Sunday, February 17, 2013

There and Back Again

And might I say, it's nice to be home folks! Sorry for the lack of further updates from Kashechewan, the internet was spotty at best.

We left Moosonee on a heavy looking, cloudy afternoon, and drove along the ice road for about 2.5 hours. I was a little surprised at the ice road. In my head, I somehow thought it jogged out along the moose river, and then up the coast of James bay, travelling over open water the whole time. That thought scared the hell out of me. Turns out that's not the case at all. It's just a cut roadway up through the woods, that's too swampy and boggy when it's not frozen solid. There are a few places where the road crosses over a creek or a river, but for the most part you're driving along fairly solid ground. Whew.
The landscape was full of the same tall, skinny, top heavy "asparagus" trees that we saw on the train ride up...
And also of short, scrubby deciduous brush, liberally coated in some type of swamp moss. It's a little strange seeing black slimy swamp moss in the snow... I would never have guessed that the two images would go together. This is pretty much how it would look if a blizzard ever hit the everglades. Huh. Besides the swamp scrub and asparagus trees I also noticed the naked quivering frames of Tamarack trees. One of the few, if not only, conifers that sheds their needles in winter. That was about as diverse as the flora got, at least to my untrained eye. Sure there were also dogwoods and cattails poking through the snow in the marshy areas, but that's it for the diversity of trees. I guess not a whole lot survives this type of climate.
Our stay in Kashechewan made me appreciate how civil, and nice Moosonee is. For all that it's supposed to be a dry community, there are a TONNE of problems with alcohol abuse. There's a lot more vandalism, broken and boarded up windows are more common than intact ones, and nearly every other building or trailer is tagged with graffiti. I suppose the people are nice enough, but I never really left the base aside from a shopping trip. Oh yeah, and Sunday, the day we rolled into town, is the day when both the grocery store and the restaurant are closed. And we showed up around dinner time, not having packed anything or eaten since breakfast. Whoops! Luckily there was a corner store open, but it seems a little ludicrous to pay 7$ for a can of beef stew. Everything is more expensive up the coast. When Andrew goes back tomorrow, we'll be sending him up with some stuff from here.
The first week, I tagged along with my massage table and sheets hoping to get some clients. I got exactly 1. This week, I'm gonna stay behind here in Moosonee, where I know there are people waiting for my services.

No comments: