Empty Channels

During the summer of 2019, over a million tourists left their cruise ships to walk down this Juneau dock. Some headed into one of the tourist tee-ship shops to snap up presents for their grandkids. Others lined up to buy a helicopter ride to the Juneau Icefield for a dog sled ride. The thriftiest footed up the Perseverance Trail. Those needing a drink shuffled into one of the rundown bars. 

   Last summer 5000 person cruise ships tied up at the steamship dock until their clients returned for the evening cruise up Lynn Canal to Skagway. We expect even more visitors this summer. Then Covid descended. After that there were no cruise ships, no helicopter tourist packages, no half day fishing charters. We saw more song birds in our yards, few tourists hunting perfume shops for rich, expensive bottles of scent. 

            Even though this high-end perfume store never opened this summer, high quality photographs that decorated the outside walls of its shop distracted attention away from scattered trash and locked shop doors. This winter, they might please the homeless as they unroll their sleeping bags and plant them in this wind-protected dimpled doorway.

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