Aurore and Leonie are very happy, our dear friend from Grise Fiord is coming to visit us. Liza is hosted by Mary, her counterpart Mayor of Qikiqtarjuaq, and her husband Sam, whose mom, charming Minie, lives in Grise Fiord too. The next day, Liza is joining us for scientific field work on sea ice! We also have a nice visit of the cave not far away.
Comes the weekend with a nice trip to Mary and Sam's cabin in Atirialik, 3 hours drive to the north. As we leave town later than our friends, when done with lab work, they maliciously posted two road signs on the way, on the ice, to be sure we don't get lost!
Arriving at Atirialik on Saturday afternoon, we set up our tent and have a tea with Ena, Leonie's Inuktitut teacher, and Sammy, in their nearby cabin, before they head back to Qik (Sammy wants to dive and dig for more clams tomorrow, to pay for a new boat!). In another cabin, we also meet Geela (who gave us both dogs Pikuli and Takuli), her husband just returned from hunting with a seal pup. Then our friends arrived with Liza, they were fishing Arctic char, and shortly after, Mary's son is back with three ptarmigans!
Emotional journey for Liza, who is meeting with some childhood friends and visiting the site where she used to camp and fish with her parents when she was 7 years old. We learn that she lived in Pangnirtung before Qikiktarjuaq, then Clyde River, and then Grise Fiord.
Shared meals, celebrating France's birthday (44!), playing inside the tent, sliding on sealskin, climbing on rocks... On Sunday, the trip back to Qik in this sumptuous scenery leaves a true taste of happiness.
Aurore (4 and half years old): "Is it not by chance a little top to go camping?"
Before flying back to Grise Fiord, Liza wants to watch Eric diving: she loves clams! Eric first gets some for the scientific program, as well as sea urchins, amphipods, algae under the ice... the rest of the good harvest of the day (two dives) is eaten raw on the ice, near the diving hole, then packed in her luggage for her relatives in Grise Fiord. Then Liza wants to spend her last night on board Vagabond! We are delighted to have been with her for about five days.