Friday, April 23, 2010

Make a Joyful Noise

Some days there won't be a song in your heart. Sing anyway.
~Emory Austin
"Hoooooolyyyyyyyyy, SO MANY ALLAANEQS THERE ARE HERE!!!" howled Nina as we were quickly scanning the unusually busy store this afternoon. She had noticed the first obvious large wave of 'out of towners' in village this weekend for the annual Singspiration at the church. This is about the biggest deal we have in Quinhagak, even bigger than the basketball tournaments I'm told. Never do we have so many allaaneqs, 'out of towners' in town than this weekend. Hence Nina taking note, then announcing the obvious to everyone in the store. Of course I had no idea what "allaaneqs" were at that moment. This was again another instance, like the other million times before it, when knowing Yupik would have come in real handy, you know. Ugh, if only my brain would absorb it, or if it were even a little bit like Spanish. Alas it is not, I could only guess it meant something bad by the frowning response I got from a few bystanders who likely assumed she was directing whatever the 'bad' word was at them. I'm sure I turned 3 shades of red as I again sported my sheepish albeit apologetic (store) smile then tried to blend in with these alleged 'allaaneqs' whatever they were and act as if Nina wasn't with me. Seriously every time I go to the store it's a new episode of 'How Dumb Can Rachel Seem', eventually you call a spade a spade, yah, yah I know, I know. Deciding against making a purchase and waiting in the eternal line while Nina ridiculed these poor people, I made an escape with her directly in tow. "What does that mean??? What are you calling these people?" I pleaded with her once out the door and headed toward my house as she yelped it out again so everyone in a 50 yard radius could hear her. "You know, so many different people there are here. So different they are." "Okay??" I shrugged, can't argue with that, lots of new faces. "But if you are going to yell out names at them, you could at least smile and wave while you are at it, you know, to seem nice and kind." "Sure." she agreed nonchalantly as she pointed out more allaaneqs, flashed her 6 year old toothless grin... and hollered "Hello! Allaaneqs!" I smiled and waved too.

My first seal:) My friend Jerilyn's hubby and cousin had a successful seal hunt today. They were busy harvesting all it: the fur, meat and fat (for seal oil) when Jerilyn offered to let me tag along to check it out. I hadn't seen a seal yet and honestly didn't know if anyone really hunted them around Quin, as you can see they do (Sorry if anyone out there can't handle this. Here it is part of life and has been since the beginning of time so please be understanding). I love to hunt myself and understand the beauty and hard work involved in substance living. As I have said before I am continually amazing at harvesting that takes place in Quin, everything gets used and bartered with to be sure everyone has what they need. Just the other day I traded my friend Grace some wild rice from back home for salmon strips she had dried. Anyway the guys were happy to let me snap a few pics and poke around asking what, I'm sure they thought were ridiculous yet typical 'cossack' questions. After admitting I'd never tried seal meat her cousin very generously offered me a backstrap!! For real I asked??? Hello that's like a prime cut, you don't just give someone a backstrap. I accepted excitedly and couldn't wait to run home to marinade it in what's left of my teriake sauce. I'm super anxious to try it. They all agree there is nothing you can compare it to so I need to see if I'm a seal fan. Stay tuned.

Seconds. One man's junk is another man's treasure. Yesterday I inherited Milt and Niki's old recliner! The kids and I love it! Thanks Hootons!

Yes, the spring air has again been wrestled to the ground by winter. It is snowing this evening. name it, we attempted to bake it tonight at my house. Women's bible study bake sale at the school tomorrow 4-6 or until items are gone. We are trying to off set the costs of books and study materials. So we'll see how we fare:)

Despite our best efforts it seems we all eventually become... our mothers. My friend from Bethel stayed with me yesterday since she had work in Quin. She jumped at the chance to 'walk' down to the beach that evening with Ani and I, never having been to Quin before. I had the brilliant/very 'my mother-esq' idea that we should take the 'tundra' back. Well I had my xtra tufs and she had...short snow boots...we made it halfway across and were blocked by a new melting stream, we didn't turn around. I fear she found herself in for more than she had expected, lol. I won't even get into the whole shenanigan but for those of you who encountered one of Mum's famous 'BogWalks' back on the farm. Yeah, enough said. Sorry, April, lol.

"Shout for joy to the LORD, all the earth,
burst into jubilant song with music;"
Psalm 98:4

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