Monday, July 23, 2012

Photos lately

For all my world-class whinging, I truly have been fabulous places this summer.  Places that facilitated campfires early into the northern twilight, places that have yielded estimated 8-10 pound lake and bull trout, places more spooky than graveyards, places that unite and segregate simultaneously.  

It's a beguiling sensation to be places surrounded by people yet feel so isolated.  In such close physical proximity to one another with none of the intimacy or expected closeness.  

The woods truly are an unforgiving place for contemplating losses and longings.  

Munching moose

                                      Red Columbine                                                 Toilet bowl cleaner

 Usilika Lake

 Yup, I work here

 Oh, here too

 Even here



Boreal buddy

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Mackenzie, vol II

The super team strikes again.  While pleased to be leaving Mackenzie earlier than projected (exactly on time by our 10 day shift standards) I was bummed that meant our shift wouldn't reset with some weekends off.

Lack of weekends off with friends gifted the coveted Saturday and Sunday off accompanied by raised eyebrow decisions, frustratingly long hours, swarms of mozzies invading our trailer and more-than-expected time away from Chetwynd is souring my summer and raising urgent personal questions about future summer employment plans.  I don't live here in the home owning sense yet I'm constantly homesick for it.

It's a classic case of wanting what I don't have.  I love not having a fixed address that I pay for in any real or imagined sense, having post sent to a work address or the box of wherever I happen to be resting my head lately.  The freedom to move around at my leisure/where my wallet demands I go to fill it coupled with the desire to (temporarily) settle.

Fellow wanderer Jen maintains the home is where her feet are.  I'm tempted to agree.  Out in the bush, let's go home means let's go back to our trailers in the moz breeding depression.  When hitching up those trailers, home is Jaana's house in Chetwynd.  Returning from an international foray, home is Calgary where I tend to fly back to and have smiling family that picks me up on delayed flights from the airport. Home has been Edmonton, Red Deer, Meekatharra, Bimini, a beach hut in half a dozen countries. I continue to wrestle with this reoccurring theme of who, what and, less importantly, where home is.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Fleur de Peace

It's odd to pack my bag and be displeased about the destination.

As I prepare for another foray to Mackenzie, I'm disappointed to be leaving Chetwynd at the height of summer.  Teachers friends are off school, wildflowers are doing their thing, late days call for lingering, the rivers are clearing up and I'm off to bushcamp under the guise of making money

I continue to confront "what the H am I doing with myself?" whether on a recent heli show, up the reservoir days and days from Mackenzie or seated in my backyard enjoying a novel.  While I wait for a lightening bolt moment and not overly concerned to be questioning my life's path, meaning, meandering journeys, I've taken to enjoying those who do this every year - the flowers.

  This one is new to me.  

                                                  Poisonous                                           Pokey

A personal and perennial favourite

I adore this flowering arrangement

 Such delicate flowers

 More often seen as an ornamental than in the frorest

Waiting for our pickup, it rained, sunned and I found these rain drenched gems

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Trout trials

Trout are tricky, Dan, Warren and I learned yesterday as we tried our luck at Heart and Azouzetta Lakes in the Pine Le Moray Provincial Park.

After a botched attempt with all three of us in the canoe that almost had us swimming fully clothed alongside the children, Warren and I paddled off leaving Dan to try his luck with his fly rod from shore.
Popular with day trippers and long weekend campers, Heart Lake was crowded by northern lake standards as children searched for shoreline frogs, fished from sinking docks and floated on tubes while the adults wisely stayed out of the chilly lake in favour of the lakeside picnic tables.

 Skunked there even after seeing a wee fry, we lunched, packed up and moved on to Azouetta.  A private lodge dominates the lake and restricts access.  We managed to find a Civic sized launch.

Learning our lesson that the Clipper has a weight/occupant restriction at Heart Lake, Dan and I had first go.

Flanked by stunning mountains and sandwiched between the highway and railline, it was gorgeous but hardly peaceful as transports and cargo laden railcars plodded past.

Tempting us with their acrobatics, the trout continued to elude us as we eventually accepted defeat and vowed to return another day.

Wondering where the fishies are

 Ahh, Azouetta

Stern man Dan 

 The Clipper precariously balanced on a dodgy launch

 Dan and Warren returning