Thursday, July 31, 2008

Six and counting.

What a difference a week makes. This time last week it was 15 degrees and heading for a record 30.8.
This morning it is 7 degrees and heading for about 8.

Fog still around, not looking good for any flights. Any one who was here yesterday and wanting to get to Goose Bay and having any smarts would have jumped on the Northern Ranger last evening.

Man I thought I had royal Ozzie blood in me but this guy makes me jealous.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Five and counting.

It’s the fifth day of fog, drizzle, rain, yucky stuff like that. I believe that some people in the research field are a little peeved with the situation and instead of carrying on to the Torngat Park are making arrangements to return home, weather permitting.

The crew of the sloop Elskov, see left, [I believe this is one and the same] have no such thoughts, they will continue on to Saglak before turning around. Two of the crew will disembark though, while the other two carry on.
It was no surprise to hear that the two disembarking are from Main. What is it this year, every second person we talk to, and their dog, is from Main. I’m no conspiracy theorist but something seems to be afoot.
While at the dock yesterday Fran was speaking to a local gentleman in Inuktitut, Fran asked him "when do you thing this weather will clear". The guy responded "when the gulls stop being so happy".

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Sleep interruptus.

Some sort of lightening thunder storm we had last night. Started about 1, or at least that’s when I was awoken by the sky lighting up. The storm lasted until around 5.30, that’s when it felt safe to turn my computer and radio on.

Some one should tell John Hickey that the community of Davis Inlet was abandoned several years ago now. On CBC this morning John offered up that he had visited that community last year and was appalled to see a bag of oranges going for over 6 bucks.
The interview was on the announcement of more money going into the FLS. It will subsidies some fresh foods all year round and attempt to bring fresh milk in line with Happy Valley Goose Bay prices.
I say attempt because Hickey gave no indication that they intend to have some sort of accountability regime in place for retailers. He also said there would be no inspections for quality and state of the goods prior to shipment from Goose Bay to the coast. This is where the vast amount of problems originate, talk about burying your head in a pile of rotting fruit.

So words saying the Williams Government is committed to supplying affordable fresh nutritious foods but are not committed to ensuring the savings are passed on, or the goods are of suitable quality, are just that, words. Throw more money at it, that will make it better.

Any way the details will come out in the wash eventually, 200 grand has been put in this year making it a 600 grand program, track the money honey.

The porcupine seems to have moved on.

Looks like the whole press conference was about announcing old monies anyway. The media centre has been up and running since April.

Monday, July 28, 2008

The fog is so bad

this guy got lost in it.

Well maybe not, but he did walk up the road past the front of the house, up the side of the house, past the dogs favorite viewing spot and up the tree adjacent to the greenhouse. Not sure if the dog was out when this happened, no noise, just a phone call letting me know what the situ was and some young guys out looking up at it. Siutik was sniffing the ground so I guess she was not out when porky walked past.

So now I have to put the dog on a shortened lead and keep an eye on her until ol porky porcupine is gone.

Size does matter?

I have longed for a Digital SLR for some time. Price has been the major factor for me not having one. Prices are coming down for the cameras, alas the lens’s still knock the total cost up making the decision to buy difficult.

Like most I was hoodwinked in to believing that Mega pixels was the most important factor in buying any digital or DSLR. Not so according to this article in the NYT.
It’s the size of the Sensor that matters.

If I did buy I most likely would go for an Olympus camera, if only for the fact I have used Olympus since the 1980’s and they have served me well. I have an OM2 SLR that I bought in London in 1979, and a digital c-5050 that I bought several years ago.
I do not use the OM2 now at all; I would if there were development options closer to home. I used to send film to Toronto and even Vancouver for development. The c-5050 is great, and if used correctly can produce images good enough to print off up to 8x 10 no trouble.

Another reason I would hesitate in buying a DSLR at the moment is there size. I came across a guy with a Nikon DSLR recently, he had an attached extra battery pack, the unit was huge and needed a dedicated bag to carry it around.

We are socked in with fog this morning. Temperatures are OK but it is the third day in a row for fog and drizzle, no planes, no people moving except by water, I wonder if CBC will do a follow up on the weather if this is still on the go by Thursday, and it does look good for that.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

The magnificent girl

in her flying machine.

A self portrait of the GD during her solo, good thing Gary came up with the mullah for the fancy cell phone.

Can any one pick out the local of the airport?

I have to call GD to tell her where she is.

Just joking on calling the GD, but you new that, right.

So the weather is not looking good for the foreseeable future, puts a damper on things for many folk, pity that, but the temperatures are not bad.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Some cotton balls down by the watershed courtesy of Andrea Proctor. A picture of the Wanderbird in Hopedale on a hot sultry Thursday last courtesy of Andrea Proctor. And then one of her today, a fogged in Saturday morn. Quite the contrast eh?

There are a group of tourists from the states walking around filling in time waiting for their luggage to be flown in. They are due to go north on one of the local long liners.We gave them some encouragement about the weather, like wait 5 minutes, but I'm not sure that is the case today, but then wait 5 minutes.

While talking to a worker outside the fish plant a tourist broke away from a group outside the church and came over to play with Siutik, dam spoiled dog.
After awhile of rough play she said "you are from Australia right". I asked how she picked up on it since I had not said much. After faining that she picked the accent she then admitted that a local person had pointed me out. lawyers for ya.
I did not pick her for an Ozzy girl, she was from Melbourne, guess because she has been living in Hong Kong for 10 years teaching law, the British influence was very evident.
Oi, you look'n at me? Nar, we be wandering what she be out there.

Good news, GD completed her long solo/solo flight yesterday, no details yet, called her mom while out shopping. Everybody anxious for her to finely get home, whenever that will be.

Seeing that it's summer, and seeing that many tourists ask if the Northern Lights can be seen this time of year, and seeing that we have a neutron monitor and a magnetometer in town I was wondering if Nain played a role in this scientific news, and no, you cant see the Northern Lights very well this time of year. Too much daylight I guess.

I for one am anxious to hear what this is all about. To date the provincial program plays a minor role in supplying wholesome, nutritious foods at a reasonable cost to the people of the Labrador coast [compared to the Federal all year round program]. Perhaps it is some good news culminating out of all those meetings last year.

Of those wandering ‘what she be out there’, well that is the Wanderbird. She arrived about midnight on Thursday.
Not long after I took the photo the captain and Karen came ashore. We had a bit of a chat then gave them a quick essentials tour of the town, both were a little anxious about the availability of fresh produce for their first trip north. There anxiousness was justified, but with some creative cooking skills I’m sure they will get by.
The 12 guests arrived by plane and spent the night in the Atsanik to join the ship on the morrow [today] for departure.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Record broken.

Well that was a warm one. Nain broke a 75 year old record [28.8] with a high of 30.7. Hopedale and HV-GB also set new record highs.
The high at the house was 31.9 and in the greenhouse 38.
CBC radio and TV made a big issue of the records, 'On the Go' even led off with the 'hot hot story', a live inteview with a long term resident of Nain.

It is still 23 inside the house this morning, but temps are supposed to drop today. With the drop the flies will be back, actually they are, kids walking up the road just now are doing the usual Labrador wave with a vengeance.

Our dog does not do heat well either, very lethargic, one time in the afternoon she did not do the usual song and dance that she come with us when we were going out the door.

There were lots more tourists on the Northern Ranger last trip. Some disembarked, others stayed on for the return run. A motorbike club seemed to make up the bulk of the return crowd.

Wednesday afternoon we were walking around town with a couple from Tel-Aviv. Another couple greeted us, seems they met up with the Tel-Aviv couple on the Ranger. They exchanged pleasantries and then the man came up to me, put out his hand out and said “you’re Nain Bay”.
I was a bit taken aback at first but I put my hand out for the shake. The gentleman continued on with “You’re Nain Bay; I read your blog all the time, thank you very much for doing that”.
While shaking his hand I could not but feel a little puzzled, but confirmed that I was indeed Nain Bay and that I was a little humbled that he reads my blog yadda yadda.

He continued on with the superlatives and finished off with, “thank you very much for doing that, especially all the photographs”. He was from Newfoundland, I did not get the town, but I felt happy that he gets joy out of these musings; maybe it even prompted their visit, who knows as we continued on in one direction and they in another.

From talking to many people it is evident that little to no information is readily available to tourists arriving in HV-GB about Nain or getting to the Torngat National Park from here.
The cost of getting to the park is way out of the average person’s budget. That is with out planning ahead, research, logistical planning, coming in a group would be the best way. Or maybe some people are told of the constraint and continue on in any case. Any way people should be told that it is early days for the park and there are many logistical hurdles that have to be overcome yet.
Whatever the case many tourists either do not head this way, or come on the boat and go back on the boat due to the lack of accommodations or lack of dedicated fully informed information booths.

It is also evident that the food on the Ranger is mainly still basic fast [crap] food. Also that at some ports of call they arrive at meal times, the tourists go ashore for a look see, when they get back on board the cafeteria is closed, bad luck mate, next meal is at ?
They are also disappointed that no information is available on board, that there are no post cards or souvenirs [the display cases are there from day’s yore]. All in all it is evident that the government is running the service into the ground to prove that it does not work for their agenda ahead.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Holy sunshine batman.

Got to +29 official and +30.5 in the shade at the house, no breeze to speak of.

What with the dusty roads and all the heavy traffic it reminded me of a dusty frontier town in Afghanistan, at least the ones you see on TV. The difference being; the danger of being bumped by a heavy vehicle, or a light one for that matter, rather than an IED.
I’m still disgorging dust from every orifice of my face this morning, I guess most of the pedestrian traffic is too.

Any way we are in for another one today by the looks of it.

The tug that lost the McNally Olympic is back in town. No one seems to know the status of the barge and what the company intends to do about salvage.

So after a hectic morning we took a walk down to the dock, looking for some ocean breeze, not a lot on offer.

We called into one of the stores, the food by mail had come in earlier. The staff were sorting through this mixed box of fruit, the picture gives you an idea of the state of the fruit. So much for Canada Post and there inspection regime, not to mention the mentality of the person who packed the fruit like that. I obtained permission to take the photo and said I would be following up on it. Not that anybody outside gives a rats arse.

At the entrance, or exit, of the dock the green team were doing a paint job on a rock. The Nunatsiavut flag is going to be painted on it.

Then a plane was coming in for a landing, exciting eh?

It was too dam hot so back to the house, Siutik does not do heat that well, us neither for that matter. +29 as I write.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

We try to do our little bit to help the environment, but this is pushing the limit, if ham and cheese or BLT’s are going to harm the environment then so be it.

Looks like we are heading into the 4th day in row of 20 and 20+ [at the house] temps today, another one tomorrow and then showers are predicted.

There was a boat in town yesterday [no pics] that is heading for California via Alaska. Maybe wishful thinking but then maybe not.
Thanks to Andrea Proctor I now have a picture of the "Geraldine", story above.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Where are you!

I am told the name on this catamaran means 'where are you' in bad French. She called into town for a few hours yesterday, came up from Venezuela and heading for Cape Chidley before returning to Nain in 2 to 3 weeks.
The greeting crew were out.

On the opposite side of the dock to the catamaran were two long liners [out of the picture; one recently purchased].
One spent the day being loaded up with supplies, material for the temporary camp, kayaks and sundries for the summer program in the Torngat Mountains National Part.
The recently purchased vessel will be going to the same place in a couple of days. Some cleaning up is being undertaken. Both vessels will do some work for Parks Canada while in the area.

There are some interesting dichotomies going on with the Park, what with the Inuit in Quebec being on the Co Management Board, and other things.

A third long liner has been busy taking an archeological crew up to Green Island then on its return loaded up the Buddy Merkuratsuk family for their stint in Hebron. They will be monitoring the Historical sight for 6 weeks or so, making sure any visiting people from boats and choppers do not inadvertently take things from the remaining buildings on site. Seems many items from the buildings have been disappearing. Better late than not at all.

Monday, July 21, 2008

I took these pictures on an early Sunday morning walk. This bird taxing down the runway is a little north of it's usual range [ the Eagle River].

A mouses view of some wildflowers.

Then this of the now flowing Tulligunnaks. Amazing it is doing so well as it gets no direct sunlight.
Lastly the rock crusher in full crushing mode at the quarry.
Amazing morning, no fog, fog patches, cloud, precipitation, nothing but clear sky and that big yellow thing, heading for a warm one.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Summer Saturday in the void.

Looks like we are in for some real summer like weather next week. This unsettled stuff has been too prolonged.
Lots activity around town with archeologist getting ready to go up to Green Island in Okak Bay, the ever present geologist looking for their eldorado, heavy trucks rumbling down the narrow roads to and from whatever they are working on.

I spent a good deal of time in the kitchen baking bread and pies but managed to get out several times, once to a ‘moving sale’ and a late walk around town with Fran and some guests.
Another guest took off for the day fishing and musseling; she came back with some char and one rock cod and a good hit of Labrador air and a sense of how humble we all really are. Her guide gave a good botany lesson too I am told.

The ‘green team’ had a ‘community’ clean up along the shore line, only a handful of people turned up to help, even with free food on the offing after the clean up. The poor showing is not the fault of the ‘green team’, more like apathy, good weather, busy with other stuff. But the shore line looks a lot better with quite a bit of garbage removed.

Things are gearing up for this year’s activity in the Torngat National Park, have spoken to some locals who will be ‘employed’ up their, not a bad way to spend a month or so, doing what you love and getting paid.

The mv Astron made it in yesterday, 2 week turn around, not bad all things considered.

Friday, July 18, 2008


Not exactly the sunny Mediterranean is it? Fog, drizzle, more fog, came down thicker later in the day.
This green hulled sloop named Brendan’s Isle [out of Baltimore MD] must have hit a leprechaun or sum’n.
Of course me mentioning the S word would have nothing to do with the weather patterns that seem to be what we will be getting for the foreseeable future.

Thursday, July 17, 2008


I noticed this new sign down the dock yesterday. There are no government information kiosks at the points of entry to Labrador, but this sign will point out to the lucky few [who made it to the end of the line] whence they came.

There is some vital information missing from these signs, unless you are from Nain then the missing information would just add to the inconveniences that are thrown at the traveler. Not to mention the name of the Province is incomplete, but hey, it's the new brand.
By the by: the Minister of transport was in town for several hours yesterday. The minister was receiving close up information from the users from the confines of the cab of a pickup when I saw her.
This is from the PR blurb of her pending trip. "Minister Whelan has demonstrated a keen interest in the thoughts and ideas of community leaders throughout Labrador," said the Honourable John Hickey, Minister of Labrador Affairs. "As this government moves forward with its mandate under the Northern Strategic Plan for Labrador to improve and advance road, marine and air infrastructure, it is essential to have the direct input of the people who use these modes of transportation. Minister Whalen will have the invaluable opportunity to receive that input face-to-face."

Continuing with the marine theme: The mv Astron made it as fare as Makkovik this run, it is now back in Cartwright loading ports to Nain. Seems strange, some one mentioned that they forgot something and had to go back for it. So by the time gets here it will be about 17 days since last arrival.
Not that there's any rush, the store shelves are only 3/4 empty, ways to go yet before they are full empty.

Fuel stop!

This little baby stopped by to re fuel yesterday. The vessel is brand new, 5 days old, 5 days in the water, 5 days travel from Glovertown NL to Nain.

The engines are two quite LARGE outboards, Yamaha v8 350 HP.

So with engines like that and what looks like a displacement hull you don’t get very good mileage. 4 miles to the gallon to date.
This may be reduced for awhile with the boat taking on 650 gallons of fuel. 200 in the tanks and 10 drums on the rear deck.
Next stop Port Burwell on the way to Iqaluit, the home port.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

I have been some what reluctant to use the S word [speaking too soon] but now I guess it is as good a summer as we will get. Sort of like a mild winter in the land down under.
It has been getting up into the mid to high teens the last two weeks, sort of muggy like with light rain showers now and again. Last night around suppertime the clouds came in quite dark with rain showers, fog and some distant thunder.
All good conditions for the bugs to thrive, and they sure are.
Looks like more of the same for the rest of the week.

On the QT, Fran and Matthew went off fishing again yesterday morning. Fran has been getting so many hooks snagged that she decided to not take her/our rod.
So what happens? Let’s just say Fran borrowed Matthews’s rod for a cast. Some one ended up at the nursing station to get hook extracted from his forehead.

Grandma is more distraught at what happened than grandson who took it all very well, even chatting up the nursing staff while they wait for the maintenance man to bring the plies in.

GD called with report of her long cross country flight [instructor included]. Did Deseronto, Oshawa, Peterborough triangle.
At Oshawa they landed without any hold ups, but then had to wait for over half an hour for take off, had quite a number of planes behind her before she got OK for take off.
In they approach Peterborough they were just about to descend for landing when another plane was spotted 100 ft directly below them. Whoever it was had not used their radio to ID themselves and whatever else it is you do in when approaching airports in high traffic areas. A/hole
So GD had to swing away to do another approach run.
So the next run is a solo of the same triangle.

Monday, July 14, 2008


Mealyman offers up this question: This is one other factor to consider that the Provincial Government seems to ignore. Thats the possible lengthening/completion of Route 138 on the Quebec Lower North Shore to join Route 510 in Southern Labrador. How would this affect freight from the island?

Route 138 would be a Quebec Government responsibility as we know. If it is ever finished it would be a boon to tourism IMO, it offers up so many possibilities for the motorized tourist.

As to shipping freight into Labrador, on the face of it you would think that shipping freight directly to Goose Bay by road from the south, then onto a ship northward bound would be a death knell for freight from the Island to Labrador.

But we already have that option with the western section of 510, Lab West to Goose Bay.
This has not reduced freight from the Island, nor has it reduced costs of goods for the coast.

The bulk of the freight still comes from the island into Labrador, especially the coast.

Why is this one may ask. Considering the extra miles by road and sea the freight has to travel via the Island you would think it cheaper to ship direct by road to Goose Bay, then on to the boat, a one time handling.

The reasons seem to be multi faceted.
One would be the larger population base on the Island, hence larger wholesaler operations.
Another is that the marine freight is subsidized.
Another is that many of the retailers on the coast have special financing [or did have] arrangements with wholesalers on the Island.
Another is wholesalers on the island offer free shipping on certain size orders.

Much of this still does not explain why goods brought from Goose Bay wholesalers on the whole cost way more than from the Island.

The shipping from Goose Bay would still be subsidized. There is less handling than freight from the Island.

Why is it that in winter certain frozen foods can be shipped by road from the Island to Goose Bay, put on a plane [full freight charges] for Nain and still cost less than buying the same product from Goose Bay wholesalers? Take into consideration that if the goods were purchased from Goose Bay wholesalers then they would qualify for a “food by mail” subsidy. The goods from the Island do not qualify.
Many questions, no answers.
Map courtesy of mealyman.
Update: I just came across this site, lots of information on the Trans Labrador Highway, route 510. Also gives one an idea of the difficulty getting to and from. In the drop down menu under travel info, the maps section is particularly helpful, alas it does not show the "ferry service" from Cartwright to Nain.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Michael Johansen gives a review of the mv Sir Robert Bond, the vessel that serves southern and central Labrador.
His question “what of the future” raise similar questions of what will happen with the two boats that serve the North Coast. The Astron is way beyond its best before date and the Northern Ranger needs at least an upgrade.

Maybe Michael [or some one else] can do a similar star grading and critique of the future of the North Coast vessels.

We have been told by government representatives that two boats serving the North Coast is not an option once the road is completed from Happy Valley Goose Bay to Cartwright.
There is a northern strategic plan out, meetings and consultations on transport were held in communities last year, but there is still no indication of what the new configuration will be in two or three year’s time.

One scenario is the building of a new vessel to serve both freight and passengers. If one is to be built then a hurry up order should be issued.

It is my opinion that if we end up with one vessel then both freight and passenger traffic will suffer.

Then there is the issue of where the port of departure will be. There is a strong lobby for that to be Goose Bay. I know that many on the north coast will take issue with that.
On paper it makes sense, the road from Quebec and the road from Southern Labrador end up there.
But then we have the problem with extra costs associated with road transport, it would mean a dramatic increase in freight from the Island portion of the province, and that is where the bulk of the freight originates to date.
Then there is the fact that GB wholesalers are smaller, carry less stock, and the prices are higher than on the Island, hence the reluctance to buy from them.

One idiot suggested that the boats to the North Coast be eliminated, yeah right. Another quipped that maybe ONE vessel could serve the north coast as well as Nunavut, what is wrong with these people?

There is much to be concerned about, the time to deal with these things is now, and many voices should be involved.
Maybe the visit this week to the coastal communities by the Minister will reveal some new initiatives, maybe not.
One thing is for sure, with so many communities to be visited in in such a big land in such a short time frame, the meetings will be short. And what are the odds of weather interruptions?

While on shipping; the Astron is still in Lewisport loading for ports to Nain. It has been eight days since it departed Nain; it takes about four days to do the run up the coast, if it left tonight that would be twelve days between arrivals in Nain. Just saying.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Feeling saucy.

Travel + Leisure magazine has published the 10 and 100 best.

I see that Cape Breton Island made it in as the 10th best Island in the world to visit.

The Island of Newfoundland Labrador did not get a look in, nor did it get a mention in the best in North America.

Those ads with laundry flapping in the breeze in the breeze and the crazed idiot hanging over the edge of the cliff may have to be re assessed.

If they think Nain airstrip is scary have a look at this one.

Friday, July 11, 2008

I took in a couple hours of the Language Conference yesterday, day three, final day.
Many faces from conferences past with a sprinkling of new and the young.
One can hope that the messages get across and are acted on in a timely [read quick] manner. Advisedly; I would not hang by the short and curlies.
Everybody will be pleased to hear that BigLand received some potato's on the last Ranger.
10lb bags of washed PEI spuds for $,6.99. Now that might seem a lot to some, but when you compere it to the $18.00 for the equivalent 10lb for the ones they flew in.
We had a good dump of rain yesterday, odd light showers in the morning then heavier started in the afternoon and is still coming down this morning.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

When in Rome!

Like they say, when in Rome do as the Romans do. But do they serve kippers for breakfast in that hotel, that is the question.

Giant bonsai?

The air traffic seems to have increased to summer mode. Yesterday morning in the space of 30 minutes two take offs and three landings at the strip, pictures showing just two of the landings. There must have been half a dozen more throughout the day. Add to that the rotary traffic it makes for a busy little air space.
Some of the traffic is related to mining exploration; fuel was being loaded on to a twin otter and headed north. Other traffic is schedule flights, freight charters and the fuel stops for the GB to Voisey’s bay flights.

Soon added will be traffic going up to the Torngats. The summer project of the Torngat National Park will be under way in a week or so. Researchers, students, local guides/bear monitors as well as the fledgling tourism industry will venture into the park for 6 weeks or so of intensive activity.

This little tree reminded me of a guy who was in town some weeks back. The guy had spent some time living in Japan and had mentioned he had bonsai trees back at his home on Long Island.
One day while walking in the hills with him he mentioned that some of the stunted trees would make good bonsai. It would take the input of an expert from Japan who would pick the trees suitable, dig around the roots and nurse them in the ground for several years before removing them.

So this tree sure has a bonzai look about it, ignoring the fact it is five foot high.
Those old oil storage tanks are an eyesore eh? They have been in that location for over twenty years. Some failed venture to supply fuel to the town.
Not sure why they have not been removed. That area of town is “light industrial” now with the chopper re fueling and the rock quarry and the dump is just down the road a bit.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Labrador, whats that?

Flies were not a bother while walking in the hills yesterday. Can’t say the same for the grit and sand, coped a face full, I am still regurgitating same this morning. Winds were not that high, 50 KPH and constant.

One of my faithful readers from down south took pity on me after reading the potato gripe. She arrived in Nain [for the Language conference] and called to say she had brought some spuds for me, nice to have people worry about you.

Wally has another good point [continuing] about the way the province treats Labrador in tourism promotion.
This neglect was highlighted in a story on CBC the last two days. The Lab West Tourism Association has not been able to open its tourism booth this year. Lack of funds [they receive 5 grand from government] and not being able to compete with other higher paying employers has left a big gape in the dissemination of information to tourist.
This morning Cindy Lyall interviewed the minister for tourism Clyde Jackman. When asked why there are no provincialy run tourism information booths in Labrador [there are many on the Island] Clyde went on ad nausea about this and that but did not answer the question. By the time Clyde confers with his staff and does a few studies the tourism season will be well and over for this year, then a repeat next year perhaps. Lab West is an entry point into the province not just Labrador, to not have at least two provincial information centers [the other in the Straights] in Labrador seems criminal to me.
Clyde suggested that many people do their research electronically before departing on their trip this day and age by visiting the government tourism site. Well there is not much there about Labrador, and why do I keep getting people asking me questions on the best way to get here and about booking trips.

It should not be the responsibility of a regional group to promote the Province; it should be up to the provincial Government.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Man what a wild weather day yesterday. Fast moving patterns came and went. One minute partly cloudy, next light rain with ominous cloud patterns, then cleared to cloudy, windy there for awhile, even lightning south of here but no thunder.

It was an anxious day for the organizers of the language Conference to start today I bet. It was the travel day for most of the participants.
I think most did manage to get in, judging by all the new faces in town.

The conference is to figure out where Inuktitut is at the moment, and then decide where it should be in the future.

Wonder how Paul and Richard are doing, should be close to Makkovik by now, then again the weather has not been that good for their trip.

UPDATE: I wonder now longer, an alert reader sent along the latest coordinates of the two kayakers.
Nearest Location:not known
Distance:not known
Time:07/08/2008 12:35:21 (America/Halifax),-59.7308&ie=UTF8&z=12&om=1

Thank you to BL.

Monday, July 07, 2008

An apple a day???

Bought these apples this morning at BigLand.
.59 cents each.
I'm not familiar with apple prices, it does seem to be on the high side, but then so are many things up here.
That is a standard box of matches in the middle.
Further on the price of milk; I had one of my crack researchers in Quebec City get me the price for milk down that a way.
Two liters of 3.25% cost $3.79. 2% cost $3.69 and 1% cost $3.59.
So I guess the difference is the shipping by road and plane, maybe an extra mark up by the handlers.
Whoa: I must apologize to BigLand, their apples are reasonable compared to Northern Apple prices, there they range from .72 cents to .78 cents each. The Northern ones are maybe larger in size, and more variety, but on the whole they are not in very good shape, soft, bruised, some wrinkled, yuk.

Sunday, July 06, 2008

The warm fog-less spell is most welcome. Almost balmy like, a nice breeze keeps the flies at bay. It has been up to 20 at the house, 17 and 18 official.

Friday night saw the belated Canada Day fireworks. It seemed to me to be the best coordinated fire works display put on to date. The finale was especially colorful and prolonged.

A barge loaded down with heavy equipment, a rock crusher and material for the new subdivision arrived at the dock yesterday.
Budgell’s Equipment of Triton has the contract. Judging by the amount of heavy equipment they have on hand they are going to have at it in a big way.

The increase in the price of milk is causing a kafuffle on the island. I was hoping because we get our milk, eggs and dairy products from Quebec that we would be spared. Silly me.

CBC Here& Now did a short piece on the cost of milk on the coast of Labrador Friday night.
It was ill researched but they did give to cost of milk in three communities, Nain, Hopedale and Rigolet. Of course Nain was given as the highest, $6.39 for 2 liters.

Here is the actual price of milk in two stores as of yesterday. All are per 2 liters.

Northern: 3.25%-$6.49. 2%-$6.39. 1%-$6.29.

BigLand. 2%-$5.79. 1%-$5.79.

To be fair to BigLand they have kept the price of milk at or about the same price for over 12 months while it has crept up at Northern.

In the absence of an audit of food costs covered under the subsidy programs it is not clear if BigLand is taking a loss, breaking even or what.

It has been said that the retailers on the coast can’t buy their milk wholesale for the price that some retailers sell it for on the Island. All the wholesalers of these dairy products for the coast are based in Happy Valley-Goose Bay

Worth a look at IMO.

Friday, July 04, 2008

Indulge me OK!

So after many delays [reasons various] GD has finely completed her short x country this morning, we are all quite thrilled an proud. She was in the air around 1 1/4 hours. By the look of this it was a triangle pattern Deseronto-Kingston-Tweed.

Fog free at last.

The Astron docked about 7.30, unloading straight away, the tide and mechanical gods all aligned.

Still a lot a cloud but the temperatures are up in the mid teens, very nice morning, and quite when I took these pictures.

I have a little anecdote to relay [beef].
So there is very little choice of potatoes in town all week. One store has only rubbish left and the other store has some but they are tasteless.

So the plan in summer is for non perishable vegetables to come in on the boat, the Northern Ranger usually.

So I go into one store on Thursday and ask if any fresh spuds in yet, actually I gave them two weeks before I asked.
The manager buzzed down to the warehouse, no spuds came in on the boat. That is three trips of the Northern Ranger and no spuds.

I ran into the manager on the road later in the day, he said that 7 bags of spuds were being taken out to the airport and they would come in on the food by mail flight later that evening.

Well the food by mail flight did come in, no spuds on it I found out this AM. So still no spuds with the weekend here.
This is the sort of stuff that is dished out to the coast by Happy Valley Goose Bay businesses all the time, I think I may have mentioned that before.

Another beef: Blue berries in the Northern Store this morning are $4.99 a punnet. Same size punnet at BigLand are selling for $6.99. I’m sure I could find similar anomalies some visa versa.

Now these are shipped in under the food by mail subsidy, maybe both are legitimate prices, maybe not. That is why the powers that be were asked to do an audit of how the food subsidies are working. It has been 12 months since we asked for this audit, nothing done to date to my knowledge.
Further to the potato famine, sorry shortage.
So I walk into said store this afternoon, one of the staff say that their potato's arrived finely.
I go up to the vegetable section and there are loose spuds, clean and various sizes. I ponder about buying any as they have been flown in.
Seeing I was asking for them, and need them, I pick out 10 spuds of a nice size and up to the check out.
The check out said they these are $3.99 a Kg and that will be eight bucks something.
I pondered for about a second and said no thanks I'll take them back. That's OK said the staff member. I'll do that.
Paying [so blatantly] for others incompetence's is hard to swallow, Ill be having rice with that for the next little while, I stocked up on that.

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Typical skyline of late, after the fog clears that is.

No fog this morning, just cloudy, quite warm last night relatively speaking [about 10] so we may not see the fog roll in, fingers x.
Happy Valley Goose Bay had 30 yesterday, and Hopedale was up to 22.