Saturday, March 12, 2011

Twenty two years

The birthday weekend begins. I have Saturdays off and I managed to take Sunday off as well this week. I am thrilled to have an actual weekend off, two consecutive days. Down south I would have put on some heels, gone heavy on the makeup and hopped between loud, local bars. This year I will celebrate Iqaluit style. I will trade in my stilettos for winter boots and loud local bars for one with a last call at midnight. The plan is to grab a few drinks at the Store House, located inside the Frobisher hotel, with a few friends. Tomorrow, since my birthday landed on a Sunday I wanted to experience the Frobs famous brunch, so we have reservations at eleven for ten people.

March 13th is a special day that I share with my Grandma, Jean. I was her first grandchild and I was born early, on her birthday. I miss her just thinking about it. I may just make my very first phone call out of Iqaluit to wish Grams a happy birthday. (In case you're reading this Grams, I love you and I hope your birthday is fantastic, enjoy the mandarin {eat extra chicken balls on my behalf} and know that I am thinking about you. All my love)

It will be a fairly quiet weekend. I am excited for the big twenty two, I feel like the years have flown by much too fast and it has given me some perspective on enjoying what I have, while I have it. With Matt leaving for the South at the end of the month, almost all of my twenty-second year will be spent on my own in Nunavut. The terror of it is fading slowly and I have developed a feeling of wonder, I wonder if this is an opportunity for me. I'm not sure what it will bring or how I will deal with the highs and lows but I am taking it on as a welcome challenge.

My friends in Iqaluit have proven to be an incredible support system. Even the store management team have provided shoulders to cry on and ears to listen. My friends and family in Ontario have also been there for me the best that they could be via Internet and text message. Through all of the advice and well wishes, I have found a much clearer mind. This is what is best.

Iqaluit is preparing to welcome spring. Which is something I am really excited about. The sun is staying out later and later everyday. Soon darkness will not exist here and it will look like a completely different city. I wont have to be afraid to walk to work in the dark every morning.

I saw the Northern Lights last night when Robert dropped me off from work. I stood over the railing in front of our building and watched them in admiration, knowing that I wont be able to see them much longer.

To welcome spring properly, Iqaluit throws a celebration called Toonik Tyme, which I believe is set to begin on April 14th. It has been a community tradition since 1965. Travellers come here solely to experience this festival and all of the cultural exploration it allows. For a week there is a set schedule for activities like igloo building, seal skinning, dog sled and snow mobile races, scavenger hunts and craft fairs.

The last couple of days have been fairly warm and snow has been falling sporadically. Yesterday we sat at negative fifteen, I thought it would be a warming trend until I looked at this mornings temperature of negative thirty. To be honest, I'm not sure I want the cold to go anywhere. I like it.

To conclude this blog post, I would like to point out that there are only 99 days until my feet touch the earth in Toronto. My heart skips a beat just thinking about it. 99 days to warm sunshine, to shwarma, to a pedicure and a hair cut. 99 days until I am in the arms of my family and friends, until I get to see faces and hear voices of people I am longing to be close to. 99 days. I got 99 problems but vacation ain't one.


Melodie said...

I like reading your blog! Enjoy your time in Iqaluit!

I also admire you for the single reason that you like the cold. WOW! Never in my life can I like the cold. O well, you would probably hate the climate that I like best.

Anonymous said...

Happy (belated) 22nd Birthday. I just spent my first birthday in the north this past December. It was weird being away from family and friends but I had my wife and two cats so that was all I needed. I'm glad you're enjoying it up here. People keep asking me why did I follow my wife up here and I keep telling them why not? It's awesome, eh?

Stay in touch. Us new jacks have to stick together. Cheers!