This morning there was a AC Q&A panel meeting with much talk about the conditions of the Inuit – political, social and economic. Seems like the answer would be more and better education, which is expensive because of the large distances. Derrick has a lot to say about self-government being the answer. I agree, but they will need lots of federal help. I think education is the answer, but again, they’ll need provincial and federal help with that, too. Culturalist Kathleen spoke about the young Inuit men, who are caught in a place between being traditional hunters, like their fathers, and being westernized. She’s very much worried about where this is headed. Expedition Leader Jason, had his secondary education in the far north, then had a huge culture shock when he attended Memorial University in St. Johns. He thinks the northern school curriculum has to be changed to help distinguish the two cultures as well as put more emphasis on Arctic ways, which could also encourage the highly educated Inuit to return to the north. I think that’s the key, but again, I make my comments with you knowing that I’m not a culturalist or a sociologist.

Our afternoon landing was in Itilleq, which is a very isolated and wild coastline – rocky and mountainous. I did a long hike alone, which was really nice. Sometimes the best thing is to be alone in a lonely place to help “reset”. There was some climbing, but nothing crazy, and all good for the hip.

Went straight to the hot-tub when I got back to the ship early and had a nice conversation with 16-year-old Rachel. Very intelligent young woman – she wrote the outline for Sally’s presentation yesterday. Funny, she has an Urban Outfitters record turn-table and an old Polaroid camera. She has to write an essay about the trip for school. I think she’ll get a good mark. She also wants to write a short story about the voyage.

There was a variety show tonight which was a lot of fun, with much emotion between the guests and staff. This is really a “trip of a life-time”!

Arctic-Explorer-Route-Map

[click on any image for slideshow]

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