Monday, October 20, 2008

Mostly Cloudy and a High of 37 . . .

with light winds. That's the forecast for Anchorage today. Needless to say, we arrived safe and sound in Anchorage on Saturday afternoon. After getting our car and grabbing lunch, we headed to Aunt Becky's house, where she proceeded to feed us for about 5 hours. First, it was tea with this cranberry pumpkin bread she made - OMG, it was moist and delicious. I was still full after lunch, so I just ate a small bit and then kept grabbing more because it was so good! Then, after a bit, I took Eddie and Danielle to check in at our hotel. Danielle is my new grad student. Then, we returned to Becky's house an hour later and she served pot roast, complete with potatoes and carrots, and smoked salmon that they made themselves. Followed by grapes and mini candy bars, more tea, and more of everything else. We left about 7pm and then went to Freddies, got groceries (we have a kitchenette in our room), then got to the hotel and settled in.

Yesterday, we had a slow morning - we were all tired - then we went to the new Dena'ina Convention Center (where AFN will be held) because they held an open house. We looked around. On the top floor, there was a ballroom, and among other things was this "Dancing Heads" display - they were demonstrating how it worked. You sit in front of a green screen with a green cape on and then they play some stock music video. Eddie really wanted to do it, so we grabbed mom and the three of us danced our heads to Super Freak. It was really fun and quite funny, too. Then they give you a DVD to take home. It was free. Eddie watched it later at Teddy's and he laughed and laughed and laughed and we had the whole room laughing, too.

Then, at Teddy's, we started visiting, but it was clear that Teddy wanted to work. I'd wanted to interview him for the Alaska Native corporations project, but he wanted to work on placenames. So, we went back over my list - we spent three hours working on it, had dinner, and then spent another 2 to 2 1/2hours on it. WHEW! But we got through the whole list and I found out which ones were true duplicates and which ones are names that name two distinct places. We had the big map on the table, we heard stories, we decided on spellings and translations. Sylvester showed up right before dinner and he helped out, too. It was hard work - especially for the two men as I was tired and sometimes didn't quite understand their explanations.

They fixed a "white man's" dinner and then niqipiaq (Eskimo food). The white man's dinner was roast beef and mashed potatoes, the niqipiaq consisted of moose meat, half-dried seal meat, aliuGaq (sour dock), tugayuq (another type of greens), alluk (Eskimo ice cream - berries mixed with fat and sugar), seal oil, and the roasted veggies that were with the moose meat. They'd also made Eskimo fry bread - I think they used a doughnut recipe. Gosh that was good! Then, it was followed by tea and pie.

Of course, there was lots of visiting, too. Fun stuff!

On the schedule for today - head over to the Elder's and Youth Conference - hopefully run into people we know - and then maybe meet people I've heard of because I want to try to get interviews with them related to Alaska Native corps and the Inupiat view of Alaska Statehood. This afternoon? Who knows? If I don't have any interviews scheduled at that time, then Danielle and I might head to an archives to see what archival documents we can find related to ANCSA.

Good thing I brought the jeans that are too big around my waist . . . I think we're all going to roll onto the plane to go home on Saturday! : ) Yummers!


Carver said...

Good to hear that you made it there and things are going along. I hope you have a productive and enjoyable time.

laurie said...

It's that cold today here!!! Brrrr.

jeanne said...

WOW. And what an achievement re: place names! I seem to recall that was on your list of "stuff I want to get to". Congratulations! (Try not to work TOO hard!)

Dee said...

Hi Carver, Laurie, and Jeanne,
Yes, it was chilly there, but it was a productive trip. We worked a lot on placenames and I caught up with a lot of people. I did get some interviews done, too. Anyway, thank you all for visiting!