Friday, January 28, 2011
Rock Wall/Flying Wild Alaska
This is a photo from right outside my house, the rock wall prevents flooding in the spring season, which there have been many floods in the past at this point where the river meets the sea. I cannot comment enough on the new Discovery show "Flying Wild Alaska"...it's so weird to watch the events that have been happening the last 6 months where I live on a national tv show. In the last episode (episode 2) they show a large moose that was shot by man who lives right next to my house. I remember walking home from work last fall and seeing the meat hung up on the meat racks and the hide laying right next to my pathway leading to my front door. I used to stop a few times walking to my house because the hide was so big that I thought it was a dog, and it startled me because there's a few rough and mean dogs in the village that wouldn't want to run into.
Episode 2 also talks about the suicide in the village of Shaktoolik, which was a extremely sad moment last fall, unfortunately it is something that happens quite a bit up here. Beyond outdoor activities (like hunting and fishing) there isn't really much going on, and a lot of young people become depressed and fail to find a purpose in life. So there are a lot of "Youth Leader/Job Corp" type of opportunities offered up here to help people along, just like the program offered by "Era" to help young people get on the path to become pilots. I'd say that if I was someone who grew up in Bush Alaska, I'd definitely become a bush pilot. There aren't many things in life that are more exciting or give you more of an adrenaline rush than what some of these bush pilots do.
The temperatures have been up and down the past couple of weeks. One day it's -20, with a high of -10, then the next day it's 15 degrees but the wind is blowing like crazy. Some nights are hard to sleep because of the howling of the wind blowing so hard against my house. It's supposed to be in the mid-to-upper 20s the next couple of days, so that will be nice. But then again, if the wind is blowing hard it doesn't really matter what temperature it is because it makes things completely miserable. The daylight is getting a lot better, the sun is pretty much up by 11:30 now, and it's completely setting around 6:30, so that's nice. I've noticed that the only real darkness you suffer from up here is in the morning, besides the sun not rising very high, the rest of the time it's not a lot different from anywhere in the lower 48.