Downtown Seward on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022. (Ashlyn O'Hara/Peninsula Clarion)

Out of the Office: Something about Seward

There’s something magical about Seward. It’s more than the quaintness of a sleepy seaside town and more than the million-dollar views of Resurrection Bay. It’s a feeling — one that comes over me the minute my car starts the slow wind out of Moose Pass and drops into Bear Creek.

The day started with a slice of monkey bread and a cappuccino at Resurrect Art. A friend and I sat in a pew and talked quietly while rain pattered on the tall windows and coffee shop sounds and smells filled the air under the vaulted ceiling. I bought a postcard of a seal swimming under a sea kayaker because it reminded me of when my dad and I tandem kayaked in Resurrection Bay.

From there we wandered idly around town, visiting shops peddling small treasures, an underground thrift store and finally Sweet Darlings, where I ate a divine scoop of grapefruit gelato while watching the rain at the window bar. I surveyed what I’d accumulated over the course of the day, which included a plantable California poppy greeting card and a used copy of “Tinkers.”

As darkness fell over the historic facades of 4th Avenue, the orbs of the city street lights came on and were reflected in the puddles accumulating in the street. After a quick dinner at a restaurant named for mermaids, it was time to go home. The slow traverse home through the mountains and along the river was a time to reflect on how soothing the day had been.

Sometimes, when things get stressful or chaotic, I get a little peace of mind just knowing that Seward exists. It’s my corporeal happy place, an enclave capable of healing spiritual wounds. The first time I visited Seward was for a tour of Resurrection Bay. I’d been in Alaska less than a month and felt sappy when tears filled my eyes because of how beautiful the water and mountains were.

It is comforting to know that after more than two years Seward is capable of filling me with as much warmth and wonder as it did the first time I visited.

Reach reporter Ashlyn O’Hara at ashlyn.ohara@peninsulaclarion.com.

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