Posted by: M.J. Bolstad | August 11, 2011

There’s No Place Like Home: Playing Tourist in My Home Town

While my previous entries have been older entries posted on a new blog, this next one is different for a few reasons.  Firstly, it is current: I am posting it in same day time.  Secondly, I haven’t actually travelled anywhere.  Instead, I am hosting a close friend (J), her 4 month old baby (the bug) , and her mom (B) in my home town of Yellowknife.

Let me take a quick step back.  J and company are visiting from Alberta, where I did my undergrad and where I met J.  She was my RA for two years, and we were canmates (our rooms adjoined by a shared washroom in dorms) for a year.  We’ve stayed quite close over the years, and I’m even the bug’s honorary aunt (and luck had it the bug was born at the tail end of my cruise adventure, so I even got to meet him at 12 hours old).  I’ve visited Alberta many, many times since finishing school, and a lot of time I’ve stayed with J and her husband while visiting family and other friends in the area.  But, as anyone in Yellowknife can probably tell you, getting your friends to venture North is fairly uncommon.  After all, Edmonton is our gateway to the rest of the world, and here is… well, it’s just not.  It’s out of the way, and not necessarily cheap (though better in the last few years now that there’s more airline competition) to get to and from.  So when J said she was thinking of taking me up on my offer to visit, bringing mom and the bug, while her husband went on his annual “man trip”, I was ecstatic. So I made arrangements to borrow the guest rooms at my parents’ since I live in a one bedroom apartment and they live on the lake front, and here we are.

Welcome to Yellowknife! Our baggage carousel.

We didn’t do a lot of exploring today.  The plane arrived shortly after one o’clock.  Bug was good as gold on the plane (no crying – I’d say it was a miracle, but since I wasn’t on the plane and that’s when babies seem to scream, I can’t say for sure) and it was fairly quick getting suitcases and stroller and carseat and diaper bag… Babies travel with a lot of stuff.  I was fortunate in that my bookstore boss (my part-time for fun job, if I haven’t mentioned it yet) was picking up a publishing rep at the airport, because even in my parents’ car (bigger than my cute Cobalt) and my best application of my Tetris skills, we could not fit everything in the back, so my boss drove the suitcases for me.  By the time we got settled and I gave the tour of the house, it was three o’clock. So we decided to take a leisurely walk.

B is waiting on a hip replacement, so we didn’t want to go to far, and I was wearing cheap flats from Walmart (terrible, terrible walking shoes), so we stuck to the old town. My parents live on Latham Island (in the old town), so it was not a long walk.  We looked at some of the historical buildings and the house boats on the lake.  We stopped in a few galleries to look at local art, jewelry and craftwork.  J really liked the moccasins but the locally crafted stuff can be a bit on the pricey side, and since she was thinking of the bug, I think she decided it wouldn’t be a good invested (they don’t stay little forever)!  We also walked a little way down Ragged Ass Road – yes, the one that inspired the Tom Cochrane song – before heading back for dinner.  Barbecue Carribbean Burgers with Mango Salsa and salad.  It’s so nice to cook for more than one person!  The rest of the night was mostly visiting and baby cuddling. My dad took a long turn – I think he might be the biggest baby fan in the family, though I’ve yet to see my brother compete for the title.  Now I’m home at my own place for the night, though I’ll go over early tomorrow for breakfast.  Not sure what is on our plate yet – if the weather is nice and my brother can find a small enough lifejacket for the bug (I don’t have enough friends with babies and my Facebook shout outs failed) we’re heading out on the lake in my parents boat.  If things don’t work out, I’m thinking the Legislative Assembly and the museum, and maybe some more of our small galleries.  We have a very artsy little city!

Until tomorrow!

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