-31 today? No biggie.
I'm at the B&B and so are two Germans (well one lives in Calmar, but the other is from Munich) They're photographers/videographers and they drove up here from Calmar in 5 days!!! They've taken some amazing pictures and videos of the North as they drove on the Alaska and Dempster highways.
They wanted to go down to the Ocean to get some pictures and invited me to come along. We actually went down the hill (and all fell) and stood on the Ocean itself. Their pictures will be much better I'm sure.
We got wonderfully lost trying to find the Northmart and my house, but eventually found it. The grocery prices are not that ridiculous, especially compared to Drayton Valley... Also they totally have lactose free milk. The biggest difference is that they sell pelts in the store. And they're BEAUTIFUL and lovely.
I went to the hamlet office to try and figure out utilities, but they were closed. We also saw the radio station and pretty much everywhere. The Germans are headed back down to Calmar now and we exchanged info and I promised to send them photos of Tuk in the Summer.
The most important lesson I would like to impart from my flight today is that one should never have a pressurized sealed water bottle on a plane. Once you are in the air, you will open it and a jet of water will shoot out and soak you. The flight attendants thought it was awesome and that I handled myself like a boss. I admitted it had already happened on the first flight. And every time I put something carbonated in that bottle…
But the first big surprise was when to check my luggage. I had been informed numerous times by the GNWT who was booking my travel, that I could bring 6 pieces of luggage weighing less than 70 pounds. I get to the first air desk and they say nope. 5 max, you'll have to send the other one via cargo. And we can only guarantee 2 bags so pick the two you need the most…
WTF does that mean?!?! I pay for excess baggage (on the government's dime) and I'm not guaranteed to even get it?! And if they send it on a plane to my final plane destination of Inuvik, that doesn't matter because I'm going to be living in Tuk. I'm typing on the plane, so hopefully this resolves itself.
Also, fun fact, I only got my initial boarding pass, so once I arrived in Yellowknife I was like, what am i doing where do I go?? And then when I went to board, they're like, that's the wrong boarding pass…. Luckily I have lots of ID and I was the second passenger on the list and I had my baggage claim stickers proving that I really am flying to Inuvik via Norman Wells!
Now the plane to Yellowknife was a turbo prop and I was sat with a family with an infant and squished. Luckily the front rows were empty so I got moved up and got extra leg room and close proximity to the toilet.
The flight to Inuvik however is cush. It's a 737, leathery seats. Lots of space. And there's only like 30 people on it max. I have my own row again. It's awesome.
My plane magazines? Good Housekeeping, Real Simple and Vanity Fair. Good Housekeeping let me down in the lack of articles. Vanity Fair of course was awesome for hq writing and Real Simple was good too.
When I arrived in Yellowknife, I had no cell service. If I had Bell or Telus I would have. Nothing for Rogers/Speak out. I have low low expectations for service in Tuk. So someone's getting a new number again….
I've just opened a Google docs file on my phone to work offline and write. It better save… I have comics and stuff offline on my laptop, but it's enormous, so I'll stick to writing.
Also on first air, you get breakfast, a drink and a hot towel. I didn't know what to do with the hot towel. I just took lots of napkins because I'm a mess.
My second flight is Canadian North. Its the nice big one. We stop in Norman Wells and then go on to Inuvik. Then I probably get in a fight over my luggage and get confused trying to find my taxi which will be too small. Oooooor everything will work perfectly.
You'll just have to keep reading. I'll probably type lots more once I'm in the cab and then again when I'm settled tonight.
Also it's not even dark so….
Just got off in Norman Wells to stretch and walk and buy a new magazine? Lol no magazines, joker. Did get a nice stretch in.
Again it is eternal darkness? It's noon and looks like dawn/dusk. Like you could read a book outside no problem.
Imma be disappointed if I get to Tuk and it's like this. It would be awesome if it was dark weirdness like an eclipse or tornado. Those kinds of dark skies are so weird and awesome.
As we landed in Norman Wells, my first thought was that dumbass Josh Hartnett vampire movie where it's in the Arctic because it's always dark.
Vampires would be like eh, this is mediocre darkness.
Arrived in Inuvik. My luggage all arrived. The cabbie said it's a scam and his luggage always comes on the flight even without fees.
Once I got everything on my wagons and started to look for where I'd find a cab driver a guy comes up and says “Hannah?” And I say yes! And I give him my other cart of boxes.
My mother was worried that they'd show up in a Mazda. I'm in a big black dodge ram. Bouncing along the ice road.
Now in Tuk. I’m renting the old mission house from the Anglican Church and I was to meet the volunteer who’s been taking care of the house. She is a wonderful kind lady and she takes me and the cab to the house and helps unload. The house looks like a haunted barn and I’m in love. Unfortch, the sewage and water aren’t working. They say it should be fixed tomorrow. Luckily, I am a clever clogs and had a B&B reservation way in advance. So no worries. I am warm and cozy and have wifi. No phone service though. Gotta switch to Bell.
Everyone is lovely. The VP of the school lives below the B&B and is going to take me around the hamlet tomorrow with his wife. The church volunteer is going to help me get all my utilities set up and said she’d told the church to give me a discount since the house isn’t ready yet. The cab driver was from Edmonton, and he was also wonderful. It’s been positive. Also I’m hungry.
Stupid cooler didn’t make it up. Luckily I have a fig bar! And so much water. Healthiest bladder ever.
Because I’m a teacher, obviously my blogs will never mention students or school specifics. I don’t like to name anyone unless I’ve gotten permission either. Just keeping thing copacetic.