Three young women walked towards us off the Basin Road trestle bridge, not together but spread out like they are trying not to draw artillery fire. Aki trots toward them, tail wagging, eyes intent. The first woman stares at me and I laugh and hope that she doesn’t notice.

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I laughed, not because of her designer “cat eyes” glasses or bronze colored body suit. I laugh because she is the first person we have met that hasn’t responded to Aki’s goofy charm.  We had just walked a loop up and down Perseverance Trail, passing many locals and cruise ship tourists. Every one, even the gruff guys and smart phone-toting teenagers at least smiled when we passed them.

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Maybe the three young women had just fought and needed time to cool down. Perhaps they had been forced by family to take an Alaska cruise when they would rather have spent the summer at the beach. What ever brought on their grumpy mood is sure to prevent them from noticing local beauties, like the lilac covered daisies lining the old mining road trail.

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