Over the Labor Day weekend, Jeff and I headed way up the Gweek River camping. It was great fun, the weather on the Saturday was just awesome, well in to the 70F’s with clear blue skies. I have a few photos I’ll post, but the second camping spot we ended up at gave us an amazing sunset and moon rise. We were both a little tired when we got back on Sunday, but experiences like that all add up. It was quite weird to be way up the Gweek to the point of needing a canoe, and to then end up drifting back down to camp covered in camo duck hunting. It got me thinking whilst grilling salmon how much of a difference a year makes.
I never really think back on my times in Tunt and long to be back or wish for things to have turned out differently, but have thought a few times over the summer how different it must be for the teachers that find themselves stationed around Bethel in Napaskiak, Oscarville or Napakiak, or up around Kwethluk; or west coast sites like Mekoryuk, Toksook Bay or Tununak. The southern coastal sites like Tunt, Kong and Kwig are quite, quite different, and feel a lot more remote and desolate. I couldn’t imagine trees like I’ve seen around the Kwethluk or Gweek Rivers, and even small rolling hills or the abundance of bird life or fishing when I was living in Tunt. A year ago this past weekend I was spending the Labor Day weekend moving up to Bethel, and I can first remember feeling something not quite right after my second day on the job here whilst phoning back that the evening.
Contrast to today where I was calmly balancing so many district-wide servers, networking and licensing issues, whilst also taking my first college class through UAS where I’m enrolled on a bachelor’s course, and tonight have been running Facebook and Skype through my iPhone. I own a truck and a boat, and my snowmobile came back home last night and work started on replacing the rear suspension assembly for the coming winter. I would never have believed I could have found myself living in such a situation.
My first political science class went really well and seems like it will be pretty interesting. I spent the rest of the evening working on my readings for next week. The first of my oceanography classes is Monday afternoon and I have some readings to do over the weekend for that.
I also finally got an iPhone up and running out here today 😀 It’s taken a lot of patience, but other than the same restrictions on any cellphone out here in Bethel with regards to lack of data coverage, it works great. There are a few apps I’ve installed such as Facebook, Tweetdeck, Skype and Shazam which are cool, and I have a friend coming in to town next week that am sure will point me in the direction of even more. It really is an awesome little device, and even things like text messages bring on a whole new meaning when it’s formatted like iChat conversations. Very happy with it!