Marcelle arrived shortly before 7:30 pm and I was on my way to Alayuk Adventures!
My luggage loaded into the trunk, we get into the warm car and drive on the South Alaska Highway. Two strangers meeting for the first time – despite a few exchanges of emails, we knew nothing about each other. Yet we will live and work together for the next seven months. I was overwhelmed with a ton of questions, but for the sake of not overwhelming my new boss, I decided to restrain myself. We’d have time to get to know each other. But we must fill in the blanks created by the 40-minute journey to 123 Triple Cross Road, head office and residence of Alayuk Adventures. As kilometres passed, the conversation became more and more relaxed. I was captivated by the landscapes around me, impatient to discover Yukon more deeply, curious also to learn how Marcelle operates and very eager to “tame” the team.
Before heading down the South Klondike Highway, Marcelle stopped at a mailbox, after rolling a quarter of an hour from the airport, to retrieve her mail. A mail box! The letter carrier doesn’t go to her house… It was at this precise moment that it hit me: I was going to live in the middle of nowhere. That is to say the real middle of nowhere, where there wasn’t even a bakery! No grocery store for miles around. The only place to refuel is Whitehorse! And I understood quite quickly that, from this fortunate situation in the heart of nature, it would be necessary to pay careful attention to the management of daily life. The expeditions into town must be well laid out, between grocery, laundry and the remaining administrative hoops for a Frenchie freshly landed on Canadian soil.
The journey was nearing its end when we turned onto Annie Lake Road, a long track, half asphalt, half gravel, but as wide as other roads I know or have imagined in North America. Here and there, appear other trails that deviate from the main road, chalets (here called cabins), and squirrels (the only « wild » animal seen so far). We eventually took one of these trails finally reaching Triple Cross Road. At the end of the road was the ranch. At the door, I met Gilles, Marcelle’s companion, who greeted and welcomed me.
It was 8:49 p.m., Yukon time (5:49 a.m. on Monday, September 19, in France), when I at last reassured my relatives. I was officially awake for 24 hours (and therefore slightly tired). I didn’t have my Working Holiday Visa in my passport (although I wasn’t worried about getting it the next day), and I couldn’t meet the dogs yet, given the late hour and the rain. But I was happy to have arrived in Yukon, living my dream.
I stacked my suitcases in « my » room, which will be the closest to a « home » for the next few months, and I fell asleep, dreaming about all these beautiful things that the next days promised.