Big Bears and A Manly Man

      Alaska. Big. Strong. Wild. Untamed. It’s funny, because those same adjectives pretty much describe the man who lured me to our country’s northern outpost. December '08, I met "J" at a resort in the Turks & Caicos during a much needed and well deserved vacation break.  He was handsome with piercing blue eyes. Tall and fit, in a manly-man rugby-player kind of way.  I’m sure I wasn’t the only woman around who took notice, but I was there to relax and soak up some fun. Period. He was as at the resort working; teaching folks how to dive. That was his winter job. He said he spent his summers in Alaska, running the Kenai River Salmon fishing. He Kenai River, Alaskatold me he was a hunter. (Didn't bother me. )Told me he loved to fish. (Didn't bother me.) Told me he lived a bare-minimum life with “no overhead”. (Didn’t bother me.)  Sure, not the norm, but hey, sounded like it worked out pretty well for him, so what was it to me, right?  

But, as fate would have it there was a substantial "spark" between us and well... what can I say? A good time was had by all.  Of course, this was a vacation tryst, so imagine my surprise when several weeks later, who should contact me but my scuba-diving friend from the islands?? Somehow we clicked.  He invited me to come back over to the islands. I went. We clicked. He flew to South Florida for a visit. We clicked. No, it was more than that. We had fun. We "connected." I was comfortable with him. Easy. Natural. He made my teeth sweat. So when he remarked that perhaps I should think about coming to Alaska in the Summer, I logged it away as a “possible” trip. Crazy as it all seemed, I thought, “why not?” One never knows where the heart will lead or how your life will unfold or with whom, right? I was starting to let down my walls and think maybe, just maybe, this could be something real.

Kenai Penninsula

     Okay, looking back, maybe I was a bit naive or too kooky or downright stupid to think  there could be some kind of future with a man who admittedly said “dating anyone would be tough with my lifestyle”, but you know how us women hear what we want to hear, and I suppose I'm no exception.

      A few months later, at the end of June, there I was floating down the amazing Kenai River in Alaska with probably the most handsome Alaskan Manly-Man on the river serving as my fishing guide, vacation host and lover all rolled into one.  Alaska. Hands down one of the most beautiful and breathtaking places I have ever visited! And let’s not even talk about how DELICIOUS freshly caught Salmon tastes - WOW!! Alaskan King Salmon (No wonder Bears love Salmon so much!)

 Could I have asked for a better trip? Fresh mountain air. Awe inspiring scenery. Mouth watering fresh Salmon and Trout. And  - bee-bopping around with a man who made me giddy and all reason fly out the window. A man who seemed to “get” me. WOW!!  So now I’m thinking, one never knows what life has in store. I was pretty darn happy. Things just felt right. And good. Different, but good.


     They say all good things must come to an end. My vacation was over, but I thought the next phase -with "J" - was perhaps just starting. Oh, how WRONG I WAS!!!

     Not sure exactly when it happened. Perhaps it was the moment I drove off -out of sight out of mind. Maybe it was the following week once the fog of romance faded. Or perhaps it was after he received the care package loaded with goodies I sent indicating, that yes, I REALLY DO CARE ABOUT YOU.  But let’s face it - do you ever REALLY know why someone does a 180 on you?  Why one moment they want you and the next they don’t?  Unless, of course, they tell you. By e-mail!!! 

"I met someone at the end of August that I can't stop thinking about. I don't have the strong desire to see you that I had once before.

I don't know if it is because of us or because of how I feel about her.  Anyway, I know this sucks.  I am just telling you my thoughts and have meant to get in touch with you.  
Take care of yourself.


That was the last time I heard from "J." Done. Just like that.  Yeah....ouch.

Until next time,


See More Alaska Photos


What did you think of this article?

  • No trackbacks exist for this post.

  • 3/9/2010 7:13 PM hotbones wrote:
    Reply to this
    1. 3/26/2010 5:40 PM marsha wrote:
      She's right al least the salmon was great and you had a great experience, he said it all low overhead, he wants no baggage there probably isn't even a special girl/
      Men need to grow up, and stop looking for only fun
      Reply to this
  • 3/12/2010 7:25 PM carylee kilgrow wrote:
    NEVER say never. Life isn't over yet. try again in a couple of months. YOU may be surprised. Love ya.
    Reply to this
  • 3/15/2010 9:18 AM Nikki wrote:
    Hi Julia! I love your blogs! You are such an awesome person! You remind me of myself in so many ways. We are both looking for Love and have yet to find it. Men and relationships in general are hard to figure out. Just when you think you may have found the person that is for you...then BAM...the guy ends up acting stupid or they tell you they have found someone else. Anyway, if any guy, cannot truly see and appreciate what a wonderful and beautiful lady you are. Then he does not deserve to be with you. The right guy will find his way to you or vice versa.
    Reply to this
  • 3/19/2010 8:22 PM Fara wrote:
    Hi Julia,

    Just discovered your blog and I love it. I work at CBS4 and I remember when you left and how it was so powerful to me because it was your choice. Anyway I love this blog...I have been there and I understand how painful that email must have been. Anyway I am about to start reading the rest of your blog so maybe it was for the best. Either way don't lose hope because you will find that guy out there..I know I did and I was burned a lot of times before that happened. It was funny because he actually found me. Anyway God Bless, Fara
    Reply to this
  • 3/23/2010 10:29 AM Theresa wrote:
    I love your blogs, I am single too so i know the single life but like you i am not about to giveup. Thanks for being brave for the rest of us.
    Reply to this
  • 4/2/2010 6:26 AM TexasTweet wrote:
    Just discovered your blog as a result of the TV spotlight on your two here in DFW. I too am single, have been reinventing myself the last couple of years and am starting to feel like I might be interested in meeting a special man for the first time in a LONG time. Your blog touched me. The email from J was stupefying!!! How weird is that? You two had something great going on and he just all of a sudden meets "Miss Right"?? Sounds to me like he is very immature and I bet a million dollars this new relationship doesn't last either. You had a good time and are SO much better off without him!! Can't wait to follow your blog now....
    Reply to this
  • 4/2/2010 9:24 PM Robert wrote:
    Before you can find a real husband you have to be ready to be a wife. Most American women today don't have a clue about being a wife...helps explain why so many men choose to remain single...much easier that putting up with a bunch of their daily unnecessary crap. There is much more that needs to be said but there's not enough space available here. Feel free to respond.
    Reply to this
    1. 4/10/2010 11:51 PM Ann wrote:
      Rob - It's a two way street.

      But I do agree with you - remaining single is a whole lot easier than putting up with a bunch of men's BS.

      An older woman once told me - strong women attract weak men. And she couldn't have said it any better.

      Reply to this
  • 4/3/2010 6:37 PM Omar wrote:
    Hello my name is Omar, and I just watched your interview and logged on to your blog. And I do agree with you that finding someone just is hard especially the area you live in. I just turned 50 years old, and all of my friends are either married, or they'll with someone. My friends tell me that I should go out more try the club scene. But I am not a club person. So they would seem the older I'm getting the hard it is to find a potential girlfriend and just to get to know the person to lead to something like marriage. And by the way I have never been married or have any children out of wedlock. I have came to a conclusion, that I will probably be by myself. But good journey, and I hope you will find your soul mate, because no one should be by themselves.
    Reply to this
  • 4/5/2010 9:50 AM aloiuette wrote:
    Take heart. I finally found my husband just before I turned 50. You are going about it the right way...just relax and enjoy yourself and make memories along the way...the most important thing is to have FUN! I found my husband on the internet...he contacted first I didn't think it would work, because he was still emailing I just told him goodbye and good luck...and walked away...that next am he was phoning me to tell me that he realized he couldn't live without me! We have been married for 4 years now and are very happy. By the way, I am Canadian, he is don't shorten the prospect list!
    Reply to this
  • 4/7/2010 12:15 AM Debbie wrote:
    I saw your story on TV today. I wish you the best. I've been married 2 times. If I had it to do over I would have waited for the Lord to send me who I should be with instead of messing my life up with a guy I met in a bar & the other in the classified. The first one was a drinker & the other one is controlling. I never liked working a public job so I didn't stay in the work force & he trys to control me with money. I regret every day the way my life has turned out. The only thing I really care about is my grandson. I wasn't in church much in my younger years but now I know that's whats the most important. I have 1 child & 1 grandson. Grandchildren are the best. Good Luck & God Bless you. Debbie
    Reply to this
  • 4/9/2010 8:49 PM Nia wrote:
    just say ~ next!

    you had fun and felt good. he was just being honest with you. it would have been worse to continue with an illusion that a noncommittal person would change. not excusing him, the email was crass, but would you have expected anything different from someone with such low overhead?

    hope you have loads of fun on this journey. always remember happiness is within you. waiting for your next installment
    Reply to this
  • 4/10/2010 2:32 PM Brenda wrote:
    You are correct, we as women, hear what we want to hear and always think we can change men. Just think about the adventure, it was all fun! However, keep that in mind with the adventures ahead. There is hope for us all!
    Reply to this
  • 4/11/2010 5:11 AM Lorna wrote:
    Hey girl I had to shout you up from all the way in St.Vincent and the Grenadines in the Caribbean!!You are gorgeous and its his lost. All the best in your endeavour
    Reply to this
  • 4/11/2010 7:58 AM Susan Mallery wrote:
    I love your positive attitude! "J" wasn't the one, but you're right - he is out there. I admire you for hitting the road to find him!

    Love exists, and it can last forever! That is one of my fundamental beliefs. There's a lot of cynicism in the world about divorce statistics, but I know a lot of people who have been married a long time... AND ARE HAPPY!

    Susan Mallery
    New York Times bestselling author
    Reply to this
  • 4/12/2010 6:40 AM katlacy wrote:
    Oh don't worry about the Dear John letter. The more you date the more of those you'll get, basically you just get used to it and you put it in a suitable perspective, almost everyone gets rejected at some point in the dating life and for most of us this happens over and over. You only need one - at a time, to work out, each rejection means one less person to waste time on in your search for the one and over time the rejections will affect you less and less, they'll just roll off your back. You'll feel hurt for about a month, the next thing you know you couldn't recognize the guy if he said "Hi" to you in the street. The good thing is out of all that you will find someone and you only need one. All the best, I love your project!
    Reply to this
  • 4/13/2010 1:38 AM bill99 santa monica wrote:
    Women have a saying, that they're not looking for Mr. Right, they're looking for Mr. Right Now. Well that's exactly what happened to you, in reverse, all J did was play you, that's all, you're not his first, you won't be his last, it doesn't mean you're a bad person, it's just what he does and it works for him. Next time, you fall for someone, if for a fraction of a second he seems too good to be true, guess what, all the other women who go up to alaska and eat his salmon and think he's McDreamy are all thinking the same thing. i wish you good luck in your endeavors my friend, just remember, love hurts.
    Reply to this
  • 4/16/2010 6:11 PM jack black wrote:
    G'Day Girls,
    Wish you all the best of luck in your adventure,
    Best Regards,
    Reply to this
  • 4/22/2010 2:53 PM Genesis1 wrote:
    As harsh as it came across, I will just say I am glad he had the courtesy of saying SOMETHING. Too often men just leave things open ended, no words or nothing. Hate using cliché words like closure, but even if you don't know why it happened at least you know something.
    Reply to this
  • 5/14/2010 1:15 PM Auset wrote:
    Men are hunters if you make it too easy for them there is no excitement in chasing you, so they get excited chasing the next woman. Do not give it up until you have a firm commitment of a relationship leading towards marriage. I know you think this archaic, but it works. I never had a problem getting men to propose or marry me.
    Reply to this
  • 5/16/2010 11:45 AM cusoon2in wrote:
    Hey, I am glad he wrote to you. Once somebody spent time with me and then just disappeared. No email/phone. Good luck on your journey. I hope you find someone.
    Reply to this
  • 7/26/2010 1:00 PM Steve wrote:
    Julia, Your story of the Manly-Man reminds me of a line I heard a long time ago about the chances of a woman meeting a man in Alaska:
    "The odds are good, but the goods are odd."
    I look forward to reading how your search proceeds. BTW, that was a beautiful salmon you caught.
    Reply to this
    1. 7/27/2010 2:25 PM Julia wrote:
      LOL - we're hearing the "odds are good" story in a number of places... Aspen, Montana, Alaska - hmmm, so something us gals have to take into account when searching in these regions???

      Thanks for the support and for the kudos on the Salmon! All was not last in Alaska - best fishing experience thus far!!!

      Any advice and tips for all the single ladies out there? Help us to understand you guys...
      Reply to this
  • 10/26/2010 6:51 AM sip trunks wrote:
    An educational piece of information, many thanks for sharing it on your site.
    Reply to this
  • 11/28/2010 10:58 AM Selina wrote:
    Hello Julia, thank you for sharing such a personal and possibly heartbreaking story. I think a lot of women can relate to your story and have wondered what they did wrong. I believe the guy became afraid when he realized you had sincere feelings for him. Julia I'm glad you haven't given up on finding love.
    Reply to this
  • 4/8/2011 6:01 AM anydiets wrote:
    And you have a cool site and blog!
    Reply to this
Leave a comment

Submitted comments are subject to moderation before being displayed.


 Email (will not be published)


Your comment is 0 characters limited to 3000 characters.