Sunday, November 13, 2011

Alaska Storm Reveals Different World

When there's a big storm, local quirks come to the surface more than when the weather is calmer.

Here in Vermont, we'll see snowboarders zigzag down the steep hill on Main Street in Burlington.  Venizen will turn up at the emergency shelter if the storm hits during hunting season, or kick surfers will fly around in Lake Champlain even if the water and air termperature are just 40 degrees.
An image from that big storm in Alaska last week

In Alaska, which had a huge storm last week, we have the following dispatch from Associated Press reporter Rachel D'Oro.

"Hardy Alaskans turned to ingenuity, cooperation, and in some cases, native culture to deal with the worst storm on the state's western coast in almost four decades.

Before the monster hit, hunters in one village dismantled drift racks used to dry seal and fish. Others along the state's western coast performed traditional Eskimo dances seeking good weather. Some brought subsistence comfort foods like caribou and bowhead whale blubber to share at village emergency shelters.
Still others tended to large sled dog teams by turning their dog houses away from the hurricane-force winds that hammered the weather-whipped region.
When the northwest Alaska village of Point Hope lost power in the barreling storm, locals in the whaling community lined their vehicles along a runway and used their headlights and emergency flashers to help a plane carrying repair workers land safely."

Next time we get a big storm in Vermont, I'll surely stock up on bowhead whale blubber!


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