Part 4: Into the glaciers
Alaska the week before the cruise set sail, I'd driven up
to see Mt. Denali, the great one, paying $160 for an hour's
"flightseeing." We climbed into the tiny prop
plane arranged by weight. I sat in back with 3 cameras (1
1 b&w, 1 SLR). We flew into Denali, into the glaciers.
I gazed at
the mountain face, otherworldly and coming fast, and completely
lost it. Face awash in tears, was I close to God, or dying?
The woman in the next seat put her arm around me, while
the pilot made fancy maneuvers. The good Samaritan squeezed
my hand and shot photos with my camera. (When I developed
them weeks later in California, the results were spectacular.)
day on the national park wildlife tour, the couple in front
of me on the school bus spotted animals everywhere. "Moose
at 10 o'clock," the husband called. He had a giant
pair of binoculars and a camera with a 3-foot zoom lens.
They wore matching trenchcoats. "How come you're so
good at this?" I asked. "Oh, hunting," she