Where on Earth would you find a school that closes due to wind? In the tundra, of course. Today we have a late start and possibly a no-kids days due to excessive wind. I say no-kids day because the teachers are still required to be at school. It's kind of a nice break to just be at school and to get all caught up on work. Not much time for it usually. The wind is pretty incredible. I was lying in bed last night and could feel the whole house shake from the power of it. While I was walking to work, it hardly took any effort to move because the wind was pushing me so hard.
The whole reason why the wind is such a big deal is that all the students need to walk to school and some live on the very edges of the village. We don't have a bus currently since we have no driver. There always seems to be things that pop up that keep reminding me of where I am.
Sunday, December 14, 2008
Friday and Saturday were the first games of the season for both girl's and boy's basketball. Sports up on the slope are quite the event. It requires a chartered flight, lots of food preparation, trying to sort out where people will sleep, and also the typically assistance of staff members to make everything go smoothly. Because of each village's location, there is a lot of effort involved. When an opposing team comes for a game, it turns into a weekend long event. They will play until they leave the next day. This is a great opportunity for the kids and it really makes them work even harder so they can participate. Those who are eligible to play must have a C average through all of their classes and grade checks are done religiously.
These kids can play ball. I've never seen anything like it. I'm not just talking about in games either. During our gym time, kids will play Bump and be making these wild shots like it was nothing. When you don't have much else to do, it makes total sense that they can play the way they do.
I've spent my last weekend up here in the arctic baking cookies like a fiend and attempting to clean out my fridge. I'm now just down to condiments and have been making up some wacky concoctions for dinners. Nothing better than cheese, crackers, muffins, and scrambled eggs. I did attempt to have some of my students over for a baking party but no one showed so I ended up baking by myself. Now that the kitchen table is hidden I can finally take a break. Only 6 more days and I'll be on a plane!!!!
Monday, December 1, 2008
For Thanksgiving this year, I was able to escape for a much needed break. Neal, my boyfriend who lives in Minnesota, flew up to meet me in Anchorage. It was wonderful. We traveled up to Wasilla from Anchorage in a rental car. No, Sarah was not home, but we had just as much fun eating out and shopping at Target without a Palin sighting. I even was able to go to a movie at a theater for the first time in months. It was fantastic.
The weather was beautiful. On Friday, we drove up a mountain towards some ski resort and on the way we pulled over to take pictures of Mount McKinnley. The sun was shining perfectly on it. It was definitely worth the little drive and scary ascent up the side of an icy mountain. The descent was much scarier though.
After our travels, we went out to eat a pretty upscale restaurant in Anchorage, called Simon and Seafort's. This was probably the best food I've had in a really long time. The bill was $70 for the both of us, but worth every penny.
The weekend was great, but like all things good, went way too fast. It also made me experience the thrills of traveling in the great North. The plane both ways was over an hour late, also experiencing mechanical difficulties, and addition to that fun, I traveled over most of Alaska for all the stops it made. I did make it home safe and sound and I'm thankful for that. 3 more weeks until Christmas!