By: Dwayne Parton

So...What now?

“I’m driving to Prudhoe Bay, Alaska to see the Northern Lights.” That’s been my goal for some 50 days now. It’s the first leg of a journey that has never really had a solid plan, just a guideline. I’m hit a little bit with the “what now?” feeling. It’s finished, what do I do? What do I want to do?


I’ve been thinking about that since I started driving the Dalton Highway. After finishing, it hasn’t left my mind and now I’m at a friends house in Anchorage. I think I’ve got more friends in Alaska than I do in any state but OK and NC. Weird. It’s felt a bit like a reunion of sorts. But….what now?

Somewhere between Missoula, Bozeman, and Jackson Hole is where I want to spend the winter. I’m not sure how to spend the winter there though. I’m not sure how long “spending the winter” means. I just want to go back, I want to have a real winter. I’ve been looking for some temporary housing, and I know something will work out.

I’m not sure when I’ll leave Alaska either. I don’t want to rush it, and I know I’ll be back. I get all these adventure ideas. It would be cool to…. Oh I want to…. Maybe I can…. There are so many possibilities. I get ideas like crazy, and I need time to sift through them. Sometimes they are seriously irrational. Other times they are just ok. My point is, there are so many things to do and I have so many ideas it’s really hard to decipher what I really want? What I’m really supposed to do.


I know what don’t want. I don’t want to come home to a house and watch movies. I don’t want to have to mow a lawn. I don’t want to get into a routine that is “normal”. I don’t want to wait to LIVE.

I want to travel, work, take photos and write. I want to be free.

Winter is time for skiing and developing a skill set I’ve never really had a chance to develop. I’m beyond excited to get a chance to do that. Alaska is too cold and too expensive for me to want to stay the winter right now. The ideas are pouring in again… You could… Oh it would be cool too… Why not drive to…pata….Patagonia? That would be fun!


Breathe. First, I want to finish my book. At least my first one. I want to let these ideas settle, and then I want to leave again. So somewhere in Montana, Wyoming, or even Idaho I hope to stay. We’ll just have to wait and see what happens. Dang, Alaska is beautiful. And the Northern Lights, I can’t wait to tell you more about them and the drive to Prudhoe Bay.