Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Ketchikan, Part II

Click here for Part I.

Even the most seemingly mundane aspects of an area can be interesting when they're so different from what you're used to, like mushrooms ...

... and slugs!  We saw lots of these black ones, and they were big -- at least three inches long.  Couldn't get the kids to pick any of them up.

I walked right by this moss-covered tree without thinking of shooting it.  Then Danelle mentioned that she thought it looked cool, so I snapped one token photo.  I'm glad I did!

Did I mention I found the slugs interesting?  These two are especially gross, with their convincing imitation of dog poop and slime trail.

On to slightly more appealing subjects -- the totems at Potlatch Park.  This is where having a local guide really came in handy.  I had downloaded a Southeast Alaska travel app for my iPhone that recommended three different options for checking out totems in the Ketchikan area, and this place wasn't included.  And it was fantastic.

Lots of great authentic totems, and since our guide Tracy was a native herself we also got to hear interesting details and local folklore.

I've enjoyed the native art style of the Pacific Northwest ever since I read The Mystery at Devil's Paw as a young boy.  The totem pole on the cover always intrigued me.

I saved most of my Hardy Boys and Tom Swift books from my youth, but haven't been able to get Zak interested in any of them.  Same with my old sports cards, although he will occasionally read some of my old comic books.  Guess I'll just have to wait and see if I ever have a grandson. :)

Slaves were depicted very generically on the totems, as if to strip them of their identities.  I thought a monochrome shot even further reinforced their lack of individuality -- almost dehumanization.  "It puts the salmon in the basket ..."

As Danelle and Taryn went to explore the gift shop I had one of those moments that reminds me why I try to carry my camera so often.  We stumbled upon some beautiful foxgloves, a flower that doesn't grow wild in Colorado.

The striking petals, water droplets and faint line of spider silk running along the stalk made one of my last pictures from our trip one of my favorites!

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