Mark Gillett

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A Piece of My Heart

with 4 comments

I have never seen the moon as in I did in Yukon

I left Whitehorse two weeks back after spending three weeks following the Yukon Quest. Now I sit in a cafe working through images, planning for my next adventure, planning for the new business SuitCase Media & Productions. Well, not necessarily new but the growth of my business and who I actually am.

But this part of the world, North America, has really stolen a piece of my heart. The land, the skies and the people.. I fell in love with Alaska and the Yukon.

I have tried to put my finger on what it is as I have travelled to some pretty great places over the last 30 years. I have seen most of the world and many cultures… I have fallen in love with many places but on a different level. It’s almost like I was at home when following the Quest.

I love the way people live. Purchasing things that were necessary not as here in the malls where you can buy a gazillion things you don’t need. Clothes to fill your already full wardrobe, covers for your phone for which some people must have a separate wardrobe too, another pair of shoes for Wednesdays! All rubbish, all fashion but not necessary.

What I noticed in Alaska and Yukon was that everyone had a truck because they needed one. Needed it to carry the wood for the fire. A beautiful fire but a necessary one. Many have a skidoo for the same. They need it for their livelihood to to get about. Shops in the main street sell goods that are necessary and in Whitehorse the exceptions were goods for tourists which provides and income for the residents.

But more than this too there is a cosmopolitan feel to Whitehorse. People from around the world and all ages. A good youth culture and a feeling of modernity without brash flashiness. As I walked the streets during my last days it was beginning to warm up and I wanted to stay behind to witness Spring. To see the rivers break. I imagined getting back to Dawson to see the ice bridge break up and the hills come alive with the sun. And see the carnival atmosphere of the towns when Spring finally takes hold.

I did not stay, though, and am now in UK and off to Paris tomorrow. Then Barcelona on Tuesday. Both beautiful places that many people dream to visit so I am grateful for everything I have and everywhere I have been, and the piece of my heart I left in North America will still be there when I return. I hope that will be soon and I have many people I would like to meet up with again.

A final note is “good luck” to Lance,, Brent, Kristy and Hugh Neff in the Iditarod..  I don’t think I left anyone out.

Written by markgillett

March 4, 2012 at 6:22 pm

4 Responses

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  1. Hello, I live a 15 minute plane ride out of Willow. My hubs and I have made the trek to Whitehorse and beyond many times. I never tire of it. It is one awesome drive. Enjoy!

    Barbara Bolton

    March 4, 2012 at 7:55 pm

  2. If I remember correctly Jake B, Sonny L, Trent H also ran the Yukon Quest and they now are out on the Iditarod.

    Nancy M Steuer

    March 5, 2012 at 11:48 pm

  3. Thank you, Mark, for capturing our world beautifully and eloquently in word and image. Those of us with kennels now turn our view to the Iditarod (and for our family Quest veteran Sonny Lindner). Enjoy those European cities! London, Paris, Barcelona, Genoa, we loved them all. I can’t support my belief that Alaskans, unlike their lower 48 compatriots, have and use more passports hence the cosmopolitan feel of northern folks. Happy trails, Mark .

    Gina Tabachki

    March 6, 2012 at 7:57 pm

  4. Hi Mark, your message could have been written completely by myself. I know that feeling exactly. Too bad i missed you during the Iditarod but i know you spent a great time during the YQ with my dear friend Helen Hegener. I know you’ll be back !!! btw…you did a great job on the YQ and you sure made some great pics !!!

    Eric Vercammen

    April 10, 2012 at 10:32 am


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