There's been a lot of talk recently (around here) about Global Warming. Frankly, it's kind of a debated subject anywhere, but here it has very definite consequences. Here it can mean the difference between frozen ocean and open bays. Here it can mean the difference in where the animals move and whether they can easily be caught by hunters. Here it can mean the difference between wearing your winter parka or your spring jacket...
I'm still wearing my spring/fall jacket... and it's NOVEMBER!!! The temp has been hovering around zero for the last few weeks. It finally snowed and stayed around Halloween, but in the last week it's begun raining* off and on again. Which means icy roads covered in melt water... NOT FUN!!! It's nasty and slippery out. I'd rather -3 to +3 at this time of year!!! You ask anyone here and this is really odd weather for this time of year. We should be wading through snowdrifts and plugging in cars. Instead, I'm wishing I had splurged on icepicks for my shoes so I wouldn't spend half my walks stiff-legged and sliding around on the wet ice. So it's starting out as a warm winter. My friend who just returned here says there's no ice in the bay for a good 10 minute flight out from here. That's a big area without ice. There's a number of communities concerned that we won't get good thick ice this year. Which makes it difficult for travelling by sled dog or snowmobile.
That combined with the knowledge that ice shelves are breaking off from glaciers in massive chunks and melting into the oceans makes you wonder if this whole global warming thing is true. I wouldn't be surprised. But then, the earth has gone through at least one major cycle from really warm to ice age and back... maybe we're just on our way to the really warm end of the cycle. I mean, really, the ice might be a hundred or a thousand years old, but it's not as old as the earth, so it melting must, in some sense, be normal, right? And to be honest, other that the slick ice on the roads, I'm enjoying a warm winter!
*First rain (since the snow came to stay), was a freezing rain last week Friday and it knocked out my power for about 5 or 6 hours. The power kept trying to flicker on, just enough to make some things in my house like the microwave beep and turn right off again. I got concerned and went around unplugging anything valuable (except the fridge and stove, which I wasn't about to attempt to move). I found my flashlight, used it to find candles and enjoyed a quiet candlelight evening with a book and a phone chat with a friend. It even affected some of the electronics at the postoffice and a few other places! (which made me glad I unplugged things)