Monday, January 27th
It was dark when we arrived last night, but here’s where we are staying – the Krow’s Nest Inn.
It’s a very cold morning – minus 34 (minus 40 with the windchill). Yikes! Harriet phoned Bear Creek before we left to see if they would have any students. The teacher said yes, so off we went. Bear Creek is a small hamlet (population about 50) that is 60 km north of Buffalo Narrows. Sasdaze (Dene for Bear Creek) School is a one room trailer that has a total enrollment of 9 kids in Grades 1 to 6. It was so cold today that usually school would have been cancelled, but the teacher actually drove and picked four kids up so that I would have at least a few kids to present to. Normally I don’t get to learn the names of all the kids at a school, but I did today – 2 girls, Charlena and Elena, and 2 boys, Carl and Deandre, and their teacher Kelly Kwan. I really enjoyed it.
While we were at Bear Creek, Turnor Lake phoned and said their boiler was out so school had been cancelled. Harriet got on the phone and quickly arranged for us to go to La Loche instead. La Loche is a much larger community (population about 3000) another 40 km northwest of Bear Creek. The La Loche Community School has almost 900 students in Pre-K to Grade 12. I read to 59 Grade Threes. I was grateful that the Grade Three teachers dropped everything and accomodated me on very short notice.
The reading went well. There was one little girl who was full of questions about being a writer. I love questions.
When we got back to the motel, I bundled up and went for a short walk. Saw ravens and some boreal chickadees, but it was way too cold to go very far. Maybe tomorrow. This was the best picture of a chickadee I got – not great, but my fingers were already getting numb.
Tomorrow, St. George’s Hill and Dillon, and it’s supposed to warm up. Here’s hoping!