I have an obsession with remote locations. It’s strange but true. I spend copious quantities of time researching the Northwest Territories of Canada and wondering what it would be like to live in Barrow, Alaska. Brett and I get excited over information about the research stations in Antarctica. I am moderately obsessed with Lapland in Scandinavia, and desperately want to visit.
Who wouldn't want to make this metropolis home?
I am not an adventurist, and have no desire to engage in extreme survivalist activities, but I am enthralled by daily life in remote areas, especially cold remote areas. I am not talking about leaving society and shacking up in an abandoned cabin in the woods. No, I’m talking about the fully functioning towns that make these harsh climates home. Over 4,000 people live in Barrow and honestly, that’s about as remote as it gets for a “city” in the U.S. How do 4,000 people live where the warmest month of the year averages 46 degrees?
I have no idea why I’m so fascinated, but it’s a constant obsession. I think it would be thoroughly exciting to somehow do something that would let us live somewhere more remote. Maybe this obsession is a reaction to living in a megalopolis, but I have always been fascinated with such places. However, I think I romanticize them. I mean, I routinely fantasize about living a life like Joel Fleishman in Northern Exposure. Unfortunately, that’s T.V. and real life is never quite as “colorful.” However, I have spent time in remote places. In fact, when Brett and I started dating, he lived in a town with fewer than 100 people in it. I enjoyed it. Would I enjoy it forever? Who knows.
When I first moved to Montana, it scared me a bit. I mean, at night, it was just so very dark. And when you traveled the interstate, you could go many many miles without any where to stop and very few other cars. It was intimidating for a city girl. But something changed in me, and I began to feel less threatened by daunting landscapes, and now I’m more threatened by massive populations. It’s amazing how little patience I have for cities now. I love the convenience of a city and the fact that everything you want is right there, but a city life is no longer my dream. I used to imagine having a well appointed high rise condo, or a row house within walking distance to cafes and shops. Now, when I search for real estate, I’m more concerned about acreage and “shop” space for Brett’s tools.
All this talk about cold makes me colder than I already am. It’s a mere 3 degrees in Chicago today, and the wind chill will render you speechless, or possibly dead. Nevertheless, I am invigorated by the cold.