Sunday, March 15, 2009


So you know what the problem is? Too damn many social networking sites. By the time I get done posting pictures and "status updates" on Facebook, not to mention Twitter now, there's really nothing left to come here and write a blog update on without being redundant. Seriously, is this form of blogging becoming obsolete? It might be, at least for me...

But! In the interest of trying to not go, oh, a full month between posts, here's an update. Because really, there has been news.

First off, we spent last weekend in Anchorage! Well, a long weekend, that made up our abbreviated Spring Break. We headed in on Wednesday evening, by snowmachine because the weather (of course) wouldn't let our chartered plane fly out to get us. Once we got to Bethel, sore and soaking wet, we discovered that the jet from Anchorage was actually going to come in for the first time in two days! Buoyed by the news we might actually make it out, we trucked over to the nearest diner to have some supper and kill the few hours 'til the plane was to arrive. Then, the scariness began. We were traveling some friends/coworkers and their baby, same flights, same hotel, everything. After we ate (and only a couple minutes after Sara, Ike and I had started to walk back to the terminal while our friends got ready), our friend had a seizure and collapsed, while her husband frantically called for an ambulance. It's astonishingly lucky that this happened while we were in Bethel, where there's actual medical care available, as if it ha happened in the village they would have had to rely on help to fly out, which in the weather would have been nearly impossible. So...while Sara, Isaac and I got word of this, let the airline know that their bags needed to come off the plane, etc., and flew to Anchorage on our regularly scheduled flight, our friends were taken to the hospital, and then on to Anchorage a few hours behind us on a medivac flight. Unreal.

So, our weekend in Anchorage was a combination of relaxing, sobering, productive, and adventurous. We helped our friends as much as we could, did some shopping, ate some good food, drank some good beer, and generally did what bush teachers do when they head into the big city. We even got memberships at Sam's Club, filled a cart, and braved the "bush order" process. Our boxes are supposedly on the way, but I'll let you know how that goes :-P

As for other big's LKSD Shuffle season. Contract time. Our version of the hot stove league. The time of year when gossip is afoot about who's leaving, who's changing sites, who's moving up in the world and who's giving up and going home to the lower 48 to lick their wounds. Well, as you may have known, Sara's position has been eliminated for next year. Nothing to do with anything, other than the fact that the district had apparently used the wrong funding for the program, and has to alter the way the job gets done. Not a huge deal, since all the teachers in those positions are pretty much guaranteed jobs either at their sites or elsewhere in the district if they so desire, but it has made "shuffle season" a little extra shuffly this year.

As for what Sara plans on doing, we had (or so we thought) a few options. One of the potential jobs was as a teacher coach, basically teaching teachers how to fill in the blanks left by the fact that the ELD positions were going bye-bye. Then there was the option of simply taking a regular teaching job, either here in Nunap or elsewhere in the district. This is pretty much where we thought we were headed, with a sweet, sweet spot in Oscarville with one of our good friends at a great, small school only a stone's throw from Bethel. Until....Sara heard about an opening for a jig at the District Office in Bethel, and was encouraged to apply. For various reasons, we assumed this was sort of a pie in the sky, not really plausible, "hey, I'm gonna do this just to practice my interviewing skills" kind of job application.

Turns out....she got the job. We're moving to Bethel.

I can't even wrap my brain around what this means, both in terms of challenges and advantages. The Cliffs Notes version from our "very serious discussion" about whether we wanted to take the job and move "into town"? Here we go.

Cons: Moving sucks (but we were going to have to do that no matter what), we'll have to buy a car, we have to find (and pay for, at Bethel prices) our own housing, Sara stepping into the unknown re: working at the D.O. and we'll have to live at a more "real world" more laid back lifestyle of the village, where most days the big decision is whether or not to hit up the Post Office and the store on the way home from work. It's amazing how stress free life can be where there is simply nothing to do.

Pros: Access to stores and restaurants, easier travel (it basically removes a step), stuff to do, hosting friends from the villages, work/volunteer opportunities for me, easier for people to come visit from the lower 48, access to a vet (not to mention our own, human, medical care), and a downright cool, quirky community.

Yeah, the decision was scary (as are it's implications), but it wasn't all that tough to make. Bethel ho!


Kimberly said...

Huzzah! When do you move?

KenWoods said... fixes that "too many social sites" problem.

John said...

Ah, and one pro that you didn't mention -- you can legally possess and consume beer (I think...) As long as you can get it shipped in. Not sure whether you can brew your own...
Congrats on the move. See you guys in a couple of weeks, I hope!

Anonymous said... fixes that "too many social sites" problem.

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