Monday, August 25, 2008

Way North of Nova Scotia!

I finally arrived in Iqaluit after a hectic summer visiting with my family! It was nice to slow down and just check out the view. We have a terrific view from our apartment. To the right we have the airport so I can check out the planes as they land and take off. The yellow building in the background is the main terminal for the airport. To the left is Frobisher Bay where a large cargo ship, a couple military ships and numerous small fishing boats dot the water. The background is the mountainous coastline stretching for miles. Sometimes we even see white shapes floating in the water (icebergs). You can also see that much of the city is spread out in front of us.

It is a very rugged and rocky landscape. All you see are rocks and patches of grass. There are some different flowers scattered here and there. We have a few flowers growing by our driveway and they are Arctic Poppies. They look like poppies grown in NS but they are much shorter. The weather is much cooler than home at this time of year. It has been around 10' C most days. We only had 1 day of rain since I arrived. Many roads are gravel but they have paved a lot of roads on the other side of town and most of the downtown. We are in an area where they are doing a lot of construction so many of truck travel by our place daily. We wont be getting our road paved for this year. The building sometimes shakes when large vehicles go by, or if there is a strong wind and when my washer goes into the spin cycle.

We have checked out a number of the restaurants and other shops in town. When you are eating in the restaurants it is not unusual for a number of people to go by wanting to sell you different types of Innuit art. Jacques bought me a pair of earrings made out of whale baleen. They are little, black Inukshuks. I have tried caribou steak and musk-ox stew and enjoyed them.

I was into the school and am excited to get going and meet the children in my class. It is very strange starting to set up in a new place and not knowing how things work or where anything is. At least I can find my classroom. The students have gym 2 times a week and language classes every day so those are my prep classes. Some students take French and the others the Innuit language. There is no music teacher so these lucky children will get to listen to my singing voice...Oh Dear! You cannot miss the school as it is the big marshmallow in the center of town. It is about a 10 minute walk from my place but the walk home is straight uphill. Maybe I will lose some weight hiking home after school??? Maybe Not!

Talking about fitness...Jacques and I checked out the local provincial park. We hiked to the falls and checked out the people fishing for Arctic Char. We may soon get rods and fishing licences to check it out ourselves. One couple were having a fire on the hillside. It reminded me of bonfires at the beach. Here you have to scrounge for scraps of lumber if you want to have a fire as there is no wood on the land to burn. There's lots of scrap wood from all the pallets left from things being shipped in and all the building going on. It really is a very different place from the maritimes that I am used to!
Missing home but looking forward to lots of new adventures and experiences!