Category Archives: Fun with Work Mates

On the Road…

On Monday I left Pang…flew to Iqaluit.  It should have been a simple thing, but sometimes travel in the north isn’t so simple. It has been extremely windy / bad weather  in Pang or bad weather in Iqaluit so that meant that and the last plane that came into town was Thursday Evening.  So with no planes on Friday, Saturday or Sunday (that’s about 5 flights leaving town) that meant a lot of people trying to leave town-and only a few seats!  I was one of them trying to get a seat to Iqaluit…(my flight from Saturday was cancelled, rebooked to Sunday, which was also cancelled-then rebooked for Tuesday PM)…to make a long story short, I was put on the wait list for both flights Monday Morning, but ended up getting a seat on one of the charter flights.  I suppose one thing I was reminded of today was, things always work out…but there’s nothing straight forward about flying!

Inside the Pang terminal was full of people, but also there were 4 planes on the ground outside… 2 from First Air and 2 from Air Nunavut (charter flights).

In Iqaluit today I saw two random licence plates from the USA.  I did a double take, and saw both of these plates within 5mins of each other! There is NO way that these cars have DRIVEN to Iqaluit (as there are no roads connecting Nunavut communities to the rest of southern Canada)…but I suppose people have connections to places in the south-so why not show it? 

The next leg of my trip was flying to  Arviat… the flight was about 3 1/2 hours.  During this flight, my tailbone decided to remind me that I broke it during Easter weekend.  Honestly it hasn’t been hurting in awhile, but now it’s reminded me that I do indeed have a tailbone, and it’s not happy!

Some views from inside the King Air. The co-pliot going on the right–goes through the safety features of the aircraft.  I did a ‘wide-angle’* self portrait of everyone on the plane…(* I’m shocked I actually decided to share this photo-especially because the wide-angle made me look double my size!)

Some shots from the air… taken before my nap!

At one point when we were on the plane… I looked up and saw that someone had ‘signed’ the roof of the plane. Who would have known that Mr. Harper has such great cursive writing?  After looking at the date, I realized that this was the same plane that brought Mr. Harper to Pang in August of 2009…when I met him.

Quite a few other people, MLAs and DMs in Nunavut + other random people had also signed the roof of the plane!  Some of them signed before our Prime Minister did in 2009, and some of the signed after.  This was one club I didn’t join, so no signatures left by me!

 

Coming into land in Arviat… I was glad to get my first glimpse of the community-I had to pee!  

After we landed, there were some pretty cool clouds…with the sun trying to fight it’s way through!

After dinner…some of my coworkers and I went on a little walk around Arviat.  The following are some of the photos from that walk!

….one of the things I like to do is take photos of signs when I visit new places.  The ‘refueling’ sign was at the airport… and the RK’D is a spot that as ‘Arcade’ Games as well as food and groceries! The last photo was a random bike jump that was set up on a street here in Arviat, but no one but us was on that street at that time! 

A snow mobile left near the ice, so hunters can still leave the community to hunt.  Evidence of where hunters were outside many homes…on this ATV there were 2 MuskOx heads.

While we were walking, we passed the Margaret Aniksak Visitor’s Centre.  There was a group of people outside-they invited us inside.  They were practicing songs, drum dancing and throat singing. They were getting ready to perform in Ottawa and were talking about organizing a trip to Igloolik as well at some point in the future.  After heading inside, we were soon offered chairs to sit on…and a mini-performance for us began.  This was one of those really-cool-random-moments, of just being in the right place in the right time.   I’m so glad that this moment happened.  It was amazing to hear the Elders sing.  Listening to women throat sing is just amazing.  It is such a beautiful art, and  I love listening to throat singers…there is something so powerful in hearing their songs.

It was a perfect ending to my first evening here in Arviat.  I can’t wait to see what happens over the next few days!

Gone Fishin’

Today at work we had an IQ Day. When I worked here in 2009 I got to participate in two IQ days.  I went fishing in the SPRING and in the SUMMER.   IQ is short for Inuit Qaujimajatuqangit is traditional Inuit Knowledge. Below is a bit more about these societal values…

Inuit as a people have a long-standing code of behaviour based on time-honored values and practices. These values were communicated to younger Inuit at a very early age through stories, songs, direct modeling of behaviour and legends that spoke of the success associated with remembering them. *Source*

Today my coworkers and I headed out on the land to go ice fishing at Iqalukjuak.  Iqalukjuak means Big Fish in Inuktitut.  It’s about a two hour (maybe a bit more) drive from Pang.  Here’s a shot of the lake….
We met at the ‘beach’ early this morning around 7am before heading to the lake! There was some organizing of who was going in what kamotik or skidoo… then we were off!
Views from the trail… today was such an amazing day!  Blue skies…great people…and tons of fish… It’s finally warm enough to be able to head out to enjoy the snow.  And there’s still heaps of it up here!
The kamotik that was my ‘ride’ for the day.  I actually don’t mind riding in them… it’s a fun, a bit bumpy… but alright.  Today this was the part of the trip that worried me… I fell last week wearing my kamiks inside my friend’s kitchen.  I fell hard, legs went out from under me…and went from standing to sitting with my legs out in front of me in a V.  It was a HARD fall… and my tailbone isn’t happy right now.  For the ride out I knelt in the kamotik, holding the sides of it to steady myself on the bumps… then coming home I was tried resting on my side/hip… and ended up coming home that way.  So that’s the way I got around SITTING and bouncing on my tailbone for 2+hrs!
…it was amazing after getting to the lake, we started getting holes in the water…and fish started getting pulled out of holes everywhere!
My Iqalukjuak..it was the 2nd fish I caught today, but the 3rd in my life I’ve EVER caught. I gave it to my friend to share with her family–it was just TOO big for me to eat on my own and I didn’t want to waste any.  Char is always better FRESH…For my family, don’t worry when I come south in the summer… I’ll bring some ‘big’ ones to share with you!
There were three prizes given today.  1. First Fish Caught 2. Biggest Fish and 3. Smallest Fish.  I won for the ‘smallest’ fish… I’m holding it below!  Also there’s a photo of me just after I caught my first fish…literally happened within the first 5mins of starting jigging!
These are the two ‘biggest’ fish from the day… Mine is the bottom one, not quite the biggest-but close!  My coworker and I showing off our catch!
One of my co-worker’s made her amazing bannock…she calls it “Move over Tim Horton’s” because it’s WAY better than any Tim’s donuts I’ve EVER had!…Here’s mine that has a big bite out of it!
Here’s some views from around the lake….
We stopped at the River on our way back to town…overall it’s really shallow, and the ice was really thin with some ‘open’ spots!  But that didn’t stop people from catching fish…I just wandered and took photos!
It wasn’t very ‘bright’ and the photo doesn’t really capture what I saw, but there was a FULL rainbow around the sun!
Then it was time to head home… a shot of me ‘kneeling’ in the kamotik!
Today was my first time on the Kulik River Trail… I’d heard stories about it. There’s a spot at the beginning of trail that’s incredibly steep, and very narrow… going up I was a bit freaked out, but totally trusted the person driving the skidoo that was towing the kamotik!  Off to the side… is a very ‘steep’ crazy drop to the river below.  Below is a photo from the bottom of the ‘steep’ part.  (it’s hard to actually see the trail.. and how crazy-narrow-steep it is… the trail winds up to the top of this photo…) Someone has constructed a ‘fence’ to stop you from going off the trail and rolling off the edge!
The view from across the fiord, almost home!  Today was an amazing day…I had a BLAST…the bumpy ride in a kamotik was so worth it.  I had many reminders today of how blessed I truly am to live where I do, and experience the things I am experiencing.  I work with some amazing people, it was great to spend a day out on the land fishing with them.  Can’t wait until the next time.
UPDATED: I just realized I crossed off another thing on my “List of 32 Things to do when I’m 32”…Number 19: “Go ice-fishing and catch an Arctic Char..or at least attempt to”… YAHOO for checking another off the list!

Back to School…

Although this year I won’t be heading off to school…as a teacher or student–which is kind of weird for me.  (But honestly I’m kind of glad that I’m not, but then again–I kind of miss the idea of school…perhaps not the essays, but the learning, and social scene etc!) After typing this I just realized that I too might be heading back to school to finish up 2 classes that are required for a Certificate in Adult Ed I was working on… hmmm I guess I should start working on that.

Just because it’s that time of year and because my Facebook home page is full of ‘back-to-school’ news… I thought I’d jump on that bandwagon and send some “Back-to-School” greetings to some people I know heading back!

The first person that jumped into my mind is my nephew, Samuel, who is heading back to school today… heading off to the big world of SK (Senior Kindergarten)!

Dear Samuel, I hope you have a fantastic day… and you have lots of fun with your teacher and classmates!  I can’t wait to hear about school next time we skype!

🙂 luv, Aunt Sarah…

And secondly, I’d like to also send some best-wishes and greetings to my old co-workers at RRC…

To the ECE Crew at RRC,  Hope you also have a FANTASTIC year…wishing you all the best as you start off Term 1& 3!! You are an incredibly talented crew of people…and I’m glad I got to work with you for the 18months that I did!! 🙂

(I grabbed this photo from Facebook–I sent the ‘edible-arrangement’ to everyone a few weeks ago, when they were back at the college prepping classes, and easing back into the work scene after the summer!…)

Hope that everyone that has a child going to school…or is returning to school or is a teacher.. have a fabulous year! Fall in the air… which means winter is around the corner…I’m actually starting to get excited about seeing snow, ok I guess I shouldn’t get too far ahead of myself…

 

Exploring Manitoba’s Interlake…

My journey began early on Sunday Morning… I got up and headed to Clandaboye to spend the day with Conni aka my MB Mum!  She had offered to tour me around the “Interlake Region”..or her backyard!  I was pretty excited, because I had heard lots of amazing things about Gimli and Winnipeg Beach and couldn’t wait to find the Viking Statue…but I’m getting ahead of myself here…

Our first stop was at a beach just south of Winnipeg Beach… and Conni wanted me to ‘experience’ one of the “piers” along Lake Winnipeg…

..should I take the risk?

I'm off to the challenge... (little did I know how scary it would be!)

Conni even with her fear of the water did walk out to the end of the pier with me… after all I am her ‘adopted daughter’!

(I have no fear of water, but some of heights–it was an interesting trip out! especially meeting a group on the walk out that were returning to the shore…and well it had been repaired–but some of those boards really sagged!!)

Once out at the end of the Pier… the Village of Dunnottar gave us this nice warning!

It was too scary umm COLD for me to try to walk down the stairs to get my toes wet!!!  Instead Conni and I took some fab photos in the wind!!!

It was ‘crazy’ windy… and every time we jumped back in the car… we had to try to make our hair behave–only to step out and let the wind mess it all up again!

These ‘piers’ make a pretty cool photo…and are pretty neat that they are maintained each year and kept along the shores as a link to the past~  although with crazy with high water levels-it has made them quite dangerous!

To get to the where we parked we had to cross a rail road track… coming back to the car I saw this sign… Conni assured me that there were rarely any trains coming!

Our next stop was at Winnipeg Beach… where a long time ago had a roller coaster and amusement park right by the lake!

There has been a huge problem here with erosion and the beach and part of the board walk is eroding back into the lake!

We walked along the board walk–enjoying the sunshine!  Conni and I left her house to ‘escape’ the Grand Prix in Montreal…but when we got to Winnipeg Beach there was a car show… and much to Conni’s amusement… I took my time to looked at  all the cars.. and make comments about them too!

Then we headed into “Playland”…

The sign use to have light bulbs and I could imagine it all shining in day and night!  (I’m good a pretending and imagining!)

…it was a pretty fun place!

Some of the posters that were on the wall…

Conni found a ‘Grand Prix” game… apparently today she couldn’t quite escape race cars!!!!

I was upset that I couldn’t go on the pony…. my MB Mum said I was too old!!

Around this time we spotted the ‘scary’ clown… now I understand that NOT all clowns are SCARY, or CREEPY might be a better word.. but LOOK at this guy!? (If clowns creep you out you might want to scroll past FAST! hehehe)

If that wasn’t enough… above him was the following poster….

I told Conni that perhaps our “brief encounter” at Playland should come to a close…. she laughed and agreed.. and we walked out that door!! (Speaking of doors… take a look at those doors… they are pretty cool.. and old school, I like it!)

We walked over to this other place that had THIS, being a tourist for the day–I had to pose by the photo…. (it’s good to have photos by ‘signs’ so that you remember where one has travelled later after you have returned home!)

Pretty cool sculpture…Now this photo might need a bit of explanation.. so bare with me.. as I give it to you–whether you want it or not!  I totally laughed out loud.. when I saw the ‘speed bumps’  in the middle of the road.. (on all sides of the crazy-intersection)…Apparently it use to be a kind of ‘free-for-all’ type of intersection–cars/trucks/people doing what they pleased… So… Winnipeg Beach… put these handy dandy little ‘dividers’ up so that cars can’t decide to go where-ever they wanted to go..but instead had to go to the stop sign and STOP and then make a left hand turn… (you know, obeying the basic rules of the road) I think that’s why I thought it was so funny… Anyways… I went out into the street and squatted down… (I’m a tourist so it’s ok.. and as a tourist you can take silly photos…) While doing this I think Conni took a photo of me—and by the end we both were laughing a bit more! But I did get my photo of the crazy dividers on the road… Does anyone know what they are called?! And that was the end of my visit at Winnipeg Beach!

Next it was off to Gimli… we decided it was time to have lunch…

We both had the “Gyros” and “fries”… and I had a chocolate shake with REAL ice cream!! mmmm mmm GOOD!

Then we decided to head down to the lake and walk along the boardwalk…. I’m not 100% sure what this is called… but along this wall (which makes a ‘safe’ harbour place for boats to anchor)…but the Gimli Art Club paints paintings along the wall… (another co-worker’s mother has a few of her paintings still on the wall…) it’s a really neat idea!

It also provides a place to fish from… and well hang out… enjoy a nice summer’s afternoon! 

Made me ‘almost’ wish I had a fishing rod to join in…. and just chill and seize the moment!  Almost… but writing this reminds me I DO need to go shopping for a fishing rod~

Tercesen’s Store.. I think EVERY community NEEDS one of these stores… filled with a hodge-podge of awesome amazing things!! This store has been owned and run by the SAME family since it opened… inside (I couldn’t take any photos) there was an original tin ceiling, and the floor had squeaked as you watched over them…. pretty awesome store, you NEED to check it out if you get to Gimli!!!

The clothing made me wish I was a Size 10 so that I could shop–very trending awesome stuff!  It has a bit of everything… from BOOKS to kitchen stuff to clothes to HATS!  I walked away with a Children’s Book about living in the prairies and the HAT you see in some of the photos!  (I LOVE a good hat!)… Mmmmm chocolate!!! I *think* this was a “Rodgers” chocolate from B.C…. I got a chocolate-chocolate one… Conni had one with Coffee filled chocolate… It was sooooo good!  Like it FILLED me up… I almost couldn’t finish this little piece… (it was so filling!) I know I’ll be craving it as my ‘new’ favourite chocolate and want to eat as many as possible!!!  Thanks for the introduction… now I will just need to figure out how to get them once I move… any suggestions? hehehe  We ate these chocolates on a lovely bench… (it might have been sticky from the sap of a tree, and it might have faced a truck parked along the sidewalk…but all I remember is the lovely breeze and the water in the distance… remember I’m quite good at pretending!)

After striking out at the two of the more ‘touristy’ shops… (they were closed) I finally saw the “viking”… this was my ONE request of the day to see the Viking (I’m lucky I got to see so much more than this!) If you want to know more about GIMLI and why it all started and WHY there’s a Viking there… then go check THIS site!!

Of course… there had to be a photo shot with the Viking…

Conni waiting for me to take my photos… so we could do a ‘group’ shot!! The self-portrait that worked!!!(the other one we cut off the head of the Viking–)Then I took a few photos with Mr. Viking….

One weekend in the spring and one  weekend in the fall different artists in the “interlake” open up their studios and there is a ‘ wave tour’ to go around and visit them, and buy things! This year was the 10th Anniversary of starting this traditions… Conni and  I went to a few different spots… and one of the first stops of the day was also the LAST stop of the day!  I fell in love with this paper art… One of the things I’ve done is get art from various places I’ve lived… so I can have every-day reminders of where I’ve been at my house!  I found my Manitoba art…

Milli is the artist… you can read more about her HERE… Something about her story and her art truly touched me!  Milli has been able to show many people over the years that having an extra chromosome (Down syndrome) and autism should not limit your abilities.. the SKY is the LIMIT!!

Milli with "Pushing Up Daisies"

I love this… with wild daisies from the prairies… and homemade paper!  Us together in Milli’s studio and future house!

Just when I thought my visit and tour of the “interlake” was done… Conni took me to ONE more spot… and I’m so glad she did!!

We went to “Netley Resort and Campground”… I think staying here is on my bucket list.. something that has to be done at some point in my life! Here’s the entrance to the Campground…. It’s a friendly place eh? Has a feeling of well security knowing you’d be ‘locked-in’ for certain hours… Just one of the campsites… it was a place basicly of campers and well ‘established’ campsites…

Thanks for that tour… I’ll always remember it!!

Conni also played photographer… she helped me take the following photos… I’m sooo excited and thankful!  I had this idea of what I wanted in my brain… and before Ryan deserted me and went out west he was suppose to take some shots with me, but that didn’t happen…

But Conni she rocked my camera.. and I’m so thankful for these shots!!

…and they are even more special because they were taken on YOUR road!!!

Thanks again for sharing  a bit more of the province with me!! 🙂

>Walk-on!!!

>

Monday, I took part in the annual Walk-a-thon at work… it was great ‘fun’, raising money for scholarships!  A few co-workers and I headed down at noon…to do our part, and walk around the school!  I got a t-shirt with this written on it…. 
Throughout the route there were tables with draws for prizes and fun activities to do… Just before I left the office for an appointment… I got a phone call.. I had WON the grand prize!!! (see the loot below!)AMAZING!!!! 

 
2 folding camp stools, chair in a bag, t-shirt, RRC fleece blanket, purse/bag thing with water ball, frisbee, pen, 2010-2011 Calendar, water bottle… 

A self-portrait with the new t-shirt… 

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