Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Multiyear Ice

I understand the deal with this now. It is ice that has survived the summer melt for one or more years and built up layers. It hasn't necessarily come off a glacier.

I met some scientists who explained it all and said it's now very rare. There isn't much multiyear ice floating around any more. This is what the arctic used to be like. So this year is very unusual and I am very lucky to have seen it. Now most years you just get first year ice which is much thinner and is salt water because the salt hasn't drained out of it. The ice seems to be thinning every year. Polar bears like multiyear ice for denning in (making a hole and having cubs).

Feeling down

I haven't been feeling up to doing much recently. I have been feeling totally gutted about not being on the ice. It's an horrific wrench coming back to land. I can't imagine what impact not being able to go out would have on people here if they ever can't. The wind/current etc is all wrong at the moment. It might be better next week. But I am now over the moon cos I'm going geese hunting with Billy and Eli. We have to leave in the evening when the ground is frozen. I have been taken over by this place. It's impossible to be an observer and I have almost stopped gathering material which makes me feel a bit useless but gives me an tiny insight into how important the lifestyle is. Here is Jesley enjoying some Jersey toffees that big sis sent. He says thankyou!! And Julia says huge hello. She is going to hang the Jersey cow tea towel on the wall.

Saw 'track of the giant snow bear'. It's good. The baby polar bear (Pakka) is incredibly cute and it's about this bloke who carves and is a dreamer. The cub gets caught in his dad's trap and then becomes a pet. When it eats all the meat it gets banished from the village. Then another polar bear nearly eats someone and he hesitates in killing it because he thinks it might be Pakka. So he banishes himself and makes himself survive for a year on his own so he becomes a proper hunter and doesn't endanger people any more. The polar bear helps him out during that year and he learns to hunt etc. At the end the bear goes off and has cubs and isn't tame any more and he is a hunter/carver and lives happily ever after.