Treena's Travels

This blog was set up to journal my experience of living in Nunavut and keep friends and family up to date on these happenings. It's a wonderful place, this hideaway in the north, and I'm loving my time here. An unforgettable place with unforgettable people. I'm lucky to be here.

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Location: Baker Lake, Nunavut, Canada

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Temp: -31
Windchill: -41

'Hey, I heard you got a new hat. Nice!' That's how you know it's a small town; when you run into someone and that's how they open the conversation. Little things get noticed in a little town. Too funny. But I do have a very nice new hat thanks to Bertha, the teacher I work with. It even has my name on it in syllabics.

Well, it's been a cold week. We woke up to -48 winchill this morning and, at 7:30 this morning, I was standing outside waiting for Oliver to do his business when I looked up and saw the most beautiful Northern Lights. At 7:30 IN THE MORNING! That was pretty crazy. It is always dark in the morning now before work, but I have never in my life seen Northern Lights in the morning.

As for what else is new up here, this weekend will bring the annual Christmas Craft Sale. Everyone in town really looks forward to it and a lot of the local artists come out with prints, wall hangings, and various other wares. This year, I'm tossing my hat into the ring with some necklaces that I made. I'm hoping they appeal to the young girls in the community because there isn't really anything for them fashion-wise to buy here. We'll see. If they don't go, then I've got a whole lot of new necklaces to add to my collection! A girl just can't lose.

Speaking of Christmas, the countdown begins what with tomorrow being December 1st. The countdown to Christmas holidays that is. We finish school on December 15th and I am AB bound on the 16th. It's going to be nice. Really nice. Everyone seems to be getting the itch for the break. The isolation factor is setting in so it will be refreshing to have a change of scenery, do some shopping, get a haircut (woohoo!!), hopefully go skiing, see some friends, and kick back. Really looking forward to it.

Here are a few pictures:

The view of the lake at sunset.

And here are some other interesting pictures that have nothing to do with anything except they are cool.
(photos courtesy of Brad Mainse)

Seal peaking through an ice hole.

Arctic Fox


Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Temp: -14
Windchill: -26

So what has been new this past week? Well, it's actually been kind of interesting. After coming into contact with one of the little ones at school who has Scabies, I ended up having to be treated for it as a precaution. Nice. So, bedding was washed, clothing was washed, parkas and boot liners were frozen to kill any little friends that may have hopped on for the ride, and medicated lotion was applied from head to toe. Excellent.... Ahh well. You work on the front lines, ya gotta expect a little inconvenience I guess. :-)

And as for today? WOOO HOOOO.... It's a Storm Day!!! Oh I am one happy girl! Today is the first storm day of the season. Actually, it's the first 1/2 storm day; we went to school in the morning even though the weather was iffy. But, the weather, combined with lack of attendance, has forced a closure. In a school of 270ish students, we only had 87 kids this morning because most are out with a bad flu/cold that is going around. Let me tell ya, the Health Centre is one busy place trying to look after them all. The Day Care and the arena are closed too with hopes of stopping the spread.

Here's a picture of looking out my window. Check out the SUV in the road. Then check it out as it's no longer on the road but 4x4ing unintentionally (in the background - not the close one). Crazy!

So, what am I going to do with my day? Well, I'm going to get caught up on some crafty stuff. Maybe some baking. A bit of laundry. Just enjoy my 'free' day. Yup... Good times.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Temp: -18
Windchill: -34

My view this afternoon

Well, it's Sunday afternoon and I just got back from Ivan and Edna's where everyone gathered for a brunch feast. Yummy! Good for the taste buds, not good for the waistline. Ahh well. Man, that is one thing I'm sure grateful for up here; everyone sure can cook!

The weather yesterday was nice - crisp, but nice - but last night it turned blustery and today we had a windy, chilly day. Finally!! This weather makes me feel very cozy and want to curl up on the couch and just enjoy a cup of tea. And it's been a long time coming. I can't believe that it took us until November 19th to have a blizzard and it wasn't even an impressive one!

So here we are, only four weeks from Christmas holidays and things are buzzing along like you wouldn't believe. We've got the Christmas concert coming up at school to prepare for; we're doing two selections - Rockin' around the Christmas Tree and Silent Night (which will be signed). It will be a lot of work but will be pretty darn cute. Can't wait. It sure brings back the memories of my school and community Christmas concerts.

Speaking of Christmas, I decorated for Christmas this past weekend. As I write this I'm listening to The Bare Naked Ladies Christmas album and I am feeling rather festive! The local store is fully decorated for the holidays and Christmas music is blaring from the speakers. And yesterday I had finally experienced something that I've been curious about since moving here. Bingo at the Northern. Once a week there is bingo held at the local grocery store. Each time you spend money at the Northern they give you bingo tickets to play on bingo night. And when it's time for bingo, look out! People sit all over the store and listen for the numbers to be called over the PA system. It's a pretty unique experience. The store is packed with people, the tills are clogged up with players busily marking their cards the counters (and don't even THINK of trying to pay for your purchase while numbers are being called!), and the isles are, well, dangerous to maneuver through. And if you don't want dirty looks, you had best keep your voice down so that winning numbers aren't missed. Definitely a unique experience.

Some Christmas Decorations

Now this photo is going to be gross once I explain what it is, but, I'm warped and thought it was funny so had to share. This is Oliver's contribution to art in Baker Lake. He is, apparently, skilled in the art of Inukshuk making. This is a remnant of his 'relief' area; the snow blew away all the snow surrounding this little contribution and, voila! We were left with an Inukshuk. Too funny. And yes, I have wayyy too much time on my hands! :-)

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Temp: -18 (windchill -29)

Well, I've been tardy in keeping up in my blog as my good friend Karen pointed out to me, so here I am at 12:40 a.m. Sat morning writing this update (insert guilt trip here) :-) Actually, I can't seem to fall asleep yet. Tania and I went over to my friend Pam the-dental-hygenist's house (not sure if this is actually her last name or not) for a drink and a little hot tubbing and man was it ever nice! We sat in that tub for 2 1/2 hours and let me tell you I am some relaxed. But it sure makes me long for a weekend of skiing and then relaxing in an outdoor hot tub in Canmore surrounded by the mountains. Yup, I definitely wouldn't turn that down right about now.

So what else is new in Baker Lake? The weather has been very odd this fall. By this time last year we had scads of snow, had had a couple of blizzards and it was cold! But this fall it's felt very much like a chinook in AB. A skiff of snow on the ground but warm and humid. It even smelled like a chinook. That is until last Friday (Nov 3rd) when it got cold and the lake finally froze over. It was so bizarre. It froze over on Friday and on Saturday afternoon there were people out on it walking. By Sunday there were people on it on their snow machines. Crrrrrazy!!!! Not for me thanks very much! I'm gonna wait until she's nice and thick before I venture out there. No sense risking getting my face wet unless I really have to!

Other than the weather, we've seen Halloween come and go which was a lot of fun. The teacher I work with and I dressed up as an old couple. We had a good time and won 1st prize out of the staff. Here are some pics of some of the costumes we saw that day. The one of the boy in the cardboard is my favorite. Well, the scarecrow is pretty awesome too. What a cutie!!

And then there was the Halloween house party that we went to. I dressed up as a Coronation Street fan (go figure!). A good time was had by all.

Obligatory Oliver picture - him people watching from his perch on my recumbent bike.

The exercise regime is still going good; I find it a challenge and a laugh though trying to do the floor stuff with Oli around as he always tries to either wrestle with my legs or sit on me! But what can you do... Oh, but exercising is much easier since I quit smoking! :-) 30 days and counting.....