Saturday, December 30, 2006
The one thing I can't stand about living here is the dryness. Who wants to wake up every morning with all of your mucus filled sensories dried up like last years bag of raisins? The only positive thing about living in a dry climate is that I left my frizz problem in the south! We have a humidifier running 24 hrs in the bedroom, but what can you do when the bits in the machine that are supposed to stay wet to add moisture into the air, dry up? I can't win! I will never complain about the humidity in the south ever again!
Tuesday, December 26, 2006
The week started nicely, thoughts of sugar plums dancing in my head and candy cane lane with gum drop houses. Despite the lack of routine that I am used to this time of season, Nathan and I had a great Christmas.
It all started on Wednesday when the whole town went without power for the entire day! We were lucky to have the diesel generator at Nathan's work and we all ended up over there (all for our own reasons, for Nathan it was the microwave so he could eat some pizza pops, and for me it was the working coffee maker). Eventually our power came back on and we were able to get back to some normalcy. It was so nice to see that everyone in town took a very laid back position about their lack of power, despite the fact that it was -24C outside.
Christmas came shortly after and it seemed like every time we would sit down to dinner Nathan would get a call out and we would have to put off eating for a bit. However it all worked out wonderfully and Nathan managed to surprise me with wonderful presents that I never even saw coming. I think he must have woken up in the middle of the night to put out some presents. Tallinn did pretty well also, he has enough rawhide to hide in every corner in the house now.
That's brings us up to today, Boxing Day. Instead of spending my day online shopping for sales, Nathan took me out on the snowmobile. We headed to the other side of the island and I saw the sun for the first time in a month. We do get the light where we live, however it never seems to rise over the hill enough, so for some light therapy Nathan took me over the hill on the snowmobile. It was beautiful, but only when we were stopped, as I was too busy being nerve wrecked when we were moving because he was driving. We made it home in one piece, but nearer to the end he got us stuck in some loose snow and it took us a while to dig it out and maneuver the machine around to get out. I guess karma wanted to take revenge on him for taking me on a crazy bump filled ride, because as we returned home there was an adorable little puppy all by her lonesome looking for a home! She must have been only a month old and extremely tiny. The look on Nathan's face when I brought her home! I brought her in and gave her a bath, but at this point I was still calling her him. Nathan kindly pointed out that it was a girl and not a boy. I have only had male dogs so I guess girl dogs can look a little like male dogs at that early age, needless to say at least one of us knew what was going on. I cleaned her up and fed her and wanted to hug her and kiss her and keep her forever and ever! However there was the matter of Nathan. We obviously couldn't keep her and I had to find her a home. We ended up bringing her over to a local woman we know and she was more then happy to take the freshly cleaned puppy (no dog gets a bath up here, so when they do they look like the million dollar dog, slightly more attractive to take in). I am glad I know she is a warm place right now, but I would have loved to take her south with us and give her to a family where she would be the only child that got truck loads of lovin'. She was pretty cute, but as far as Nathan's concerned I need to keep my hands out of the puppy jar!
Wednesday, December 20, 2006
Good Morning, and our top story this hour is that a land shark, or polar bear was seen sauntering into town. It was shot shortly after, just in front of the local grocery store, and all this before I even got out of bed. Do you know what it's like to feel like you might be causally eaten up whilst visiting the store where you get food to eat? Eat or be eaten? I'm sorry I thought I lived in sensible, proper, you don't have to worry about taking a walk in the middle of the day, Canada. Where the hell do I live again?
Don't get me wrong I love animals and would never mistreat the environment, I am the reuse, reduce, recycle, World Wild Life generation, but I also love my own skin! Rest in Peace Fluffy.
Friday, December 15, 2006
Sunday, December 10, 2006
I had my first ride on a snowmobile the other day. It was frightening to say the least, except for the parts where I was driving and Nathan was tucked behind me away from the controls. I do not have need for speed. Up in the North, the snowmobile is a normal part of everyday life. Most people don't have a car, and most people don't need a car, as a car can not be driven out onto the land to hunt.
I would like to share with you what a snowmobile is like mind, body and soul. It smells like burning gasoline, feels like frozen leather (except for the acceleration pedal, a lever your thumb presses, that part gets really hot), and most importantly it gets you from point A to point B, where the baguettes are fresher and less expensive. The sound of a snowmobile can best be described as a very loud and irritating lawn mower and at night time when the air is is clean and fresh, you can hear every single snowmobile in town and it sounds like the 401 has opened a lawnmower lane! And because the snowmobile is so flexibly moved, there are new paths formed, where there were no paths before. Our neighbours have a snowmobile route that was forged right next to their house, it gets pretty noisy. Block the path you say? Well it's just not that simple. Think of a snowmobile as a renegade machine that goes where it wants, when it wants! If thou path be blocked, it will forcefully be pathed a new, so don't bother pissing off the locals. Nathan and I are extremely lucky though, we managed to get a place off the beaten path and rarely have any one driving around our place, it stays pretty quiet.
This morning Nath lent one of the RCMP snowmobiles to help the search for some lost hunters. It's an incredible idea that would seem scary to anyone from the south. Some people get up one day and decide to go hunting, get dressed, hop on their snowmobiles or dog sleds and head out onto the land. Not just any land, a land with out pit stops or hotels, and more importantly a land without gas stations along the way. These hunters will go out for days at a time and survive in 100Km/h winds and -40C temperatures in only what they have on. I heard a story (this took place in the south) on the news the other day of a family getting lost in the wilderness after running out of gas. The husband tried to make it to a local town to save his family, but died along the way, after only one day of exposure(of probably pretty moderate temperatures). I also heard as story of a group of inuit hunters(from our town) getting trapped on a piece ice heading out to sea. They had all been soaked through after a wave had hit them and still they managed to stay alive for days until they were rescued. It's just incredible the difference in how exposure effects people. But I credit the people up north with a certain cold toughness.
In the Meantime, back to the individuals who were lost today, there is this group up here called the "Rangers", a bunch of local people who know the land very well, and they will travel out on their snow mobiles looking for the lost ones. Nathan came home at lunch and said that they were at least a day out, hopefully they will all make it hope safely. If I know one thing, its that there ain't no Hilton out there, and the sun is almost gone. It's life or death out there and that's not just a saying.
Saturday, December 09, 2006
Thursday, December 07, 2006
Wednesday, November 22, 2006
The sun made an appearance today, and I was delighted. I was starting to worry about my vitamin D (you can only get so much from milk). I was so happy to see it, I looked it square in the face (normally this would be a bad idea, however I felt this would be a great way to intensify the Vit. D manufacturing in my body). I know I am starting to sound like a weather girl, however I beg you to believe this is not all I obsess about! It was just nice to leave the house with my camera and actually take some nice peaceful pictures. The blood is flowing again, I feel so alive when I can press one little shutter button on a camera (a few million times!). There are only so many things you can take pictures of inside your house (I truly had Camera Cabin Fever)!
And here I am at 2 am, unable to sleep because I am feeling so motivated and excited about the images I took earlier today. I hope you like them.
Wednesday, November 15, 2006
Heres to our own personal Lassie ("is there something wrong boy?")
This is a picture of him the first day we got him.
Tuesday, November 14, 2006
Last night the house shook and the wind howled. When we woke up this morning, our house, including all the windows had been sprayed with snow. It's been a glorious snow storm all day and I have been waiting for this moment. Inside with fluffy slippers on is the way to be, however the dog still prefers to be outside. We let him in every so often to let him defrost, but not long after he wants out again. Does he forget how bad it is outside everytime he comes inside? Who knows.
This snow has been a long time coming. Now the snow mobile population can come to life. I have been looking forward to going out on a snow mobile for a while, the only thing is that I hear the traffic is very noisy.
Nathan and I have spent the day inside in our pajamas, putting a puzzle together (one that he says is impossible, but continues to work on it anyways). The puzzle is of some caribou strolling the arctic tundra.
I finally feel like I live in the arctic
Nathan participated along with the other RCMP members in the Remembrance day ceremonies. It was nicely put together, however it took place outside and it felt like minus 10. Poor Nathan had to take off his coat for pictures, he must have been freezing, but the camera loved him. I don't think Nathan ever thought when he joined the RCMP that he would be so popular. When he puts on his red serge, not only does he have to deal with his photographer wife, but everyone else who has a camera. I think it's extremely hilarious, and he is a pretty good sport about it.
The job for me at these events is to hold the police radio. If anyone speaks through that tiny little box, I am to flag down one of the guys like a mad woman. I have been lucky so far, I have not had a call on it yet, however I look like I know whats going on, walking around with the radio in my hand.
Thursday, November 09, 2006
It snowed last night, or should I say it powdered last night. I woke up to let the dog out and looked down and was a little put off. What is this? I have seen snow before (a lot of it actually), and this is like powder, it's not sticky or wet, not like what I am used to. I guess because it's soo cold and dry it's just like Jesus was baking and showered us with flour. I tell you though, it was a heck of a lot easier to shovel this fluffy dust then the ten ton pack snow that my dad used to make me shovel off of the driveway in the south!
Meanwhile lets meet my "part time" dog Tallinn. We call him part time because he is so hairy, that he prefers to be outside where it's cold vs. inside where the humans prefer to be because it's warm. And because he is so absolutely gorgeous and incredibly intelligent, he has made his humans build him a palace of his own outside so he can go out when he chooses. He just has to ring his own personal bell first to instruct us monkeys that he would like to be put out. Tallinn is an amazing creature, he much prefers to curl himself into a ball and sleep in the middle of the yard then sleep in the luxury dog house we built him. If any think that it's cruel to leave him in the cold, trust me we have to bribe him to stay inside. He really loves being outside and I am happy we can provide him with a huge yard and cold temperatures that his breed so desires.
Wednesday, November 08, 2006
So, just 5 months ago I moved from a rather large city, just south of Toronto to the frozen depths of the North, to a little place Called Nunavut ("Where is that?" asks the Canadian Tire Customer Service Rep). Well Nunavut is, believe it or not part of your Country called Canada. It is a place without shopping, a place without McDonalds, and most importantly a place lacking everything I am familiar with. And so starts this experiment. It's like moving to an entirely different country, even though it's still in Canada, and everyone speaks a different language. In fact they don't even use the alphabet, but something called syllabics. I can best describe this as bunch of curly jig jags and triangles and dots and frillies....Maybe you should just look it up on Wikpedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inuktitut_syllabics). My husband Nathan wears a name tag that says; Curly thing, triangle, Big C, very tiny curly thing....That translates to NITAN! Here ends our lesson on Syllabics.
Meanwhile, I have about 5 Months to catch up on with you and I really don't know where to start. Did I tell you there are polar bears here? Yep, there is an array of different, interesting wild life, but I tend to only get to see the dead bits. I have never encountered so many bones, teeth and other bio mater jewels just scattered about before. Up here where the dogs run wild and an afternoon stroll on the beach might entail tripping over walrus blubber. When I dash to the water to catch a glimpse of a beluga whale, I will seconds later be hit with the reality that up here it's just lunch! Nunavut has a stark beauty, but there is no messing around up here, if its got 4 legs and walks around, or swims, or hey, whatever isn't a person, you can eat it. So get used to it, cause there ain't no Tofu up here baby!
Well as the days are getting shorter, and more importantly colder, I find myself indoors more and hopefully I will have more time to update my incredible story of this poor southern shopaholic who finds herself isolated in the north. I am Jen, Jen of Nunavut.