My first official day alone! I get up, brew a pot of tea, check the Montreal Gazette on-line, and listen to CHOM.
Arrangements of the kitchen, bedroom and the rest of the house are complete. I left my office space until last. Sharpened pencils are lined up, note paper is organized by size, the stapler is filled, computer paper is stacked, mail has been prioritized. I am ready!
Like most writers (hopeful ones!), setup is a procrastination process. If only my computer was a bit faster, if only the sun wasn’t shining on my screen, if only I didn’t suddenly need to clean the cupboard under the sink … oh, and there’s those muffins I could be baking …
Listening to Canada AM, I think of a friend who, after university, taught in a fly-in community Northern Canada with her husband. I emailed her before our move to ask her about their experience. They actually had to WAIT for mail to be flown in. To have reading material, arrangements were made with a library, allowing for shipments of books every three months or so.
“Knowing your and Andy’s personalities,” she wrote. “You’ll be just fine!”
Here and now, I have enough books on my playbook to last me several years, I can listen to Montreal radio and my downloaded music as I bake. Technology has made distance so much more endurable.
One of Andy’s students came by and gave us brief history of his family at Mistissini. He also told us about community events, suppers, and a buy and trade website where people of the community would auction off crafts, home cooked meals and services.
“You can come to stuff happening in the community,” he said. “Just show up and sit with your students or other teachers. There’s always something going on. And funerals … if it is a well-known person of the community, it’s a feast!”