If you ever consider visiting Resolute, or any other place in the close vicinity for that matter, be sure to make contact with Aziz Kheraj, known all over Nunavut as Ozzi!
Aziz originated from Tanzania, is married to an Inuit Polar bear hunting guide and has resided in Resolute for 32 years – he has a very talented daughter too. More than that, it would seem that Aziz’s entrepreneurial spirit has had a BIG influence on how business is done in Resolute, he owns the “South Camp Inn”, this is where we stayed and I would not hesitate to recommend it to others, has the cleaning contract for the “Northern Inn”, supplies fuel at the airport, has building contracts, stuff like that – and oh yes, was once the Mayor of Resolute.
Of much greater consequence however, Aziz is a very nice guy who helps you any way he can. I made contact with him last winter during the planning stages of this trip and made arrangements with him for fuelling GDOV at Resolute and Eureka. Without that the trip would not have been possible.
Anyhow, Aziz greeted us at Resolute airport and after we had secured the plane, anchored it to the gravel with our “claw” that is, he drove us to the “South Camp Inn” where, upon arrival, he invited us to choose two of the empty rooms upstairs and check ourselves in, which we did.
The drive from the "airport" to Resolute
It just so happened that we arrived just in time for the Resolute Canada Day Parade which was going to assemble down at the waters edge (..still hard to grasp the fact that it is the Arctic Ocean!) so off Jacques and I went heading in the direction that Aziz had told us to go. Not that any place is far to go in Resolute.
Jacques checking out the ice - it's melting
NOTE: Temperature today 14C!!! — That’s PLUS (+) fourteen degrees Celsius!!
Looking back at Resolute from the Bay
Can you see the team of huskies?
Here comes the Canada Day Parade
In amongst the rocks is plant life
OK, name this plant :)
It is amazing to see plants growing out of what would seem to be a barren assortments of rocks, but if you look where you tread you will be sure to see them all around.
The leader of the Canada Day Parade in Resolute arrives - the fire truck loaded with happy kids!
Happy Inuit children - so easy to please!
The kids tumble off the fire truck to join the Canada Day Celebration
Watching the Inuit residents of Resolute Bay fly the Canadian flag, and looking so happy, left me wondering what it is they had to rejoice. Now please do not get me wrong, I am proud to be Canadian and love our country, but knowing how these people were treated by our Government does not sit very well with me. Maybe I should study the history some more but as I understand it I was watching the descendants of families moved from their homes in northern Quebec to a place that was uninhabited, in the name of establishing Canadian sovereignty in the region. And to think this happened as recently as 1952.
There are no trees in this neck of the rocks so an improvised wind breaker was put together from, presumerably, an old shipping crate.
An Inuit mother, with one of her children carried on her back, head for the nearby river
Many of the children head to the river to what is presumerably a normal practice this time of the year
Yep, something must be going on down at the river -- something like our New Years Polar Bear dip?
Inuit kids are oh soi cute -- and this one is not so sure about the dip :0)
Now that must feel cold - even for an Inuit!
This little tot is heading back to the party wind breaker
....but not all are ready to leave the river
It's party time!
I felt privileged, in a way, to have been able to observe and take pictures of this gathering of Inuit people. We had lots of smiles sent our way by the children, and the adults where very friendly too, but somehow you could feel their indifference towards you and just knew you did not belong. Having said that, we did have the opportunity to talk with some of them in a different setting and it was evident that they had a great sense of humour, a sense of humour that reflected knowing that we would have a tough time just to survive in their environment, a sense of humour that poked fun at us in their stories. What they may not have realised is that we knew they were doing it.
Tending a team of huskies
We chatted with a fellow who worked at the Resolute airport, his Japanes wife is shown in the picture, and he told us that he and his wife are looking after a team of huskies for a Japanese adventurer who will be traveling from Greenland to Alaska, alone. The team of huskies in the picture will be shipped to Greenland in the winter to meet up with him – oh boy, his life will depend on these huskies!
The team of huskies (13 in this team) are kept apart by tethering them to a chain that is spread out and anchored to the ground.
Now this is the real thing - a working husky dog
Much stronger than they look
I had heard stories about how dangerous huskies can be but was reassured that you will not come across a mean husky because if they showed that trait they would be shot!!
Looks like this fella was late for the parade - quite the set up! :)
Be careful where you tread or you might destroy something beautiful that barely hangs onto life
This bike has seen better days ;)
The Resolute Fire Truck can now return to standby status
Norm waiting for the tide to come in?
Photo op :)
The South Camp Inn
Resolute RCMP headquarters
Now you know how to spell STOP in Inuit
Hide stretching Inuit style
Our chef at the Inn - and a mighty fine chef at that
Wanna box with me?
As you can see, I'm just a cuddly teddy bear at heart
No wonder my mind needed to be unravelled after getting back home from this trip – this is just the third day – and only two nights since leaving Echo Valley Ranch – and oh so many experiences!! Tomorrow we plan to head for Eureka, weather is looking great for the flight so it will soon be time to move on again.