In 2002 we were living in Fairbanks with our project 32 ft Westsail drydocked in the birch woods alongside the home my husband built for us. I'm a water baby, so as much as I loved our home, I couldn't wait to leave the Interior and take my family to the sea! We were looking for a smaller community - at the time, Fairbanks was around 88,000 folks strong. We had been homeschooling as we weren't happy with the shenanigans at the school. We were intrigued by all the photos we saw of Sitka and Haines and those two communities were at the top of our list. Both were along the waterfront, small, and yet had the services and infrastructure to support the activities of our young family. Smaller schools, beautiful ports, and close to nature - this was what we were looking for!
We dreamed as we scoured through real estate listings, looking for a home on the water! Then we came across a rustic cabin on Bootlegger's Cove, close to Jakolof Bay! It was cozy, with handmade shelves and a simple handbuilt kitchen, a loft for the kids, woods with berries behind, and a long dock with deep water moorage - right in front of the cabin! The listing had photos of incredible views of sunsets from the deck - a total dream! The photo above is of Bootlegger's Cove! This was it! We spoke with the owners, and my husband and brother-in-law made the long trek from Fairbanks to check it out! My husband's story is a great one, but I'll save that for him to tell! They visited the cabin, took a trip on the water taxi, and videotaped the entire walk-through. When they returned, we had a chance to view the tape (this was way before smartphones) and I was in love! Haines and Sitka took a backseat to this great locale. We loved that the cabin was only a 35-minute boat ride from Homer.
So the next question was, how do we support ourselves down there? We need a job, where could we work? And that is how we stumbled across Seldovia! Seldovia is 10 miles from Jakolof Bay dock and so that would be our community and our place to find work! We read every page on Seldovia.com and yearned to be a part of this close-knit community! We were excited about the idea of an affordable and available ice-free harbor for our sailboat trips to town, a beautiful K-12 school that would welcome our three kiddos that had a pool, basketball court, and an unbelievable shop (as my husband was a shop teacher) in such an amazing location, surrounded by the ocean, big trees and mountains! The fact that Seldovia is off the road system and that year-round there were only 400-500 people were huge bonuses to us! Next, the job hunt began - we had to figure out how to afford to make this move and live in this idyllic place! (to be continued)