Monday, August 2, 2010

July 25-31

This was our last week of camp. We hosted pastors and their families, cooking and then cleaning.
On my last visit to the farmer's market I said good by to friends. Starr, a sseamstress, was completing an elkskin dress for a native woman. The woman had
hand beaded the lovely collar shown. Perhaps she would wear the dress at the Eskimo Olympic dances.
On Sunday Delta Junction celebrated its 50 year birthday. Originally called Buffalo Center when the AlCan was joined to the Richardson high, the tiny settlement changed its name to Delta Junction.
Buffalo burgers were served to over 5,000 residents and past residents who had come for the celebration.

This four flavored, four sheet pan sized cake and stacks of cupcakes and icecream from the local dairy, were a crowd pleaser.

One of Alaska's colorful residents is the trapper dressed in a leather vest over a bare chest, jeans (of course) and combat boots.

Look closely at the large man in the white shirt. He is a politician stomping for votes and carrying an unconcealed handgun on his belt.

The following photos are of paintings by Alaskan artist, Silvia Pecota.
They depict some of the Eskimo olympic events.
This is the knuckle hop. It tests the person's capacity to endure pain. With only knuckles and toes touching the floor, he competes to travel the longest distance.

The head pull is similar to tug-a-war, but with single competitors. A leather loop is placed over their heads. The one who succeeds is pulling it off his opponent's head or pulling him over the line is the winner.
The more painful ear pull has contests facing each other with a loop of cord joining opposite ears. They try to pull the loop off, causing pain and blood. The goal is endurance.

The Eagle carry is one of endurance, strength, and determination. The competor's rigid body must not touch the ground while he is being carried over a course.

Similar to a trampoline, the blanket toss is aseal or walrus or whale skin that is pulled tight. The umper does flips and turns and must land upright.

The kneel jump trains hunters to jump from moving ice floes. The athlete kneels on the ice, buttocks
resting on his heels. He swings his arms for momentum and jumps as far as possible.
This is similar to the scissors jump.

The Alaskan high kick is one of balance, control and consentraion. While supporting himself on one hand, the athlete has to kick a target with one foot extended in an overhead position. He must land on the kicking foot and not
The agility and determination demonstrated in these games is amazing.

I left Delta on Friday morning and held a book signing in Palmer at Fireside Books.
I'll keep in touch. The next couple of weeks will be volunteering in different areas.
Weather has been unusually warm, 50 to70 with rain.
Stay tuned!

1 comment:

  1. Well I congratulate you on doing a wonderful job.
    Looks like a good time was had by all.