Adam and I aren't the type of couple that chatters constantly with one another when one of us is on vacation. Opposite of that really. When one of us is traveling we tend to leave each other alone, letting the person have their space, checking in usually at the end of the night with a call or simply a good-night text.
Last night I went to bed without even a way to text Adam good-night.
Why you ask?
Because Monday morning Adam boarded a plane headed to a zinc mine above the Arctic Circle for a work trip. Because he'd be so far north and so isolated from civilization that before his trip he needed to buy Arctic gear. Not your standard snow clothes, let me tell you.
On Saturday Adam and I headed to the Army-Navy store where hundreds of thousands of miners, oil and gas workers and other hearty men and women have come before us to pick out Arctic gear.
As we wandered the racks a woman asked if we needed help. She directed us to the "bibs" and helped Adam pick out the bulkiest pair of overall/pants I've ever seen.
"Are you headed to the slope?" she asked.
"No. The Red Dog zinc mine. Headed for a work trip for a tour of their facility," Adam told her while attempting to wrangle his buckles.
"Scares the crap out of me," I told her, "The fact that the plane ride up there requires them to wear Arctic gear. First because the plane isn't heated, and two because you need to have Arctic rated gear on in case of a crash. How crazy is it that before you even board the plane you're thinking about the possibility of a crash?"
"Don't worry," she said, "I've never heard of that plane crashing before."
"OH… Thanks?" Cue nervous laughter.
When we got home Adam tried on his monstrosity and instantly looked like the Pillsbury Dough Boy. With all those thick clothes on he could barely bend his arms, let alone sit on the couch. Suddenly this seemed a lot less scary seeing as he looked more like the kid from Christmas Story than the boss headed out on a wild Alaskan adventure to check in on a client.
He can't call me to tell me what it's like to stay in a mining camp. He can't send me picture messages from the bush plane, or share shots of tundra. He doesn't think he'll be able to email, and I wont know if he gets snowed in unless he doesn't arrive on Wednesday at 7pm.
He's further north than anyone I've ever known, and further north than I'll probably ever go.
I'm excited for him, and I can't wait to see the pictures, hear the stories, watch the video, but surprisingly, the radio silence is defining.