Sunday, February 27, 2011

Images of a Recent Past

Today I went to the Nunatta Sunakkutaangit Museum for the first time.  I was pleasantly surprised to find it open on a Sunday.  The Museum has two main rooms, one for the permanent collection of artefacts and works of art and another for temporary exhibitions.  Today I got to see the Pangnirtung 2010 Print Collection.  The man working there also told me that on March 22nd would be the opening of the new exhibition in which artists deal with the experience of residential schools.  Should be really interesting.  Anyhow, there is also an upstairs to the museum where the walls are lined with display windows where you find lots of sculptures but also some cool skulls!  Walrus and Beluga to be precise.. But I won't be posting pictures of those today because I have dedicated this post to a most interesting part of the second floor: a table where people can sit down to look through four big photo albums filled with original photographs of Iqaluit and other communities from 1948 upwards!! These pictures were absolutely unreal!!  I took shot of a few of them.  Oh, also!  I recently found out that my grandfather had actually been up here in 1955 (back when it was called Frobisher Bay) and had worked on the DEW Line for a number of months.  I was trying to see if I could spot him in any of the pictures.  I thought I may have but I will have to check with my Mom before jumping the gun.  Anyhow, here are a few pictures of pictures.

View of the table where the photo albums are.

c. 1948 - Iqaluit started out as an American airbase.. Not very poetic.

c. 1948

c. 1948

c. 1955 (grand-papa are you in there?)

c. 1956 (grand-papa is that you?)

c. 1960 - Coolest baby ever.

c. 1960 - I'm amazed at how much the Inuit remind me of the Tibetan people.

c. 1960 - This one I just found too adorable.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Huskies! (Dédié à Philémon)

So, if you know me you know that I LOVE dogs and being here I thought I would be seeing huskies left, right and center... I was wrong!  Up until today I had seen a few other dogs (surprisingly lots of little hyper yappy shnitzel types) but had yet to see a single husky!  So I went on a mission this afternoon to find "the huskies".  I put it in brackets because there are other huskies around town (although I have yet to see any) but the huskies I was looking for are the ones that are trained for dog races.  I was told they are all kept together outside sort of behind the airport.  I headed towards the airport but ended up taking the "wrong" street and walking right up to the little valley where they are being kept.  The conditions are kind of sad because they are chained up to this single chain that is littered with dog poo.  I wonder if they ever get cold.  Some of them had pretty bloody muzzles, which makes me wonder what they are fed.  Anyhow, here are some pictures of them, some cute and some a bit eerie.  I didn't want to venture out too far because I had no idea if this was private property or not.  I want to go back during the week and try to talk to someone who is in charge of the dogs so that way maybe I will see them when they are eating or maybe even be able to pet them.

Lone Wolf.  I figured this guy must be the leader of the pack because he was the only one who wasn't chained up to the main chain.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Full Moon Nocturnal Excursion

"Talk of your cold! through the parka’s fold it stabbed like a driven nail.
If our eyes we’d close, then the lashes froze till sometimes we couldn’t see; 
It wasn't much fun but the only one to whimper was Sam McGee"

So my roommate and I decided to walk up the mountain behind our house and check out the landscape at night.  The moon was full and lighting up the land to the point where we could see everything for miles.  I took about 20 minutes to walk up the first hill from where we could look down upon this immense valley that made us feel like we were walking on another planet.  Unfortunately, it was really hard to capture the depth of the moonlit desolated land.  Regardless, I have a few pictures to put up (and I actually thought my hand was going to fall off when I was taking them).  That is also why most of them are blurry: long exposure time in -50 doesn't make for very steady pictures.

Des vagues de neige.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Rise and Shine

I took these pictures this morning when I got to work and then a few more at lunch time.  This is what I get to see right in the backyard of the school.  Pretty neat!  (oh and I've included a mandatory self-portrait too hehe)  Oh also taking these pictures led to me thinking my hand was going to fall off (I guess that's what -49 feels like on bare skin).. But I definitely think it was worth it!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Grocery Shopping in Iqaluit

Sooo I had prepared this great little video tour of the apartment but apparently uploading videos here takes about 1 week so instead, for your entertainment pleasure, I will post pictures of food prices!


And I used to complain about how the price of cereals had gone up in Ottawa...  I will be dreaming of those $5 boxes from now on!

I think shopping for food in Iqaluit is like shopping at a really expensive gas station.

I'll pass.

Orange juice has never looked so painful.

This is just funny.  I will also pass.

Oh look!!  A sale!! (That's a 7 by the way, not a 1.)

To be expected, but still... Won't be having much of that either.

So these are some of the most extreme things I saw while shopping at the North Mart but people who live here have ways of getting around the ridiculous prices.  One way is not to buy the ridiculously overpriced things, but another is also to order a lot of produce and food products from Ottawa or Montreal.  Anyway, that's it for now!


Saturday, February 12, 2011

Cold Feet Not Allowed

View from the plane, coming up to Iqaluit.  What looks like a starry sky was caused by the frost forming on the outside of the window.

Another view from the plane.  SO incredible.  It felt like something I had seen on IMAX or the Planet Earth series.

Somewhat frozen after a 30 minute walk to the NorthMart in - 48 weather.

View from my bedroom window right onto Frobisher Bay.  Best seat in the house!

Two ravens also enjoying the view of Frobisher Bay.

Another view from my window, sketched by yours truly.

So I landed in Iqaluit on February 11th and so far everything has simply been amazing!  I was glad that there were no problems with my luggage.  My 3 bins of food made it safe and sound as well as my clothes and art supplies (including a glass ink bottle I was praying wouldnt bust and leak all over my clothes).  I can't describe how exciting it is to be here and experience something completely new.  I got really lucky in terms of living accommodations: amazing huge two-story place at the highest point in Iqaluit, shared by a super nice French couple and a hilarious girl from Slovakia.  Oh and the room I got is furnished!  I will post pictures of the apartment soon.

In case you're wondering about the name I chose for the blog, it is actually the name of the road I am living on!  It is a road that, as its name describes, goes nowhere, meaning that it ends in the middle of nowhere and ultimately has no real destination.

Alright, well that's it for now but I have so much to say that I will be posting again soon!
In the meantime, I am safe, sound and having a great time!

- Pascale