We were really lucky, as instead of being in Cambridge Bay during the blizzard, we were "stranded" in Yellowknife, unable to fly home to Cambridge Bay while the blizzard still raged. From Monday to Friday, we had to wait at the hotel in Yellowknife for the weather to clear. But it wouldn't be entirely accurate to say that we suffered while we waited. We'd wake up in the morning, go for breakfast in the hotel restaurant downstairs, and then lounged in our room watching TV. In the evening, we'd come down to the lobby bar in time for happy hour (read: free food and cheap drinks). By the time we finally checked out, the bartender knew us by name, by face, and our favourite drinks. After a while, I wondered if this was what life would be like, living in the retirement home we used to work in.
So...yeah, it wasn't terrible for us.
Meanwhile, back in Cambridge Bay, many people were without running water and therefore could not take a shower for days...but oddly enough, generally had power so the were able to post about their experiences on the Internet while they were snowbound. These photos were posted on Facebook and Instagram by people in the community:
carving out a path home
You can see more incredible photos from CBC here, as it apparently made front page news in the country.
Eventually Environment Canada declared that the blizzard alert was over, and the water delivery trucks began running again. The trucks hit the road to start clearing the snow, and the offices and schools opened again. And the weather let up, a little, just long enough for us to be able to land our plane. After several days of cancelled flights, there were many reunions at the airport. Families together again, folks trying to leave on vacation finally able to leave, folks trying to get back from vacation (like me) finally able to return. And mail! And eventually, groceries!
The shelves at the grocery store were kind of empty yesterday after the blizzard which kept the planes from delivering groceries. So we made do for dinner, defrosting stuff from the freezer, and lots of pickled veggies: korean kalbi beef made by my grandma, mandu dumplings from Sannah's mom, pickled daikon from @topshelfpreserves, kimchi from my mom, and ddukgook (rice cake soup) made by Rob! #WhatRobFedMe
Of course, the blizzard conditions didn't stop some folks from having adventures.
The Hamlet of Cambridge Bay put out this message about snow clearing and water/sewage service after the blizzard:
Of course, one question is whether this weather ever really ends. Saturday went by with perfectly fine weather, but then on Sunday, we were confronted with yet another blizzard warning:
Here we go again. Time to stock up on food, candles, water, and board games.
Read the Nunatsiaq News' account of the blizzard here