Nunavut Newbie v.2.0: Iqaluit Newbie

A journal that will hopefully help out anyone who is thinking about moving to Nunavut or anywhere in Northern Canada.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Things I Never Thought I'd Ever Say

"It's only -20C? Heat wave!"
"It's too warm to wear my parka, I'm walking home in a sweater." (In February in Rankin, after eating maktak.)
"It's a dry cold. -30C isn't so bad."
"My fingers hurt, I got freezer burn again." (This is what I call the intense feeling of pain one feels when putting bare flesh on outdoor metal.)
"No, it's only June. There's still snow."
"I can't believe they're's June."

"Is it just me or is this dog sled kinda slow?"
"Do you think they'll be serving maktak? I really want maktak. With some soya sauce, mmmm!"
"Will you take a photo of me in the igloo?"
"I can't pick anymore fingers are frozen stiff."

"$4 for a 2L of Pepsi? Oh my god! SO CHEAP!"
"$6 for a beer? Wow, what a deal!"
"So $12 gets you a KFC Big Crunch and fries? Seems reasonable I guess."

"Do you think you'll be home from Repulse Bay tonight?"
"I went to Igloolik, Chesterfield Inlet, and Repulse Bay in one day...for free!"
"I'm only bringing 4 Rubbermaid totes back with me plus my suitcase."
"What do you MEAN my suitcase is over 70lbs?"
"I got my return ticket for $1400...super cheap."

"If you're going to Yellowknife, can you pick me up some rum?"
"Did the plane come in? I want my rum!"
"I wanted to buy milk but everywhere in town was sold out."
"No, polar bears do not wander around my neighbourhood."
"I know it's only November but if I don't mail these Christmas cards asap, they won't make it in time."
"Wow, my Internet is actually kind of tolerable. This 3 minute YouTube video only took 5 minutes to download."
"I'll drive the [Honda/SkiDoo]!"
"What time is it? Midnight? Oh, it's still bright out. I thought it was only 7ish."
"I can't keep my window open at night...I live next to White Row."

"Wow, only one week for that package to arrive? From Ontario?!"
"Did somebody say FREE SHIPPING!?"
"I order my shampoo and conditioner online."


Saturday, June 19, 2010

T-Minus 32 Days Until the Big Move

Thanks so much for all the nice comments you guys have been leaving lately. They've been really nice to read.

For those wondering, I am going to keep writing post-Nunavut. Once I'm in Ontario, I'm going to start a new blog to chronicle my life as a born-again southerner.

There's been lots of movement since I posted my to-do list. On Tuesday I went around town and posted some signs. I noticed they've already been removed from a few places. That's testament to the fact SO MANY signs get put up on a regular basis. It actually bugs me because if the car and TV don't get sold soon, I have to go put and signs back up.

Since I posted, my cats have found a new home. Their new owner is coming to pick them up tomorrow. I'm going to miss them a lot, they've been such good company. I will never give away a pet ever again, once in a lifetime is more than enough.

There's been some interest in my TV and my Suzuki also. Once those things are sold, I won't have anything left to sell! I sold and gave away the last little bit today. I had a box left plus 2 bags of clothes so I brought them down to the thrift shop. The Anglican church has a thrift shop down in Green Row and I was more than happy to donate my stuff.

Starting Monday, I am going to start mailing 1 or 2 totes back to Sarnia each week. With all the money I'm giving Canada Post in the next little while, I hope they use it to hire more workers at the post office here. Our mail is unthinkably slow right now. On Monday, I received an Entertainment Weekly from MAY 14! It was a whole month late! I've seen on Facebook other Iqaluimmiut talking about how slow it is, so I know it's not just a fluke. Everything I've been receiving lately is 2 weeks to a month late. I'm expecting a postcard from NY state and I am expecting it to show up mid-July. Anthony was in Germany in April and he sent me a postcard from Cologne. It took about a month to get here. I'm not going to miss the constant frustration here that is mail.

On the agenda for this weekend (as far as moving is concerned) is pack up a tote or two, get rid of some of the cat litter I bought on sealift, and drill holes into my Rubbermaid totes. Normally I just use tape to keep the lid on my totes but since these totes are not going to be opened again until early 2011 likely, I decided to do it the right away and do the cable tie thing. The best way to keep the lid on is to put the lid on, drill holes along the edge of the lid that go through the lid and the tote, then use a cable tie to hold them together. Not even the war field that is Canada Post can pull the lids off then! (Knock on wood!)

This will be my inspiration when packing my stuff:

Current view out of my apartment:

(Coincidentally, this photo is exactly 1 year old. I took it June 19, 2009 at 11:30pm)

New apartment view:

(Okay, well, the view will be from one of those apartment buildings. And it will be facing the water.)

I'm still trying to find a job in Sarnia so I can buy myself a purty new car, so keep your fingers crossed that something comes my way.


Sunday, June 13, 2010

Leaving To-Do List

Admittedly, leaving here is a lot easier than arriving! I at least know what to expect of the south. Nevertheless, there's still much to do. I know people appreciate(d) my moving to-do here's my leaving one!

1. Give away Moon Unit and Dweezil. :(
2. Sell the Suzuki.
3. Sell the rest of the stuff in my apartment.
4. Change addresses on:
-Reader's Digest
-Our Canada (hush, I know my taste in magazines is elderly)
-Visa cards x2
-Bank account (change branch if possible)
-Bell Mobility bill
5. Cancel internet (I WON'T miss the Internet here!)
6. Pack stuff
7. Mail stuff down
8. Figure out if a storage unit is necessary
9. Clean up the entire apartment once empty.
10. Find something fun to do for when A visits.
11. Find out where the local thrift shop is and drop off unsold stuff.
12. Get Suzuki professionally cleaned.
13. Replace burnt out light bulbs before leaving.
14. Buy a new vehicle in Ontario.
15. Cancel car insurance.

UPDATED: 2010-06-19

That's about all I can think of. Not so hard! I've already sold the vast majority of stuff I wanted to sell. I'm currently trying to figure out how many totes the rest of my stuff will fit in and decide whether it's necessary to get a storage unit in Sarnia.

As a final note, if a certain person leaves me one more rude comment (I know who you are, I'm not stupid), I will be forced to disable anonymous comments for everybody. A good majority of my comments are from anonymous readers, so if you want to continue to be an idiot, you will wreck it for everybody. Consider yourself warned. I'm sick of your slanderous commentary about my life and I find it in REALLY poor taste that you would choose my blog of all places to blast your garbage. If you don't like me or like what I write, stop reading it.


Saturday, June 05, 2010

The 5 "W"s

I've been asked to give some explanation about my choice to move back to Ontario.

It started last fall. I decided to write the entrance test for the RCMP. I already work for the RCMP and after thinking about it since the day I started my job in 2007, I felt ready to try it out. My original plan was to wait to start the process when I felt ready to leave Nunavut. I did not feel 100% ready last fall but knowing it could take up to a year for the process, I went ahead and started.

Soon after, my mind was occupied by the idea of moving. It seemed inevitable after writing the test (I was certain I had passed). Everything just seemed like a forward march back down south starting then.

Shortly after I received the results (I passed), I went on Christmas holidays. It was then I met my boyfriend Anthony, who had found me online through this very blog and with whom I'd struck up an online friendship. I even went and visited him in his town, Ann Arbor. Without going into much detail, everything changed for me. I knew what I needed to do.

I came back home and canceled my RCMP application. It was a difficult thing to do as I'm not a fan of backing out of things, especially since all my coworkers knew I had applied.

Anthony and I were talking every single day (we still do) and things had gotten serious. After talking about our options, I decided that since I was planning to leave Nunavut anyway, I would move back to Sarnia so we could be closer while we continued to date.

So that's the deal. I rarely go into this much detail about my personal and work life, but I know everyone is interested in the details.

Now that I've returned home from my last ever vacation from Nunavut, the idea of leaving is becoming real. I don't know what it's like for other Nunavummiut, but I have lived most of my adult life here. I moved out of the house I grew up in when I was 19 and moved to Rankin Inlet shortly after turning 20. I'm 24 now and so much of my adult life has revolved around living here. There are things about being in the south that confuse me (most infamously, pay-at-the-pump gas stations). The rapid pace at which things change confuses the hell out of me. Self-checkouts were just getting big when I left. Timers on stop lights, iPhones, electronically-paid's a whole different world I'll need to learn.

As a final thought, the only part I am feeling genuinely sad about is the fact I can't bring 2 of my cats. If you know of anyone who wants 2 smart, friendly cats, let me know. They are spayed/neutered, de-clawed and 2 of the best pets you could ever ask for.

On a different note, I came across this website. It's an online store filled with different "Canadian" food. I thought it might be of interest to Nunavummiut who stock up on certain favourite groceries on vacations. They even sell Laura Secord chocolates!


Tuesday, June 01, 2010

July 21, 2010

"The time has come," the narwhal said,

"To talk of many things:

Of shoe stores--and sealifts --and TJ Maxx--

Of McDonalds --and Burger Kings--

And why the south is boiling hot--

And whether Canada Post will ship my things."

I can't believe I'm saying this, but I am moving back to Ontario on July 21st. I booked my flight today, I am departing in style: in executive class because for some reason, it's cheaper than economy.

I'm excited and scared and all sorts of emotions which I'm sure will become more varied as the date gets closer.

My blog posts will now be focused on the process of leaving.

So far this is what my to-do list looks like:

1. Find homes for my 2 cats. Anyone want them? They're great cats but I just can't take them with me.

2. Pack and mail down all of my stuff (at my own cost unfortunately).

3. Figure out where to send my stuff.

4. Hold a yard sale and sell everything else.

Anyone wanna help???