Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Week of Aug 30-Sept 6

What a week this has been. Monday the Martin's rig was in the shop. while it was being worked on I spent several hours at the Nataive Heritage Center. These two young folks are demonstrating some of the events of the Eskimo Olympics. The girl will kick up, balancing on her left hand and kick the ball. The record by a male is eight feet, meaning that his body is vertical and hand off the floor, sorta an upside high jump.Here the young lady is perparing to kick the suspended ball with her left foot while holding her right foot and balancing on her left hand. Confused? They were so fast that I couldn't get good pictures. The games are to increase their strength and endurance.

The strangest was the ear pull, designed to increase tolerance to pain. A loop of rawhide is placed around the opponants opposite ears while they are sitting. Then both bull untill one lets the rope pull off. Like when your mom pulled on you ear to get you to behave, but much more painful.

These women are dressed in Kuspuks and wearing mukluk boots. They use dance fans of feathers to accent the mothions of thier dances. The drumers keep rhythum on flat seal skin drums while they chant. The map on the wall depicts the five major cultures in Alaska.
Alaska's Native people are divided into eleven distinct cultures with twenty-one different language.

This young man shows one of the Tlingit/Haida drums with the black, red and teal stylized designs. He waid that the teal color is from crushed copper rock with fish slime as a binder.
The designs are historic. He explained that American's distroyed maost of their masks, but some were taken to Russia and France.





This is a replica of a Tlingit/Haida community house. The door is an oval hole in a huge log.

This replica of an Alutic common house is similiar to to the homes of the Yupik, and Inupik cultures. Constructed partially underground the homes were well insulated.






The log house and food cache are representative of the Athabascan culture, and of settlers. Today many residents still live in log cabins and use caches to keep food from the bears. Wealthy Alaskan build wonderfully insulated "Log cabins" with triple paned panaramic windows.

Lynne joined me to travel down the Kenai to the Alaska Wildlife conservation Center. Here injured or orphaned animals are treated to be released.








I have too many animal pictures already but was impressed with this bull caribou.
One more moose picture. This huge bull will soon be in rut. His antlers are shedding the velvet. That yucky stuff hanging off his antlers is the velvet that he is rubbing off.




Dale's rig was repaired in record time. Bonnie and Charles joined us with their motor home for a quick trip down to Homer.

We camped overnight at Willowaw National Forest. Red Salmon were spawning in the shallow waters of the stream that ran through the campground. Later we stopped at the confluence of the Russian and Kenai Rivers where combat fishing for salon takes place when they are running.
The weather was cold and damp.


From the windows of the rigs we had view of glaciers and waterfalls. We were tempted to climb but the temperature and dampness and our mature bodies restricted us to walks around the almost deserted campground.

We arrived in Homer. Despite the could cover we enjoyed the distand mountains and glaciers. If the day had been clear, we would have been able to see Mt. Redoubt across Cook Inlet. It is still smoking but not erupting.

Passing through the small fishing and arts/crafts town, we drove onto the Homer Spit which divides the Kachemak Bay.
A crazy Alaskan blew up the front edge of his parasail and let the wind pull him on a surf board out into the bay.
Luckily he was wearing a wet suit.

Early the following morning I walked Sassie along the beach and was awed by this magnificent sunrise.


Near the end of the spit, Dale spotted this eagle working to repair it's nest.
Dale's binoculars let him identify sea otters on two floating mats of kelp. This guy was by himself. His head is to the left. Those are his feet to the right.


We hated to leave Homer without seeing the glaciers and volcanic mountains with clear skys. Of course as wwe returned to Anchorage, the skys cleared and the sunshone brilliantly.
Later this week we again helped Sharon and Henry in Wasilla prepare for winter by getting his snow blower attached to a small tractor and putting things under cover.
On Saturday, we returned to Anchorage for a trememdus stage production of the "Lion King". You have to see it to beleave it. Of course no photos were allowed.
Today we leave to return to Delta and winterize. Yes winter is coming. It was 41 the other morning.







































































































































1 comment:

LKHarris-Kolp said...

I love getting your blogs and pictures. If The Lion King production was anything like we saw at Disney World, then I know what you mean- fascinating!