Iqaluit

So I’m in Iqaluit, Nunavut right now. [ed — not anymore]

It’s quite a culture shock really. Or maybe that’s not the right word – geography shock? Is that a thing? If not it should be.

I took a short walk earlier to check out the town. There’s lots of dirt pathways going from place to place that you can tell the locals carved out instead of walking on the road.

I actually saw children playing. Outside. By themselves. I KNOW!

It’s colder, obviously. It’s seven degrees currently, but that’s a temperature I find refreshing after a week of 35.

And yes, everything is more expensive. It’s $7.99 for a large bag of chips, for example. $21 for toilet paper. And anywhere from $30-$70 for kitty litter.

It’s hard to describe the way things are different here. The landscape looks like what I imagine Mars to look like. It’s a typical small town in some ways, one high school, two bars, not much to do. But everything is in three official languages instead of two. You hear people speaking Inuktitut.

It’s another world in a lot of small ways that are hard to describe. Nothing shocking, we all know things like it’s colder, they use seal skins, there are no trees. We know this. But experiencing the people and the landscape, even if just for a few days is totally different.

I came here for a career fair, only to discover a group of youth who are too shy to approach us. A group that only has access to spotty internet at best, so directing them to our website seems kind of like a joke. These kids, every last one of them, are losing friends and family to suicide – Nunavut has the second highest rate of suicide in the world, or so they said today.

Kids who are just trying to survive, dealing with substance abuse and suicide, are hardly going to be concerned about careers. At least not the way we’re talking to them about careers. We’ve got to take a different approach.

I’ve learned a lot in the scant time I’ve been here. I even think I could live here – though not forever.

I was certainly inspired by the kids at the National Inuit Youth Summit. May they lead their people to a better future.

For Chief — Green Chicken Posole

Ingredients

  • 2 small skinless, boneless chicken breasts
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 jalapeno pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 lb tomatillos
  • 1/4 bunch fresh cilantro
  • 1/2 tsp mexican oregano
  • 1 cube chicken stock
  • 1/2 cup beer
  • 15 oz hominy
  • 1 lime
  • 1-3 radishes
  • 60g feta cheese
  • 1 green onion
  • 60g tortillia chips
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • salt
  • ground pepper

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 400F
  2. Grease a baking sheet
  3. Remove tomatillio  husks and rinse
  4. Place on baking sheet in oven for 10 mins
  5. Disolve chicken stock cube in boiling water
  6. Dice onion
  7. Chop Jalapeno
  8. Grate garlic
  9. Remove cilantro from stems
  10. Drain and rinse Hominy
  11. In a large sauce pan heat 2 tbs vegetable oil over medium heat
  12. Add the onion, jalapeño and garlic and sweat for 5 mins till soft
  13. Transfer to a blender and add the tomatillios, cilantro and dried oregano and blend until smooth. Set aside.
  14. In the same pan add 1 1/2 cups of chicken broth, 1/2 cup beer, hominy and chicken breasts and bring to a simmer
  15. Add the tomatillio mixture and stir to combine
  16. Simmer for 20 mins or until chicken is cooked
  17. While chicken is cooking, slice limes into wedges
  18. crumble feta
  19. trim and slice radishes
  20. Slice green onion thinly
  21. Remove the chicken breasts from the posole let cool then shred
  22. Return the chicken to the pa and simmer for a few mins more
  23. Season well with salt and pepper
  24. Ladle into bowls and garnish with radishes,feta and green onons
  25. Serve with lime and tortillas on the side.

Motivation

There are so many things I want to do, and I am so, so very tired.
There never seems to be enough hours in the day, although truth be told I spend most of them sitting on my ass in front of a computer. That’s not to say I don’t love you, Internet, but I really should be getting out and doing the things that I want to be doing. The only thing stopping me is myself and a lack of energy. Things I want to do, or do more of:

  • Yoga
  • “Running”
  • Bytowne movies
  • Reading
  • Beer events
  • Writing in coffee shops
  • Cooking

I think that’s a fairly decent list, as these things go.

But something always stops me. Either there’s something on the internet that pulls me in – and it doesn’t take much – or I just don’t go. I need a better system of self-motivation, because obviously what I’ve got isn’t working for me. Sometimes I think money will do it, like when I used to pay upwards of $500/month to see a personal trainer. Sometimes I try to set up a reward system, but when you get yourself whatever you want anyways, that doesn’t really work. I try to picture myself as one of my favourite ass-kicking characters who would never just sit around reading Reddit, but sadly, I am not Starbuck, no matter how much I pretend I am.

I want to live life, not just exist. I want to feel fulfilled.

So readers, how do you motivate yourself to do the things you *want* to do?