to Fairbanks.

On one side (oddly, to the south) is North Pole. A veritable den of strange drugs, strange people and stranger still stories. The lamp posts and fire hydrants are striped up like candy canes. They boast a 50 ft. Santa Claus (who god-like beams down with a certain beatific spookiness over the highway), which they proudly parade the ALL summer tourists past.

On the north side is Ester. A fairy tale-ish town of artists and "tundra wookies". In Ester it is the norm to find moose in your driveway (don't get out of the car), spiders in your outhouse (few folks partake in the American luxury of running water), and the neighbors playing golf in the (beautifully dirt) roads... all at 2am. I was surprised to see a tour bus pass my house the other morning. I stood outside in the wet pseudo-snow, groggy, (with a cup of coffee and a blanket around my shoulders) as the bus rolled by real slow, tourists pressed to windows, snapping shots of my cabin.

Every day is a definite... experience in Ester.

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