Thursday, April 29, 2021


      I was scanning some slides today that reminded me of transportation or lack of it in the north. 

      As you know I spent two years in a very isolated northern settlement called Wakeham Bay  which is now known as Kangiqsujuaq. The population was approximately 200 people 

      At the time I was there from 1967 to 69 transportation was almost nil. The nearest road was more than 500 miles away. There was no airstrip and there was no dock for ships to unload.

      All freight was  brought in by ship. The Hudson Bay Co would charter a ship to bring in all their trading supplies. The ship would anchor in the bay about a mile off shore. Freight was loaded into small powered barges . These little barges could move up to the beach. Then all freight was taken off by hand. Most trading posts were built on the beach so their warehouse was not far from the beach where the freight was dropped, 

All people in the settlement pitched in to unload the supplies. You can see two women carrying a 100 lb bag of flour.

    Now this system was not as simple as it looks.

    The commerce was all trade. These trading posts used very little cash. It was all trade. 

     I think there was roughly $200.00 in cash in the community. It was used to play poker. 

    So If a hunter or trapper wanted to go out he would go to the store to get supplies . He may want gun shells, flour, baking powder, lard and tea. He would be given the supplies on credit. When he came back he would trade his skins and pay off his debt.

    The people knew what they were doing when the volunteered to unload the ship. They knew that this labor might make it easier at times to get credit.



Tuesday, April 27, 2021



       I used this photo in my last post. I haven't forgotten that I used it. 

      Today I have another reason for showing this photo.

       This photo illustrates one of the negative aspects of society What does this photo tell us?

       So take a look at what this photo may say. Let's hear some opinions . Maybe we could get an argument going here!

Saturday, April 24, 2021


      This photo is just before the airplane came in to take us south.  Our baggage was on the G - 5 . 

    This was July 22 and I'm wearing a light winter jacket. I'm also wearing rubber boots. Most of the ground was soggy and wet. You couldn't wear ordinary shoes. 

      We had been at Wakeham Bay for two very busy years. I was teacher, principal and Local administrator. The principal position was a joke as there was only one other teacher. The teaching load was challenging as these kids had only been in school for five years . The Local administrator position paid the handsome salary of $1000.00 per year. Sometimes I worked on administration as much as teaching. 

     I had to account to the government for every dime I spent. I could write checks for $2000.00 per month for soapstone carvings. I gave out social assistance . Did I  say  correspondence? Lots of it.

     We did not have a post office. A bag or bags of mail would come in on the odd

airplane if somebody remembered to put it on. I would have to go through correspondence. 

    The Inuit didn't send out letters or receive letters. But some of them did some work at the mine and as a result had to pay income tax. They would get T4 slips. They knew that the would get money from T4 slips and would come up to me. I would fill out their income tax forms. 

   So here I am just a few hours before leaving, still working. I was distributing the family allowance checks. Family allowance is a system where mothers are paid so much for each child. It was one of my jobs to give them their checks. 

   I also had to sort out some mysteries. For most of the two years I would get a letter asking about the whereabouts of a certain child. At first I had no idea who the parents might be. The Govt. was paying family allowance for this kid. Finally I was talking to a family one day about this issue and they talked amongst themselves. I could understand what they were saying. It was their child. Apparently the child's birth was registered but the child died shortly after.  This had happened on an island off the coast. 

     So because I enjoyed all this work it was a sad time to leave.

    It was July 22 and teachers could have been gone for three weeks. I enjoyed the work and wanted to help the people as much as I could.

Thursday, April 22, 2021


       It was discovered a few days ago that one of the drapery cords was almost worn out. So simple. Get some drapery cord and replace it. 

       First, you have to get some new cord so we started phoning. We were amazed that we had to phone for about 2 hours to find one place with drapery cord. We looked at that cord and decided that it wasn't suitable. Off to Canadian Tire where they sell rope and cord by the foot. We'd phoned them before and they didn't have drapery cord . We found cord that was the right size and looked suitable. So the guys who said they didn't have cord had cord. 

     Okay, today was a nice day  to change the cord. We'd done this before but maybe long ago. So we first looked at how the cord is strung so that we know how to string the new one through. Then we pull the old one out. So far so good. 

Then we start feeding the new cord through. It was tricky and hard to string the cord through some parts. We got to the last loop and said we'll never get this . Then the oops moment hit. Get a small piece of wire and pull the cord through. We could have done this before on all the hard spots.

     So we had the two lines of cord inside the rail. We had to attach the cord on the anchors in the right place . Okay that's done. Then we measured.  Oops! We thought the rail was longer. We checked with the wall. Yes, the rod had to be longer. The rod had been accidentally pushed together while we were working with the cord.

     Well, you know all the things that could go wrong did go wrong.

     We finally got everything adjusted. We put the railing back up and then hung the drapes. 

       There went one whole afternoon!

Sunday, April 18, 2021


     In 2011 I bumbled into a blog called Out of My Multiple Minds. The title caught my attention. It sounded like a topic I'd be interested in. It was not about multiple minds  but it was a fascinating blog to follow. It was also a blog that influenced my life.

     I think I found Out of My Multiple Minds  on DJan's blog and the blogger Pete turned out to be DJan's brother in law. 

     I found that Pete had a well written and lively blog. 

     Soon I found out that Pete was very ill but he was full of energy and intensely curious. 

     Shortly after I was saddened to find out that Pete was dying. 

     I followed Pete for about 3 months as he courageously journaled the end of his life. Pete blogged until a few days before his death. He dictated the last couple of posts as he was too ill to do the typing. His wife or daughter wrote a couple of final posts. The blog has been since taken down. 

      So on my own blog I wrote a post entitled Polar Bears in My House. This caught Pete's attention and he wanted to know all about the polar bears.  Most of all he wanted to see a photo. I had said that I would try to get photos. However, you know the story...the slides were not scanned and at that time I didn't know how to scan slides. If you read the post you will see Pete's of two comments I got. 

     Well, I'm scanning slides and the first ones I scanned were of the little polar bears that had been in my house. So because I'd promised Pete the photos , here they  are. 

        I do not have photos of the bears in my house . These were taken in the hunter's house. 

    The Inuit hunters shot the mother bear and then found out that she had cubs. They brought the cubs into me as they wanted money for the cubs. I was the local administrator for the federal govt. I couldn't give them money but did alert authorities that the bears were here. 

Saturday, April 17, 2021


      Somehow or other my kids loved to play outdoors in the winter. They could make up their own activities all based around snow. They had sleds. They also went to a nearby playground and played with other kids. They started this a preschoolers. 

      On a cold day I could recognize my kids from a distance. One had a round red puffy face in the cold. The other ones dark features showed up against the snow. 

     One of my favorite photos of the kids is one day when they had been outside playing. Their great smiles showed that they were enjoying themselves. 

Thursday, April 15, 2021


       If you couldn't love this little peanut, there would be something wrong with you.


Monday, April 12, 2021


       As you know I'm on a project to scan my old slides. 

      So far it's going well. It's a learning process. Many of the slides were of poor quality but anything that was a decent slide is worth having. 

       So in doing the slides we often say, "I don't remember that!" Sometimes we just burst out laughing at what we see. 

       I will use two slides to bring an event together. I've written about the adoption of our son. 

      We had to go a hundred miles away . Somehow things got late and we were leaving the city about 5 in the winter evening darkness. The Micro Manger soon found out that Babe needed some food. What would we do?  Most things were closed by that time.

      We found a recreational dealer ship that was open and popped in to see if we could heat some milk. Yes, we were more than welcome and they were happy to hear our story

     By the time Babe was  fed we'd made a deal to by a travel trailer. So we always joke about getting a new son and travel trailer on the same day. 

      So to show you some slides here's the trailer and the young camper. 

I wrote in more detail about the adoption process in a previous post

Saturday, April 10, 2021



     So you wanted to know about slides? Here's an excellent example showing a handsome dude!

     The scan is fairly close to the slide .

     This slide is 50 years old. It's hard to believe that I looked this young at one time. 

Tuesday, April 6, 2021


       I've finally made a decision on what I'm doing with my slides. 

       In the 60's and 70's and more the 35 mm camera was the best technology at the time. 

       So in 1963 I bought my first camera a 35 mm. I forget the model but it as the low end and was all automatic. As I said it's the first camera I owned. To say the least I didn't know anything about photography

     1963 was the year I left for the arctic and I sensed that I should have more than a decent camera.

      At that time , having to pay for film and development one was careful about how many photos you took.

    My photos have been sitting in trays for about 40 years. I haven't looked at them.

    Then I married the Micro Manager and she had a better 35 mm camera. 

     Between the two of us we have quite a few slides. 

     I sold my 35 mm to one of the Inuit.

    I've been dithering more than two years on how to change my slides to digital. I've looked into things and tried things. All the things I tried were terrible and were not satisfactory.  I didn't want to buy a scanner and find out results were poor. I had tried a scanner about 7 years ago and the results were terrible because of the operating system I was using.

     What did I find out that worked. I use the projector and take a photo of the image on the wall. It turns out to be just about the same quality as the original slide.

    So here we go! Wish me luck!

Thursday, April 1, 2021


       Well, my last post wasn't really a complaint. Just a little whining!

       Today I would like to register a formal complaint to those who hate seniors. 

       I consider myself to be very fortunate as a senior, in that I have very good health. That doesn't mean that I don't have some senior issues.

       In the last year I have noticed some vision problems.

       Yes, if you see an old guy on his hands and knees, trying to look at a price tag, that will be me! Yes, the price tag is just above my toes. I can back up to the other side of the aisle to get a better angle but that doesn't help. 

       Now you have to read price tags very carefully. So  sale price is large and in color. It's a super good price. But you have to see that to get the super price you have to buy two. Who wants two containers of Beef in a mug?

       The next problem is the price tag on the top shelf. The price tags automatically angle upward. So unless you're seven feet tall, all you see its the bottom of the price tag. While I'm at this one I feel sorry for shorter people who cannot reach anything on the top shelf. I have had to step on the bottom shelf to reach something on the top shelf. 

        After that, much of the information on the price tag is in very small printing. Shall I embarrass the Micro Manager and not only kneel on the floor but bring out my magnifying glass? 

      So while our grocery stores may have some things for the convenience of shoppers , they have some glaring challenges for people. 

     Now on the other hand, grocery stores have things slanted to their advantage. They don't want you to see that you have to buy two to get the low price. If you buy one they make a dump truck more money because the one price is much higher. 

     So there should be much more consideration given to seniors when it comes to making things easier. 

     What improvements would you like to see?