Posted by: The Starfish Dancer | June 10, 2012

Treaty Partying It Up in the Sahtu: Day #2

Well, it’s another day in another community, and I am tired and glad to be in for the night.  We had a bit of a long day, though I did get a few chances to explore before and after the work day. We started out in Norman Wells, as you know, where I got up, made my hotel room coffee, got dressed and packed up, then made my way to the Heritage Hotel’s restaurant for the continental breakfast

Inside the Norman Wells Heritage Museum

they serve.  I was unusually hungry, since I’m not normally a breakfast person, but this turned out to be a good thing as our day got a bit wonky.  After breakfast I checked out, then briefly went next door to my Department’s district office to pay a visit to our one Norman Wells colleague.  I’ll be back in a couple of weeks, overnighting to help out another program, so I offered to bring in some things if his family needed them.  Things are not cheap in Norman Wells.

After that, we did our SCIS application for a few hours, though there were not very many people. Then we packed up and grabbed a few things for lunch since there is no restaurant at our next stop,in Tulita.  We also made a brief stop at the little Heritage Museum, but it turns out we really, really shouldn’t have done so. Even though we were booked on a charter flight, our plane did not wait for us.  We ended up waiting in the airport for several hours.  This meant that when we finally did get to Tulita, we went straight to work, and ended up running into the evening.  It was 8:15 by the time we were able to pack up for the night, and it was much,

The sun shines high in the sky after nine o’clock at night, and Tulita community members gather in the arbor, where the youth are playing handgames.

much busier than Norman Wells since Tulita does have a Band. It was pretty much a whirlwind until 7:30, when it slowed down, despite the fact that there was a meeting being held elsewhere and the Hamlet held a feast. A few people were frustrated by the lines or the amount of documentation they had to bring, but most people were patient and good natured.  I’m sure it was nice for them to get out of the heat – it was a whopping 35C when we arrived, even though the Hamlet is on the River and we’re pretty far North.

After we’d packed up and checked into the Two Rivers Hotel, a smallish lodge with very spacious rooms and awesomely high beds, we went to dinner. One of my colleagues, RoseAnn, has family here, including her daughter, who made us delicious goose soup.  I also popped over next door to the little canteen for some soft ice cream to help cool down, because the sun is still high in the sky (at 10:30 pm!), then did a little walking.  Sarah and I went down to the river to take some photos, and peeked in a little heritage site, a very small Anglican Church built in 1890. A little up the road, in the community’s arbor, there were some Hand Games going on, but

I was too tired to do more than watch for a few minutes.  I did take a quick stroll through the old graveyard, which is quite beautiful,

A small church is a historic site in Tulita.

then it was back to the hotel for me.  It looks like the hotel water is safe to drink, since it is trucked in, but since I saw a town sign saying it was under a boil water advisory, I’m playing it safe and brushing my teeth with some bottled water.

As I mentioned earlier, there is no restaurant here, but each room appears to have a microwave and a little fridge, and there’s a kitchenette that is shared by all the rooms.  Sadly, we didn’t have time to run to the Northern Store before it closed at six and it doesn’t open until ten, so we’re out of luck for bacon and eggs tomorrow. I did pack some meal replacement bars, so I won’t go hungry, but if you stay here and are pressed for time, you might want to bring your food in!  Certainly the community is very beautiful and I’m sorry I don’t have more time to spend in it (and the others).  But for now I should  sign off and start to wind down, since it may just be another long day again. Until tomorrow!

 

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