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Falling into a New Chapter

Fall Tundra in Nome. Photo: Margaret DeMaioribus; KNOM.

As the months dwindle onwards, it’s become clear that summer doesn’t last forever. Whether it’s the mornings lost to darkness, or the tundra’s rusted exterior, fall’s presence is hard to ignore. Harder yet to ignore is the lack of crunchy leaves to stomp (what a lower 48 luxury!).

Leafless, the strangest part of the coming season is that, for the first time, I’m not in school anymore. For 16 years, fall has been marked by back-to-school sales (and sometimes working the cash register during those sales). Without school, this fall has become a time for critical reflection. I’m asking myself the hard questions: “who am I outside of academia?”

Academia Tyler was an over-committed, stressed-out, social butterfly who loved his job and barely survived his major. Between 18 credits of class, working 20 hours a week, and managing a social life, there was hardly time to reconsider my choices. Now, my old job is a full-time job. And according to the piece of paper I got in the mail, I’m no longer a student.

So… what am I now?

The answer to that question changes a lot. I find out more about myself literally every day. But at the moment, I’m someone who loves their job and the place they live. Who is learning to enjoy working out and figuring out situations he’s not familiar with. And occasionally, I’m someone who has an answer to that question.

If you’re interested in hearing what the rest of the volunteers have to say about fall, the lack of school, and what might possibly be the most produced sign-off we’ve had, listen to the audio portion of the blog at the top of the page!


  1. Tina on September 25, 2016 at 5:27 pm

    Today was the first day in a very long time the temperature didn’t surpass 90. I love fall, but it seems so brief compared to winter. I will work hard not to complain about the winters in Virginia, knowing they don’t hold a candle to winters in Alaska.. Do you guys have a sun lamp?

    • Davis Hovey on September 26, 2016 at 8:44 am

      Tina, you’re right all weather back home is so much different than weather up here. Fall is one of my favorite seasons as well, but 90 degrees in fall still seems too hot. We have multiple sun lamps and I’ll be taking regular D3 supplements haha. Thanks for listening and commenting on these!