[C'est Jean qui parle] (in French because I'm listening to Les Chauds Lapins sing Ces Petites Choses. Very nice.)
Well, we've had our first taste of winter--just a little taste, though. The other morning the temperature was down to -19 degrees Celsius, with 55 km/hr winds bringing the wind chill to a -35 equivalent. And our hotel is up on a very windswept hill, making the first five minutes of the walk to the office (Lorraine's office, but I'm walking with her every day to make sure I get some fresh air and exercise before hunkering down in the hotel room to write) quite a challenge indeed.
The good news is that our MEC-purchased clothes worked fine, and we weren't even wearing the toughest of our cold-weather gear. I could see where it wouldn't take long for exposed skin to get frost bit, though.
Once we got away from the worst of the wind, my forehead and nose did recover. Lorraine was the smart one; she had a neck warmer she could pull up over her face. But of course, the scary thought is that it apparently will get a lot worse from here on in, till about March or April. Hope we get enough snow for skiing soon.
Today, though, it's a balmy -7, with -5 in the outlook for tomorrow. Almost feels like shorts and t-shirt weather to us now.
Meanwhile, I'm working on hooking up with musical opps, and it's looking pretty good. I'll be sitting in on a practice this Saturday afternoon with an Iqaluit band called The Road to Nowhere (named after the local road of the same apt name, since that's where it goes). They suggested trying Pennies from Heaven, I'll See You in My Dreams, and Taj Mahal's version of My Creole Belle, which suits me just fine.
I also went out last night to the high school next door to the hotel to try out for the local community choir. I didn't even have to try out, just "get over there and join the tenors," they told me. Which was a good thing, since if they had auditioned me, I would have been tossed out on my tin ear. I'm definitely in over my head, but that's okay, it means I'm learning a lot, and I'll just sing very quietly until, by Jove, I think I've got it.
Next stop will be the Community Music Ensemble on Thursday evening.
I suspect I was wrong about the wolf tracks, by the way--the ones I claimed in my first post from Iqaluit. There are, after all, a few big, wolf-like dogs running around loose, and it was probably one of those who left the tracks on the hill. Okay, so I got ahead of myself. Can't blame a guy for dreaming.
Meanwhile, we've also discovered the pretty good library in town, and good Chinese food at the Navigator Hotel (The Nav, to you), Lorraine's been to a meeting of the local bar association, and as noted, everyone is open and friendly. One potentially disturbing thing: it's very easy to meet fellow southerners, but so far it's proving a bit more difficult to connect with local Inuit people. Feels a bit like two solitudes, or a passage to India, or something along those lines. Hope I'm proved wrong on that first impression. Maybe I'm just too shy.
People here are also pretty shook up about the young RCMP officer who was shot and killed in the nearby (relatively speaking, of course) community of Kimmirut. Only 20 years old. I don't know what to say about it myself at this point, other than to acknowledge that it's very sad, for all concerned.