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Inside the Rainbow
Inside the Rainbow is a rendition of true events under the skies and in the skies of old Alaska long before it became the 49th state. It features the lives of Marie, a courageous country girl and her lifelong mate, Sandy who become teachers in the one room rural school of the North. They had just been married, graduated from college as they headed for their first job on a remote Aleutian island. Their employers, the Territory of Alaska, couldn&';t give them much accurate information about the job because none of them had ever been there. So, there were a lot of surprises in store.
Of course, there was no electricity, no running water, no inside plumbing, no access to any professional teaching support, no medical support, no church, no communication with the outside world accept with a mailboat that was supposed to visit once a month if Aleutian weather would permit. But worst of all, no village chief or law authority.
But their students were great. They loved their teachers were cooperative and eager to learn. All 8 grades were jammed into one crowded room with the teacher&';s quarters attached next to it.
The first three days of school went well, but then an event happened that changed everything. There was a murder. Since the teachers were the only representatives of the territory of Alaska present on the island, Sandy became in charge of the event. Normally the only territorial business that came into the island was the responsibility of the teacher. It was usually just trivial paperwork, never before was there a murder to deal with. The only law enforcement was the commissioner at Unga Island, 160 miles away. She was notified by a makeshift radio contact from one fishing boat to another and the last fishing boat came into the Unga tavern to tell of the murder. She responded that her stomach was not up to it and that the teacher would have to take care of it. She told Sandy to have a 6-man inquest, which is asking 6 people to view the evidence and report back to him. They all said they thought that the man killed his wife and then committed suicide. He wrote that all down, made out the death certificates, and mailed them to Juneau, the Alaska capital. That was it! Sandy was asked to conduct the double funeral. That was the end of the first week.
Randy Getz was an air force pilot as well as a northwest airlines pilot before he became a tourist guide at the Boeing flight museum. He said &l";I was in the middle of reading Donald Rumsfeld&';s book &l";KNOWN AND UNKNOWN&r"; when my wife gave me a copy of &l";INSIDE THE RAINBOW&r";. I thought I would leaf through it quickly then finish Rumsfeld&';s book, but I could not put down Sandy&';s book. That became the reason I invited Sandy to be one of the speakers at the Alaska bush pilot program, which I was in charge at the flight museum. Sandy&';s Alaska Bush Pilot presentation was the highlight of the day.&r";
Sandy&';s book represents many of Alaska&';s well-known adventures, besides the one room wilderness school teaching, it includes dog team travel, trapping, hunting Alaska game, commercial salmon fishing, homesteading, building a wilderness log cabin, involved in searching for down aircraft, reliving the Klondike gold rush trail, as well as using the Alaska wilderness as a right of passage to manhood. Even though it uses stories of the past, it has implications about the present we live in.
He states in the FORWARD, that any writer who has aspirations that his efforts might become lasting might include how issues and conflicts of that time of which he writes relate to the present time. Therefore, his hope will be that his book &l";INSIDE THE RAINBOW&r"; might become a work set apart.
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