HER OWN THRED HERE...WELCOME! feralfae, aka iloilo buchanan


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Social climber
Topic Author's Original Post - Jan 3, 2013 - 02:20pm PT
hey there say, guys... and:
WELCOME to feralfae! you got your own thread here now-- sometimes your wonderful sharing is not seen by everyone, since not everyone knew doug here--and your posts and shares are so VALUABLE!

"CARRY ON" i liked how you said that, :)
you SURE had a HARD climb since that 2008 accident, you, doug, the cancer, and the recent SPINE injury manesfesting, whewwwwwww

tencity that doug would be proud of--you are so welcomed here,
and as you carry on, we will be here to cheer you onward, :

man oh man... THIS was some last few years, :O

This is feralfae's share from the
doug buchanan on the other side, thread:

Jan 3, 2013 - 07:04am PT
Thank you everyone for the get well wishes and the great notes and cards! Neebee, I know you were the brains behind this, so special thanks to you for everything. Yes, it was emergency spine surgery of a highly amusing nature.
Since many of you asked, here's the short version of the story...

Careening along the frozen expanse of the Johansen Expressway in Fairbanks, returning to HQ from last-minute shopping prior to Christmas, the rental car I was driving was struck in the driver's door by a pickup. I was the driver on the inside of the collapsed metal. After the side airbag exploded and knocked me out, and I came to, I realized that I could not move anything except my head. December 2008.

Soon, lights and noise surrounded me, as paramedics and fire people figured out how to pry off the driver's door, slip a board under my body, and slowly inch my frame on to the board, while stabilizing my head. Of course it was -23F, so we did not need to worry about conserving the A/C in any of the vehicles. Our Godson Jason, up from Montana, was in the vehicle with me, but I heroically managed to absorb most of the shock of the impact, so he was unscathed in the collision. But terribly shaken, as he held on to me while I was out and after when I went into convulsions from the airbag blow.

Doug met us at Fairbanks Memorial, where x-rays revealed that I had not broken my neck, but that I had a bit of damage to the lower spine. I was instructed to have it checked out when I got back to Montana. The rental vehicle was entirely wrecked, and was given a decent retirement to the scrap yard. I was given a brace to reduce the pain in my cracked ribs. We scrambled into the trusty Jeep and headed home to HQ.

We had a grand and glorious big bottle party, followed by more glorious parties around the neighborhood. My rib wrap was working to hold things together. I showed the Ice Tower show for everyone.

Later in December, after a delicious dinner with our friends the Foots (Feets) Doug and I went home to HQ, climbed into our bed, and snuggled up for a nice rest. A few hours later, Doug woke up in severe pain, and a few hours after that, he was at Fairbanks Memorial Hospital, where he had emergency surgery and the diagnosis of cancer.

I put Jason on a plane home a few days later, and settled in to care for Doug, completely setting aside the "go see your spine doc when you get home" message, because here we had lots worse and immediate stuff to consider.

Fast forward through three years of chemo, doctors, surgeries, special diets, more surgeries, more chemo, lots of hope and desperation there at the last, and Doug writing out detailed instructions, leaving lots of notes, and then managing to escape his body that was no longer functioning. I held him in my arms as he left.

By that time, I was wearing a back brace full time, taking lots of pain medications, and still able to carry on. I made it through the Fairbanks Celebration in May, and was able to hang on for a couple of significant meetings arranged earlier by Doug. I headed home to Montana, driving down the AlCan, where the flooding and washed out roads impeded progress.

In WhItehorse, by now barely able to walk from the pain, I was rescued by a sister climber, who got me back to Fairbanks and on to a flight for Montana.

Arriving home, I remarked to a friend that I could finally collapse and rest. I was eating pain pills with remarkable appetite. Two weeks later, after an emergency room diagnosis of coda equina, I am rushed to emergency spine surgery, from which I am recovering with remarkable success. I plan to be back in the mountains before too long. I had a super spine surgeon, who is a runner and sometimes climber, and the best physical therapy team in the business—all people who live here so they can play in the mountains.

That's it. That's it. The whole story. I'll be in Fairbanks in the spring or early summer, as soon as these PT guys release me to go play and carry stuff. I have a design for helium balloons for carrying my pack into Rainbow. So, I'll be sure to post here before I head up to Fairbanks. For those of you in Wyoming, I will be down in the Winds later as well, hanging on the North Fork with occasional trips in to Lander. If you are in the area, let me know. You can reach me at ilo(AT)iloilojones(dot)com, just put Wyoming or Winds in the subject line.

So, okay, that's the story and update. Other news and links are available through MeansOfInquiry(dot)org, where I will post occasionally, or on the related sites you can find through that one.

Thank you all very much for your kindness, concern, and great notes. I am still sorting stuff here, and have a lot of Doug's stories that he never got uploaded, which I hope to get entered into the sites in the next few years as things settle into a new path and a new life. Thank you all very much for your love, caring, and wonderful fellowship.
Carry on.
feralfae, aka iloilo

thank you feralfae for getting in touch with all these
wonderful folks that sent you the messages...

god bless!!!

and YES!!! LET US KNOW about all your alaska treks, as well!!!!

Social climber
Topic Author's Reply - Jan 3, 2013 - 02:34pm PT
hey there say, all...

we NEED the link to the doug buchanan on the other side:


say, feralfae... wow, i just read this again and i cried those 'tears of relief' and a few sad ones and some 'happy tears', :)

may god's grace help you on your new trail, this year...
may the ground be stable and solid and may you fulfill doug's wishes,
and have good special play time in the mountains with all your
beloved friends!

happy new though different, but soon to be speical, NEW YEAR!

Big Wall climber
Terrapin Station
Jan 3, 2013 - 02:38pm PT
Welcome feralfae!!

Doug was a unique character here, and still missed.

Please pitch in with some good ol' Alaska news from time to time!
(I'm a Venetie, Kotzebue, Nome, Bethel, Anchorage, Eagle River boy myself.)
Toker Villain

Big Wall climber
Toquerville, Utah
Jan 3, 2013 - 02:42pm PT
Hi felafel,
never did get to meet Doug.

Welcome to the scrum.
Jim Brennan

Trad climber
Vancouver Canada
Jan 3, 2013 - 02:47pm PT

Boulder climber
Jan 3, 2013 - 10:30pm PT
Hey, thank you all!
My own thread! Wow! Now, in the interest of maintaining a level of authentic entertainment, I shall begin to share some of my, ahem, adventures, preferably not of a medical nature.

Thank you all. I will endeavor to carry the banner and to provide a small portion of the writing my most Worthy Husband and Partner could do.

Thank you!
Carry on!
Mighty Hiker

Vancouver, B.C.
Jan 3, 2013 - 10:38pm PT
Dare I say that we welcome you robustly?

Trad climber
Living Outside the Statist Quo
Jan 3, 2013 - 11:26pm PT
Aloha Farelfae,
Glad to have you here at our virtual campfire.


Big Wall climber
Terrapin Station
Jan 4, 2013 - 05:40am PT
Wee hours bump for feralfae, and a PM I just got.

It's a funny world sometimes.....

Trad climber
Jan 4, 2013 - 05:44am PT
Welcome feralfae!

What is a feralfae? Sounds scary!
mouse from merced

Trad climber
The finger of fate, my friends, is fickle.
Jan 4, 2013 - 08:21am PT
It's a free for all here, sister.

But it's also a pull-togther thing, kinda like sled dogs.

Shout out for Alaskans!


Social climber
Topic Author's Reply - Jan 4, 2013 - 01:01pm PT
hey there say,feralfae!

three cheers, the campfire here
will be all the richer... adventures make it brighter, for sure!

as to this quote--wonderful!!:

I will endeavor to carry the banner and to provide a small portion of the writing my most Worthy Husband and Partner could do.


Boulder climber
Jan 4, 2013 - 04:04pm PT
A Feral Fae Is a wild fairy, previously sort of tamed, but then, having considered her options, she decided to go back to being wild, thus feral, which means she left a university position and scooted out to Montana to play in the mountains pretty much full time. And became much more of a self-responsible anarchist, and learned more about living free.

Not scary, but certainly not scared, either. :)

Thank you all for the welcome. I will consider this the place where I can post about wild adventures, especially those where we are not sure if we survived or not, although I try to avoid those most of the time. And I may occasionally rag the government, which certainly needs as much ragging as we are able to provide through our laughter at the stupidity of war and burdensome taxation, not to mention all the entertaining encroachments on free climbers.

As I may be traveling a bit (I am also an archaeologist/anthropologist) I hope to have some good excuses to climb in various places as I explore Rock Art and remote habitation sites. I'll keep my usual notes.
Carry on!
Climb On!

Social climber
Jan 4, 2013 - 05:59pm PT
Welcome to the mix, feralfae, that was quite a story! Seems like you have gone through some crazy stuff, and come out the other side!


Trad climber
Las Vegas, NV.
Jan 4, 2013 - 06:08pm PT
Welcome Feralfae!

I am looking forward to hearing of your adventures - your style of writing is very honest and warm.

I have an interest in archeology, would love to see some pictures of sites that you have visited if you care to share.

Be well!

Boulder climber
Jan 8, 2013 - 02:36pm PT
Thank you for all the kind and loving comments.

Most of my past archaeological files are archived at Northwestern University, University of Illinois, Illinois museums, or University of Tennessee. Some of my files are at the Center for American archaeology at Kampsville, Illinois. I was with the Center for American Archaeology at Northwestern, but also worked in a few foreign spots. I archived my records when Doug and I were packing and sorting to move to Southeast Alaska.

So now, I am figuring out where I will wander next. Maybe east of Greece, not sure. Maybe more in Egypt. Maybe more in the Highlands and Orkney Islands. Maybe Mongolia. I am pondering these options as I heal and grow stronger, and begin to figure out life without Doug. :) There is also Chile, with its marvelous iconography, which is worth studying. And if I want to stay close to Montana, there is archaeology here and in Wyoming, as well as in the Dakotas.

I have friends in the field all over the world, but for now, I am unpacking my studio, planning to get back to art-making in the next year or so, and not sure what life is going to hand me in the way of more miracles and adventures, so taking it slow right now until I finish healing on lots of levels.

So, sorry I don't have a lot of files and images, but we were sorting stuff and paring down the number of ConEx containers we would need to move from here to there. Whew!

Life is glorious, interesting, an adventure, and hands us marvelous opportunities and challenges. I am working on staying open to all the options the Universe presents, while dreaming my own big dreams and the dreams Doug left me as well.

Thank you all, I and I shall post some images and commentary here as I get things more sorted out, including myself. :)
Carry on,


Big Wall climber
Terrapin Station
Jan 8, 2013 - 02:46pm PT
Thank you all for the welcome. I will consider this the place where I can post about wild adventures, especially those where we are not sure if we survived or not, although I try to avoid those most of the time.

Uh, yeah! This is the place.

Archaeology? Anthropology? You need to go to New Mexico.

Gives me an excuse to bump your thread. Here's a link to one of the most undisturbed/unvisited sites I've been to. My trip report with my son:
mouse from merced

Trad climber
The finger of fate, my friends, is fickle.
Jan 8, 2013 - 02:58pm PT
Hellohello, Iloilo!
Credit: mouse from merced
Welcome to the world's cheesiest Taco!

Boy, neebee, you got some neat-o pals!

Boulder climber
Feb 17, 2013 - 06:25pm PT
Okay, it has been more than a year now since Doug escaped from the insatiable demands of government bureaucrats and from his non-functioning body. As far as I know, he is doing fine. I still find the occasional note. He hid them all around before he left. Best yet, I find things he hid around our forest for me, which is totally cool.

The great report of the day is that between snow sprinkles, I made it across our ersatz balance beam today, legs trembling, but strong enough to balance me across a slow, twenty-feet walk on the log across the gully, which happened to be free of ice and snow today. This is huge. I could not walk at all 7 months ago. I could not feel my legs, even. My goal, of course, is to run across the balance log, then start climbing the trees across the gully as my legs get stronger again. Whoo hoo! I have not yet begun to use Doug's chinning bar.

Now then, about these insane government weapons laws:
Depriving any sane and peaceful woman of the right to self-defense is totally repugnant to the human rights of everyone. I mean, isn't it enough to tax us of half our grain and cattle and sheep? Does the king not have enough to eat? Is his house without heat? Still, would that excuse armed robbery?

Has he no clothes? Oh, wait, that was the other guy, that emperor who took half my grain and cattle and sheep, too, several years back, and was too stupid to put on clothing because someone bamboozled him. (All right, he just had an impossibly horrid wardrobe, but I consider that a distinction without a difference.)

So, now we have this guy who thinks we will all turn in our spears and swords? I'm not even willing to part with my atlatl. Or my blowpipe from Brazil. So, on the disarmament thing, no, thank you, I think not. Thank you all the same.

If this king. emperor, whatever he calls himself, if he needs more money, he needs to learn to ask nicely, instead of all this armed robbery and trying to take away my weapons. How many jets can he fly at once, for goodness sakes? How many limos does he need? How many chefs?

And how come they want to take my sword and bow, but they have bombs? I think that is backwards, because I never threaten or attack or kidnap or imprison or enslave them. But they do that to other humans. Peaceful ones. I actually bake cookies for people. Who in government is that kind?

Sheesh, I am keeping all my blades and bows, and especially the atlatl. (If you need to send a line across a chasm, by the way, a good old bamboo wand and atlatl made from another wand will work very well. I am sure several of you have constructed an atlatl and thrown a line on the spot many times.)

By the way, if you think the park rangers would not rescue you without a bribe (and I am kindly discounting their highly amusing incompetence) do you think paying for the prospect of their rescue "skills" will cause them to be any more proficient? Or is your not paying the initial bribe just an excuse for them to collect more bribes from you if you want to stay out of jail after not paying the initial bribe? I am trying to figure this out.

Time to go get stronger. I have mountains to visit soon.

Hey, neebee!!!


Trad climber
Living Outside the Statist Quo
Feb 17, 2013 - 07:05pm PT
Viva la Liberte!

Great to hear and Aloha. This week in my AP government the topic is the bureaucracy. Wholly...can you say leviathan? While it was locke's attempt to limit the State, he failed and Hobbes showed the power lovers their dream of a social contract.

Wonderful log crossing!

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