I returned to the newsroom this morning after three weeks in pursuit of the Sourtoe Cocktail, the midnight sun, and fatherly wisdom. Waiting for me were two bundles of mail, a foot-tall stack of newspapers, 632 unread emails, 17 voicemails and (I could swear) the same pot of coffee that was reheating when I left.
What better environment for considering the real numbers of this magical journey:
The number of stars we saw while camping in the Arctic
The number of times we did laundry
Flat tires on the Dempster Highway in the Arctic
To replace one those tires shredded by the Dempster Highway
The number of digital photos I took
Total miles driven from Beaumont to the Arctic
How many crazy people had drunk the Sourtoe Cocktail since September 1973 just before I drank mine (#24,694) and my son Matt drank his (#24,695)
Oh, and one more number: 3
That's the number of credit-card companies who'll soon come looking for me.