July 23, 2007

Leaving Stonewall Homestead.

End of an era…

Our time fishing the grounds near the stonewall homestead have ended abruptly with a wave of good fish reports from the north. Thanks to today’s latest technology each boat in our group is equipped with satellite email, so as our five members are spread out amongst the grounds our captains resemble teenage text messengers on their cell phones. No need for secret radio channels any longer. We pulled our net out of the water and have begun the forty hour transition to the Bering Sea Salmon runs.

The hills around us are teeming with bears. One began to pester a nearby village so the locals shot it and cast it out to sea. The next high tide brought it right up on the beach where Keith and I found it. For a Grizzly it was medium sized at seven feet tall. It must have been a thousand pounds with for arms bigger than my thigh. Its wrists were the size of my thigh. Up until finding a bear and getting close enough to smell and feel its fur and gauge its mass I had entertained the idea of fending one off with a fisherman’s knife or out maneuvering one. Hmmm… not going to happen. We tried to cut its arm with a buck knife and were unable to get through the fur and no where near its thick tough hide. Its claws were nearly three inches long with paws like a squash paddle. If it wanted you it could have you.

I just finished Ishmael, a timely book about humans and their relationship to the universe. It is set with a caged Gorilla mentoring a young journalist. The book presents our creation myths in a new light and derives great lessons that inspire an ancient way of interacting with the world. It was timely for me because I am surrounded by a frontier that man has not conquered, and the elements rule your life.
We also capture a lot of our food and energy from our own efforts and local sources out here. The first few years out here I thought this place was beautiful but barren. Now I feel like I am surrounded by food and energy.

1 comment:

Carol Patterson said...

Your book, Ismale, was passed on to a Ute Elder, who was facinated by it. He says he can't understand how someone could write his exact feelings about cultures. He uses the terms "takers" and "leavers" now with everything he talks about.
Thanks for passing that on!