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

Friday, May 30, 2008

Temp: 0
Windchill: -8
Cloudy, windy and calling for snow
Sunrise: 3:18 a.m.
Sunset: 11:26 p.m.

Well, as I write this tonight it's chilly outside and has been pretty windy for the past several days. But, the snow is melting quickly and the canada geese are flocking here as are the seagulls and cranes. Last night I couldn't sleep and was outside at 1:30 a.m. with Oli when I heard a lone crane calling as it flew overhead. It was so beautiful and peaceful. I'm always struck by the sound of the cranes; it's so prehistoric.

Today was a really lazy day as the weather is so crappy. Pretty much it consisted of a nap, a couple of movies, some reading, and a bit of visiting over tea. Not too much going on here at all with only 12 days left to go. This kind of day reminds me of rainy days down south spent curled up with tea and a good book. Relaxing and peaceful. Good times.

This week will fly by with school coming to a close so soon which always leaves me melancholy but I'm really looking forward to Wednesday evening as Susan Aglukark is rumored to be in town for a performance at the community hall. I've seen her once before and she's great so it will be a treat to see her performing in the north near her home turf.

And, other than that, I'm off to continue reading my book and just take it easy.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Temp: 0
Windchill: -4
Sunrise: 3:35 a.m.
Sunset: 11:08 p.m.

Well, only 17 more days left until the end of the 2007/2008 school year. Time is sure winding down. The weekend weather wasn't that great, not awful but just a bit dreary and chilly. Yesterday it snowed off and on pretty much all day. The boys spent the day trying to haul back Chris's snow machine as the motor blew out on it while out on the land; the slush is really deep now - up to their knees so as you can imagine everyone came back chilled and soaked from the knees down. But, the machine is back and will be doctored up and stored for the summer soon I'm sure.

Last night we all headed up to Shannon's place for an end of the year party. A lot of people will be leaving Baker this year and so it was nice to hang out for a bit and just shoot the breeze. Although it was odd heading to and from a party in the daylight I have to say. It doesn't get dark now, just dusky, and there are people out roaming around all night. Especially teens and it was a bit frustrating last night as my bedroom window won't close and the kids hang out at the Co-op across the parking lot, hollering and banging on the shed. They were out until 3:00 this morning and then I was woken up quite a bit earlier than I would have liked by my neighbour revving his honda outside my window to charge up the battery. So I'm a wee bit tired today but it's all good. And other than that, the day was spent working on a scrapbook for Todd and Jenesta's wedding which I think looks pretty neat. Here's hoping they agree! :-)

Anywho, here are several pics from our land trip with the kids a couple weeks ago. The weather was perfect and we all had a blast!

View of Baker Lake from The Point (Nuvu'tuaq)

Looking down at the fishing site

Caribou being prepared for our stew

Kristen and I soaking up the sun

Monday, May 19, 2008

Temp: -1
Windchill: -7
Sunrise: 3:50 a.m.
Sunset: 10:51 p.m.
Cloudy and chilly

This weekend we finally had sunshine and amazing weather! We all went out on the lake ice fishing and to have a bit of a picnic of bannock, hot dogs, tea and cookies. It was fantastic! Exactly what I needed. It's been pretty gloomy here weather-wise for a very long time so it was really great to get out. In fact, I found myself nursing a sunburn afterwards and couldn't be have been happier about it! :-)

Oli making the most of being out of the apartment finally!

Todd drilling the first hole

Tania and I chowing down on some bannock

Chad cooking up more of the secret recipe

Ivan catching some rays on his Honda

So now I find myself counting down until I'm AB-bound once again. Only 22 days left and I can hardly contain myself. The dose of sunshine this weekend gave me a bit of a lift and has me longing for greenery and sunshine. Now it's been pretty toasty down south so I've heard, so I may regret asking for warm weather but at this point, bring it on! And with only 13.5 school days left we are in wind-down mode. Good thing too as attendance is quite noticeably dropping and the staff are all anxious for the break. Tis the season after all.

I'm looking out at the ice that is the lake right now and the edge is wet with runoff; slowly the ice is creeping back from the shore although it's still 7 feet thick and won't fully melt until July. Soon snowmobilers will be skipping across the open water to get to the ice to head out hunting and fishing. Everyone is walking around with 'snow tans' and burns from being out on the land and, with that comes snow blindness. It's amazing how bright it is up here even when it's cloudy and gloomy, and unprotected eyes suffer the consequences. Bloodshot eyes become a frequent sight as even the shortest time without sunglasses can damage the eyes. And it's painful.

Other than that, the kids are very excited to be out on their bikes and to be wearing lighter clothes. Off come parkas for the most part and out come the spring jackets and running shoes or rubber boots. Still a bit chilly for me to break out the spring coat though as I tried it today and found my teeth chattering when I got to school, but the rubber boots have been out for a while. And, after rescuing a small child's bike from a VERY deep puddle, I realized I have a 1 inch gash in one of my boots and they fill quite quickly. Chilly! But, pink duct tape on my army green boots has temporarily rectified the problem and new ones will have to be purchased the first chance I get to head to a Peavy Mart down south. Sigh.. I have nothing if not an acute sense of fashion. :-)

Monday, May 12, 2008

Temp: 0
Windchill: -4
Sunrise: 4:16 a.m.
Sunset: 10:25 p.m.

It's been another busy week here in Baker; my mom and auntie have been up visiting. They've taken in the sights and we've spent the time visiting and playing cards which was great. And as I write this, they are sitting at the table listening to the local radio and playing bingo. Too funny... But, all good things come to an end and they are homeward bound tomorrow afternoon.

Anyway, here are a few pics from their trip.

The gals on the first leg of their trip up

My aunt Chrissie standing beside a snowdrift

More snow...

My mom trying her hand at some Inuit games

Mom and I at the Nunamiut lodge having lunch

Trying my hand at string games - the kids taught me how to do this cup and saucer.

And with all the excitement I hadn't even noticed until today how much time is left in the school year. There is less than a month before school is out and I am again Alberta-bound! I'm really looking forward to that (especially the haircut!). I'm really hoping to spend some time in Edmonton and I'll be heading out east for a couple of weddings which will be really nice. A trip to Newfoundland and one to the Ottawa area; I've never been either place and I'm pretty pumped about it. I've always wanted to check out NFLD and this is the perfect opportunity! And Ottawa, well what can I say? I've heard so many good things about it that I can't wait to go and check it out with the gang. Good times...

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Temp: -9
Windchill: -19
Snowing and blustery
Sunrise: 4:30 a.m.
Sunset: 10:11 p.m.

Well, it's been very busy up in the north lately. This past week my friend Pam was up from Edmonton taking in the northern experience and we had a great time. We took in the Hamlet week activities and she spent time with us in the class at school which the kids loved. The weather during her stay was off and on blustery and sunny so she got a true experience of what it's like to be up here. And, she finished it off by having the plane she was to fly out on go mechanical and have to wait at the Baker Lake airport from 7:30 a.m. until 3 p.m. until she was finally able to leave. That was after of course having to 4x4 through many a snowdrift just to get to the airport! Good times.... And now, just enough time to tidy up, wash the bedding and have my mom and auntie fly in tonight for a visit. Time flies!!

45 gallon barrel pull race

Ice chiseling with a twist - listening to the old IPod to keep motivated!

Caribou skin pull

Hee hee, our meal of caribou, rice and rolls at one of the Hamlet day feasts. Check out that plate!

Pam and I trying our hands at Arm Pull

Kids traditional dress contest for Hamlet days

Caribou skins drying

Pam and I out on Ivan's machine

Christopher checking out the Inukshuk

Pam's version of pole dancing in the Arctic! :-)

Sun over the lake, obviously. Still 7 feet of ice baby!!