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Sunday, September 14, 2008

Golovin to Gambell to ...NY?


Upon returning from Gambell this afternoon I couldn't help but wonder about our upcoming trip to NY. The contrast of kayaking back along the lonely cliffs from Golovin earlier this week to traveling to Gambell for a clinic (and Sarah's youth guitar teaching), then to Nome is manageable. But NY awaits later this week. It will be quite the culture shock and of all the things I do I can't quite grasp why this seems more stressful. Maybe I have become Nomenized. The longer I stay in this region the weirder it is when I see the lower 48.

Gambell as always, was a great experience. I had clinic for a few days and then Sarah and Hahnah joined me on Fri. Sarah was teaching some of the Gambell youth guitar and a friend, Laura from KNOM radio, came too to do a story on it.

The weather was sunny but windy and we had a nice walk along the beach on Saturday. The surf and shoreline reminded me of kayaking up north around Point Hope (everything at some point will remind me of some kayaking trip). The St. Lawrence Island is smack in the middle of the Bering Sea so it is fairly routine to see intense wind, weather and extremes on this island. It never fails to amaze me the seamanship of the whaling crews and hunting in some of these conditions. I have been fortunate enough to witness when a 50+ft bowhead is brought to shore- that's basically 50 tons. In our post-modern-computerized-economy based-secluded-yet-connected era it is astonishing to see an event that is completely reliant upon the whole community. Together they work in a consolidated effort in a very specific hierarchy of roles. Sometimes it can be well over 24 hours straight until every last scrap of meat, blubber or insides are designated for food. But I digress.

Photo of Sarah and Hahnah on the Gambell beach.


Sarah took this pic from last weekend at the Train to Nowhere. I was waiting to be picked up from the kayak trip.



Muskox and blueberries also from last weekend.


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