Being adopted

I really can't get over the people here.

It seems every day someone asks me to have dinner with them, or drive me home, or introduce me to people they know etc.
Yesterday the woman who had my job in Rankin a couple years ago, invited me to have dinner with her and a friend who also lived in Rankin... at this cute little restaurant shaped like an igloo.

Probably the BEST mozza burger I've ever had. So tasty.

And just now, another coworker, one that I felt I had trouble reading... (she is just more reserved than a lot of the others) just came over to my desk and invited me to her son's 3rd birthday party, so she can introduce me to people, and so I can try some traditional fish and caribou eats.

I'm actually really glad because I wanted to try caribou, but I was hesitant to cook it myself for the first time. I figured I'd mess it up horribly and then not like it, and miss out on what so many people say is just delicious.

Don't get me wrong. I loved working in Quebec City. The people there rocked my world. But it just feels like here, they are so ultra aware of the fact that I don't know anyone ... and go out of their way to help me out. I guess a lot of them have been through it before, or are used to having people just look so lost and pathetic, they can't help but feel bad haha.


First set of pictures!

Can be found here!

Ok, time to reveal your secrets!

Dear fellow northern bloggers.
I would like to see the Aurora, but I don't want to freeze my butt off on a night when they aren't active/energetic or whatever people say when they mean really vibrant.
Is there a website I can visit that will tell me this, or do I just go and look out my window? What time of night are they most visible?

*cricket sounds

It's very bizarre. Every now and then I'll get off the phone, and look around, and I'm the only one in the office.

It's like everyone's out having a party and forgot me!

Ok they are all back now, well most of them anyways, and they don't LOOK like they've recently been to a party. No streamers dangling from pockets or trailing from shoes. No hats, no face-paint. No cake-crumbs in the corner of their mouths. Looks like I didn't miss out on much. Wherever they all were.

It's only my second day here... (third if you count Tuesday, when I got the grand tour, and then headed to my new apartment for the rest of the day) but people here are really nice. Very friendly. Yesterday, one of my co-workers offered to take me grocery shopping after work (we're going today because I GOT PAID woot!) and then drove me home at the end of the day (a 4-minute drive, but a 20-minute walk). It was so nice.

I am definitely the youngest person in my office. But I don't think most people know how young I really am. The co-worker who is taking me grocery shopping was shocked when I told him I was just 22... and proceeded to remark that I'm "just a baby!" (everyone says that these days!!!) I guess it is kind of adventurous of me to have done this. And a bit rare to be staff at my age. Shrug!

On the way to work today, I went cross-eyed trying to get a decent look at what I thought was a whitehead on my lip... and then I went to tentatively poke at it and realized it was a piece of snow. It wasn't REALLY snowing this morning, but there were a couple lone flakes. I've yet to master the dressing for my walk to work. By the time I get all my gear on (which really isn't that much, just my "southern" winter jacket, over multiple shirts) I'm standing in my hallway overheated from the effort of putting on my hikers (in writing this I've now devised a new plan of putting on my boots first. God I'm smart). Then I get outside, and love the coolness of the air. Then I get about ten minutes into my walk, put up the hood, stick the hands in the pockets, but my body is way to warm. Sigh. I'm sure I'll get the hang of it eventually. Also, Iqaluit is quite hilly, and apparently Rankin is very flat. So I won't have to do as much hiking on the way to work thus minimizing the breaking a sweat.

Ah the intricacies of dressing for the North.



Turns out my crazy cat/crows are actually ravens!
Fitting, for a Carleton grad.
Though they are depicted as a much more graceful, sleek animal on our paraphernalia....
Maybe the Ontario squirrels are actually muskrats then! (Or Muskoxen?)

The eagle has landed!

Do we even have eagles up north? The only birds I've seen since I arrived yesterday are MASSIVE crows. Just when I think I've escaped the land of over-sized vermin (*ahem, Ontario squirrels)... along come Nunavutian (I KNOW that's not the right word to describe the Nunavut residents, but I can't remember how to spell it right now) crows the size of ... well... cats. Flying, black cats. Yikes.
So yes, I have arrived. And I will post some pictures in due time. At this point, I don't have internet from home ... I tried hooking up to a wireless signal ... but I couldn't get the "network address" ... so no dice.
I took this wild video of us landing in Iqaluit. You can really get a good feel for the style of housing, and the landscape. And it finishes off with a grand view of the BRIGHT YELLOW airport terminal. I had heard about it, but it still caught me by surprise.
It's interesting though, the landscape, the ground and the hills and the roads are all very... bland in colour. But the buildings, so many of them have a really distinct colour to them... or at least a bright blue, green, red etc. trim. All the houses are on stilts because of the permafrost... and Iqaluit is a really hilly town, so the stilts vary in length from one end of a house to another. I went for a walk yesterday, after I arrived and got mini-settled in my place, and saw this one house, set on a hill, anchored in the front, level to the land, and easily... twenty feet off the ground at the back, supported by metal stilts. 
Had my grocery shopping experience yesterday. It was about as bad as I expected... unfortunately the closest grocery store is about a 20-25 minute walk from my house, so I tried to hit up the convenience store next door first... and really struggled because I couldn't think what to eat... they had no meat, no produce (except for bananas). So I settled for pasta, sauce and cheese... and an $8 2L carton of milk. 
BUT then I headed down to the "real" grocery store... and found the strangest thing. Asparagus, fresh (and VERY TASTY) for $4. Now asparagus is generally REALLY pricey back home... so its funny to see it so reasonably priced up here. And cheese isn't that bad either. So I think I'll just cut out milk and get all my calcium from cheese. 
And my Vitamin C from Tang. 
I also died a little when my TWO largish-potatoes came to almost seven dollars. This is going to be the best diet ever. Only half-a-potato for supper for me! Haha, or at least till I get paid.  


Most rushed entry ever...

Ok, so my typing skills are being put to the test... I told myself I would catch a cab at 8:15... with the hopes of being at the airport at 8:45.... not sure what the traffic will be like etc... and my plane leaves at 9:50...

But I wanted to do a quick entry before I fly away... far far away...

I am so excited.

I actually woke up at 5:30 this morning, and couldn't get back to sleep because my entire body was pumping with excitement-driven adrenaline (even though the Crown Plaza has a "sleep system" including the most comfortable bed I've ever laid down in... smoothest, coziest duvet... relaxation CD, lavender sheet mist... the list goes on).

I can't believe I am doing this, I can't believe this is happening... I can't believe I am going to work tomorrow ... to be a NEWS reporter.

Yesterday was beautiful. A balmy 25 degrees. My hotel is located on Lyon Street, just off Wellington... but a very decent walk from the Rideau Centre/Market. But I walked down, and on the way (and way back) realized how much of Ottawa I had passed by in the four years I lived here. I just never walked anywhere, I always took OC Transpo. I had no idea what I had missed... which is a shame.

Ah well, I guess I'll just have to visit :)



Off to the races!

I really had to resist making the title of this entry "off to the (dog sled) races."

My Grandfather's influence is just becoming too much.

So tomorrow is the big day. I begin PART ONE of my multi-legged journey up north.

I've been packing most of the day, and I was actually really proud of myself because I had really got a good headstart on the process... probably one of my least favourite things to do in the world (close tie with UNPACKING, unfortunately). BUT the whole ordeal was made MUCH more fun because I'm a total gadget freak, and went crazy at Linens and Things, buying those vacuum-shrinkwrap bag thingies... (CHECK OUT THE HILARIOUS COMMERCIAL HERE!!) so I spent the morning sorting, the afternoon sucking, and now have two mostly-full suitcases, and a plethora of knick-knacks that will be thrown into my neatly packed baggage at the last minute...

Tomorrow I leave from Charlottetown, take a break in Montreal (gag me with a spoon. I hate the Montreal Trudeau airport. No seats, no food, no fun) for two hours, and then head to Ottawa where I spend the night.

Then Tuesday, I start the second leg... flying from Ottawa to Iqaluit via Canadian North... where I'll take another little break...

This one lasting about a month or so.

I am (thankfully) being eased into the whole living-up-north-working-for-CBC sort of thing. I'll be meeting, greeting, and getting familiar with how things work at the Iqaluit station for a few weeks before going down to Rankin.

It's a bit of a relief, to be honest. This is one of those situations where I'd MUCH rather dip my pinkie toe in the (freezing sub-zero, iceberg-y) ocean than cannonball right in.

But I also am reallllly looking forward to getting to Rankin. To check out my apartment, be reunited with all my worldly possessions...meet the folks I've been chronic-ly blogging with for the past month or so...

OOOoo AND try out my swanky dishwasher. Can't wait!!


Snazzy new blog!

Woot! Check it out! How do you like my snazzy new blog header? How more "jackie" can you get than a ladybug header?

Major kudos to Jen for her photoshop wizardry and stellar instructions for hooking me up. Now of COURSE I will be changing the background colour for weeks to come... it's like my constant room-rearranging when I was a kid. Never really got the Feng Shui down....

T-minus 6 days!


A note for all you northerners out there...


So... a coat update.

I bought (for real this time, I sold/gave away my other too-big Canada Goose jacket last week) my new parka.

It is the Canada Goose Solstice. I heart it. It is very pretty, and warm. Very warm. And expensive. VERY expensive.

I feel a little bit like the only store in PEI that sells Canada Goose gear may have ripped me off.

Here's where your nothernites come in.

How much do the Canada Goose parkas run up north? Mine (pictured below) cost me 580 + tax. Coming to a grandish total of 615.

Does it sound like I've been "had" (eh Mugsy?)?

I checked weaverdevore.ca ... but including the $50 shipping and tax.... I would only end up saving like 20 bucks.

Thoughts? Please any help is realllly appreciated!





Yes, I'm ADD... and I change the look of my blog several times a day. I will continue to do this until I am satisfied with what it looks like.

If anyone knows someone that can help me make it look pretty (I don't have photoshop and so I suck and can't do this myself) send 'em my way.


Grampie's Chevy and a pocketful of dreams

Pretty sure my parents are saints.

Writing from Edmonston, NB today. The Quality Inn just off the highway, to be precise. The rents and I drove from Quebec City laaate last night, checking into the hotel at about 3am....after an insane whirlwind of a day.

Why in the world I went to work yesterday is beyond me. My movers were going to arrive at 2. I had arranged to get off work at 12. Two hours, the perfect amount of time to sort things etc. But then the company calls me the day before and asks if they packers could come earlier to get things rolling. They were coming at 1230.

And of course I promised coworkers we'd do one last pizza run before leaving...

So the packers arrive on time, but I do not. My poor parents (still recovering from driving from PEI the day before...a mere 10 hrs) trying to direct them what was to go, what was to stay (without really having a clue)...

And I arrive panting, out of breath at my door at just after 1... totally discombobulated. And panicking because I don't know how the hell my life got to this point... and what I am supposed to do with 4 movers who are throwing (albeit gently) all my belongings into boxes.

It was chaos.

Anyways, they did their thing and were out the door in just three hours... (incredible, these people have super powers) but it wasn't until significantly later (we're talking 8) that we finally got on the road (me sans the gelato I had promised myself I was going to have prior to leaving).

Me. Mom. Dad. and Shamus (the guinea pig) elbow to elbow in Grampie's Chevy. Cozy is a nice way of describing it. But we made it. We hit the road again in an hour or so... en route to PEI. A small portion of my worldly belongings in the back of the Chevy and a pocketful of dreams.

Two thousand kilometers in three days. My parents rock.


Dreams come true.

This whole thing... it's insane.
Things have moved so fast.

Every time I think I'm going to be stuck without a job, something comes my way first Quebec... now this....

And every now and then, I'll be laying in bed, staring at the ceiling.... and it will hit me... that I actually have a career. I'm twenty-two... and I am on staff with CBC Radio. That's all I've ever wanted... and something I thought was so very out of reach, so impossible. I feel like I spent so much of my time at j-school feeling defeated before I even graduated.

I remember in J-4000 during one of the presentations, they asked who planned on going into PR, and I had my hand up before they even finished the question. Not because I didn't WANT to do journalism, but because I just didn't think I COULD. I wasn't one of those kids that had the amazing internship in third year. I didn't intern over the summers. I didn't write for the Charlatan. It kind of makes me think I don't deserve this... but I know that's not true, because I did work my butt off this summer. I am good at telling stories. I know that. It just seems too unreal haha.

I keep saying that this summer, working in Quebec City, is/was a dream come true. Now THIS has become my "NEW" dream come true... looks like I'm going to have to think up a new dream job... because it seems a bit silly to have accomplished "everything" at such a young age haha.

Maybe my next dream job will be closer to the family, to the friends. Where pop isn't outrageously priced, and I can get my hands on a good slice of pizza.

There, that's a reasonable... semi-unobtainable goal, right?




I swear, the store will be the death of me.
I really bought too much this weekend... but I have justified just about all of it... with the whole "really I'm SAVING money because things are so much more expensive up north..." mantra.

But now that I think about it... 150 loads worth of laundry detergent, and 180 loads worth of dishwasher gel packies now seems a tad excessive.

But ... "it was on sale" ... and rumour has it that a small box of Tide costs something like $40 bucks. Thank god for the Northern Living Allowance haha.

My jacket arrived on Friday, and of course, it was a million sizes too big for me. Cursed relative sizing. When I ordered an XL I was thinking of my Columbia ski jacket, which is an L womens... and so I figured it wouldn't be that big of a deal to go a size up (with the idea of wearing layers underneath...) but it looks like I actually am a Medium in Canada Goose sizing. So I begin the jacket-search yet again. Grr.

But on a happier note... I think someone from work is going to buy my jacket from me, so I won't really be out anything... and I bought my boots today. Put a nice little dent in my bank account balance (haha what balance??) but it's practical. I'll be walking 20 minutes to and from work every day, and I'm sure I'll be thankful when the weather gets cold.

Here's what 199+tax buys you in North Face boot-wear:


Bright and early...

Well things have really moved forward (officially anyhow...) in the past couple of days.

I finalized my contract, negotiated the move... and tomorrow morning at 8am I am playing hostess to the corporate moving company ... that's when they show up to evaluate/estimate my stuff.
I've not decided 100% yet, but I am pretty attached to my desk so I think I want to take that, and I've been talking with someone who moved up to Rankin around this time last year, in a similar situation... and she suggested that I bring lamps/storage... but that still leaves me at a loss of what to do with my bed and my couch... and my kitchen table/chairs.

My dream boots are a no-go... which is sad, because I don't think I'm going to bother chancing another shipment before I move... so I'll either have to buy them at full price here in Quebec, or full price PLUS in Iqualuit (man I have to learn how to spell that word...) when I'm up.

I'm not sure if I mentioned that. I'm doing like 3 mini-moves... I leave Quebec City next weekend (the 15th or so) for PEI, where I'll stay for a week and a bit, then I fly from PEI to Iqualuit, where I'll stay for three weeks or a month... and THEN I move (finally) to Rankin around mid-October I guess.

That seems REALLY far off, so it's hard to take it all seriously... but I really have to start sorting/doing laundry... because the first leg of moving, really isn't that far off. I'm glad I don't have to pack though... horray for corporate movers!!!



So props to Renee, for pointing out that I've been a total dunce and not really said anything about what my job actually is!

So I'll be taking up a post as the CBC North's staff reporter in Rankin Inlet. Which, to say the least, totally blows my mind. I am thrilled to actually have a "career" ... let alone doing the job I have always dreamed of doing... at the ripe old age of 22...

But don't even ASK how I got the job, because I don't even have a clue. I've not done news since third year j-school... and though I've had a crazy amount of experience this summer, getting out and flexing my french skills, my reporting skills, and my confidence levels... I haven't gone anywhere close to news, just sticking to the familiar (or rather, assigned) current affairs "beat."

But I guess I did something right :)


Brr. What have I gotten myself into???

A surge in spirits...

Amazing what a little online shopping/deal scoring can do for a girl's mood.

I saw these boots at a North Face store yesterday, fantastic fit, really durable, good for up to -40 degree weather (yes I'll need it... check out this table ug!) and they were going to cost $199 + tax. But I found them online for $89 shipping and tax included... all because they are last year's model.

Man I love people who feel the need to have the absolute latest-edition of the clothes I need. Just means I can afford to buy them!

Midnight sun, mid-day moon

So it's 7:52 and it's dark in Quebec City.

I am looking out my 4th-floor apartment window, with its classic view of the Price building and Chateau Frontenac... and I was thinking to myself how early it gets dark here, and then it hit me.

I can't imagine living in a place where darkness reins.
I've always, literally always, been a major sun-worshiper (without the cult-like status). I mean, let's be honest. I grew up on PEI, had unlimited access to beaches for four summers... was the most tan person I know.

How will I survive without the sun?

What a stupid little detail, but one I'm hung up on nonetheless. It's not as though I'm thinking Rankin Inlet would be the optimum place to get a tan, but... it'll just be strange I guess.

I hope its not as bad as I think.

Photo: winter daytime in Nunavut. Courtesy of
Jen's photobucket from