“How did you manage to dodge the crowd that follows you around?’ She looked at me with that shiny flash in her eyes and slowly removed her fashionable eyeglasses. She smiled and replied: “A few months in that governor’s office and you learn to become absent, or you lose your hair!” There was a moment of silence that she used to assess me from head to foot. Then she added: “I was becoming hysterical from all those questions. Am I really that odd? Am I that silly? ” “None of the above, Sarah. You are the proverbial breath of fresh air, or should I say the welcome artic breeze?’ She laughed and asked me: “Have you ever been to Alaska?” “Never had the chance and I doubt that anyone in my profession has ever had that opportunity. Spending a lifetime on research of pyrolitic graphite and exotic carbon crystals, does not leave time for visits to faraway locations. But, Sarah you have revived the level of curiosity for other environments that I owned some years back; it kept me alive. Tell me about it.”
Two hours later I regretted this last request. I learned about fishing salmon, Alaskan trout, and bagging large Red King sea crabs, halibut, sea urchins and the ever popular Resurrection Bay sockeye. She told me all about the various ways to detect the presence of Kodiak Brown bears, Grizzly, Mountain goats, Sitka Black tail deer, Caribou, moose and Roosevelt elk, avoiding traps, making snow shoes and looking for wild berries and those nourishing Alaskan hazelnuts. It was a lecture full of technicalities and references. So I changed the subject and asked about her duties as Governor. Before she answered, we had another beer and some of those Camembert cheese delights. She seemed to be eager to answer the question: “My friend” she started and the she caught herself. “Since spending time with John McCain I have picked up his favorite greeting, or that tiresome ‘my friends’.
Please forgive me.” “Sarah”, I replied, “You can count on my forgiveness, pardon and total absolution, plus my granting you two indulgencies of the second degree!” Again her laughter brought a note of cheerfulness to the somber corners of the lounge that I had located far away from the Congress Hall. She continued: “Briefly, I was concerned with a clear system to be able to keep the largest state in the Union in good shape. That is, I monitored by the hour all revenues and of course all expenditures and adhered to a rigid CBRF. Keeping those Prudhoe Bay and North Slope oil and gas fields under surveillance is a fulltime job, even if good old Parnell keeps adding overtime charges to his check. 750,000 barrels per day are no peanuts, my friend!”
After thirty minutes of detailed discussion of Budget features, enhanced by equations, investment profiles, non-oil unrestricted revenues, tax exposures, curves and numbers on a napkin, she asked for another beer. She looked at me and smiled. She said: “My friend, it is so nice to talk to someone who is not comparing you all the time to Obama, Hillary, Hitler, Britney or Oprah. It fills me with joy when there is real interest in my state.” I added: “Real interest also in your person, Sarah!” Big smile. Then I changed the subject: “Have you read about the Hadron Collider tests in Geneva?’ I thought that moving into high physics would eventually lead to dialogues of a more personal nature. She replied: “Of course, silly man! I have followed for years the work being done by CNRN in Nyon, in the outskirts of Geneva. It always fascinated me that a simple collision of protons might result in subatomic versions of collapsed entities.
Some of us theorized that the appearance of ‘black holes’ with enormous gravity pull, might suck-in other planets and perhaps even systems. In theory this event might refer to initial work on quarks and gluons.” She paused to take another sip of that lovely beer and bite with enthusiasm one of the little Camembert Cheese sandwiches. Then she continued: “You see, my friend, this experiment is most important since it could lead to the elusive Higgs Boson, a hypothetical particle that could give mass to all other particles. That would take us into the creation of matter in the Universe” “What is God’s role in this whole process?” I dared ask. “My friend, you should know the answer. It has been there in front of the collective noses of the human race since it rented its first cave!” Clever answer. I could not resist getting closer to her, grabbing by her sensuous shoulders and was ready to kiss her slightly open and expectant lips when I woke up!”