12 July, 1998
07/12/98 A Day Off
*** Everybody sleeps in - relaxed conversations - helping Betty clean house - a visit to the Mayor's house - an expedition with the mayor ***
On Sunday everybody sleeps in, with good reason. Everybody is tired after a week of ten-hour days and late nights in the lab. The morning was filled with casual conversations about teaching, education, grant writing, archeology, and plans for further excavation. Even though things seem hectic now it will get worse when construction starts and archeologists are going to have to monitor the construction company's excavations. There seems to be some nervousness here especially amongst the young Foremen upon whose shoulders a lot of the responsibility will fall. Around noon we went to visit our business and all around technician Betty Kinneeveauk Smith at her new house. Last Sunday Betty Smith and Kristen Wenzel attended a local church service and ended up renting the parsonage. Since our encampment is still on a barge somewhere, this gets Betty and Kristen out of the Village Safe Water office where they are staying. It will also be where we cook our meals so that we can reclaim kitchen space from our labs.
In the afternoon Aaron and I went on a visit to the Mayor's house. The Honorable Gilbert Barr the mayor of Deering was interested in how my digital camera could help him record some of this project. The mayor was interested in the pictures for a report that he is preparing to secure funding for preservation of the artifacts from this excavation. The Mayor ferried Aaron and me across the Inmachuk River at the east end of town. He led us up a bluff for a spectacular view of Deering and the surrounding area. The Mayor was hoping to capture a view from the same vantagepoint as a picture that the mayor has from 1903. After the mosquitoes drove us back down off of the bluff, the Mayor took us out into Kotzebue Sound. We had a tour of spectacular sea cliffs, sea caves, sea stacks, and arches. The cliffs were covered with nesting gulls and murre (crowbills). The Mayor told us stories of his days climbing these cliffs to collect bird eggs. When we returned to Deering we showed the Mayor the pictures that
we had taken, and printed a copy of the picture of Deering from the bluff for him. We promised that we would take pictures of the excavation and some of the better artifacts for him.
Having a day off so soon was nice for catching up on some much-needed sleep. As Tim said, the Mayor's tour of the surrounding landmarks was great. I was shocked to find that there were mosquitoes even out in Kotzebue Sound. I'm excited to begin work again tomorrow.
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