Sunday, February 3, 2013

Court in Pond Inlet

A little over a week ago I went to Pond Inlet for the first time.  At more than 72 degrees north, Pond Inlet is one of the northernmost communities in Nunavut.  Or anywhere, really.    

A consequence of the very high latitude is that the winters are very long and dark.  This year, the return of the sun did not take place until January 31st.   It was dark every morning when we went to court, and dark when we went back to the hotel at the end of every day.

At lunchtime though, there was light in the sky, and everything had a strange and beautiful glow.  I haven’t been to every community in Nunavut yet, but I've heard that Pond Inlet truly is one of the most gorgeous places in the territory.  I wish I could have seen more of it than I did.  I zoomed in to take this picture, and it isn’t very well composed, but just look at that pink mountain. 

I did get one shot that I really liked. 

I wish that I could have taken more and better pictures, but daylight hours and spare minutes were seriously limited.  It was a really busy court circuit.  Co-defence counsel, the Crowns and I arrived early Saturday evening. I was meeting clients during almost every minute of Sunday and Monday morning. Once circuit began, the court days were long. And when court wasn’t sitting, I was preparing and meeting clients.

Given that court was so busy, I was grateful that my hotel room was pretty comfortable (double bed! a bathroom to myself! coffee maker!) and that I didn’t have to share my room with anyone. And most especially not with a complete stranger, an axe murderer, or someone who snores.  It’s the little things.  

Here’s a picture of my circuit home away from home.

For a while it wasn’t looking good for getting back to Iqaluit on Friday when circuit was done.  All day Thursday (just in time for the first day of sun) Pond Inlet was blanketed in ice fog.  The way it works in Pond Inlet is that instead of flying in and out the same day, the plane crews fly in the night before, overnight in the community, and fly out first thing in the morning.  So, if the plane isn’t able to get in the night before, everyone is out of luck the following day.

Somehow both planes did get in on Thursday night, but then Iqaluit was under a blizzard warning for Friday.  On Friday morning at the airport our boarding passes were green-stickered with LANDING SUBJECT TO WEATHER. We might be leaving Pond, but where we were going to end up remained to be determined.

Happily, we did beat the blizzard to Iqaluit, and I got home right on time for a much-needed weekend off.  Next stop: Pangnirtung on February 9th.

Somebody That I Used To Know - Gotye
Strange Days - Matthew Good Band

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