I've officially been in Scammon Bay for three weeks and in Alaska for a month. I can't believe it's been that long, it feels like just yesterday I hugged my dad goodbye at the airport and ran through security to keep myself from changing my mind and taking the bus back to the comforts of home.
In one month in Alaska I can honestly say that I have done more new things than I did in an entire year in Colorado (though, to be fair, when you live in the same state your entire life you run out of new and exciting things to do). This month I've gone berry picking with some of the local elementary kids and teachers, seen beluga whales swim into the Kun river, cooked and eaten a moose, lynx, and the aforementioned beluga whale, taken my own trash to the dump on foot, by truck and by 4-wheeler, distilled all of our water to make it safe for drinking, and learned more key phrases in Yup'ik.
I'm thankfully also settling in a little more at school. After two weeks of classes I'm finally able to put my students' names with their faces, tell you a little bit about them and, even though I am a "strict" teacher, they will say hi to me when I walk into town to go to the post office or store.
We had an early out for first Friday today and we have a long weekend for the holiday. The combination of these two events makes me feel like I've died and gone to heaven. Heck yeah long weekend! I'm going to spend the time snuggled up in a blanket, writing a more realistic scope and sequence of my classes now that I know the kids. I will also be inhaling massive quantities of water, vitamin C and zinc to ward off the cold, pink eye and strep that are going around the village right now.
Today our cross country kids traveled to Chevak and two of the boys placed fourth and sixth in the race! So proud!!! The salmonberry festival is next weekend and I am sad to report that I will be missing it to fly into Anchorage for SERRC training (though I am excited to head to wal-mart for water containers, a coffee pot, and some curtains that actually fit my bedroom window).
In other news, I purchased my tickets home for Christmas today before the flights filled up for the season. Look for me in Denver on December 16th (especially you Dad, since I need a ride home!!) and keep checking back for more Alaska updates.