Sometimes it's a disadvantage not being a girly girl. Take for instance the distinct lack of pantyhose in my house yesterday evening when I desperately needed some to strain the seeds and stems off my gallon of frozen wild chokecherries. A woolen sock just wouldn't do. Instead I had to fashion something using a sterile gaze bandage pad from my first aid kit and a bit of twine. Well, it's not as neat as the pantyhose would have been but it will do as I'm certainly not about to go out and buy pantyhose. I plop the bundle into hot roiling water and muse whether or not I should add more cranberries to my hot cider. I should be sleeping, trying to overcome this nasty cold I've come down with, but instead I'm trying to bake the contents of my freezer.
Since there are no jobs to be had in this Small Town South of the Permafrost in the winter at all, as the whole thing has more or less shut down, and won't be any jobs in my field any time soon here in particular, I've decided to move. I've brought up the subject rather tactfully among friends here who all immediately respond that staying in Small Town South of the Permafrost without a job would be, well, suicide. I hadn't wanted to point that out but it seems that everybody comes to the same conclusion. Darkness, wetness, and isolation have a negative impact on the mind without a compelling distraction and I can't exactly afford the rent and the heat in this place without an income. So I'm off to, er, somewhere. The current plan is to schlep all my stuff to storage in Los Anchorage and then fly to my parents' in the Western Lower 48 (USA) with both of the Disreputables for x-mas as planned long ago. After that I'm not really sure. One thing is for sure, both Los Anchorage & Parents' Town in the Western Lower 48 both have more winter job opportunities to tide me over until I get a REAL job (i.e. in my field) then my current location.
Which leads me to my freezer. I've decided I'm going to try and use up and eat as much as I can of it's contents. Which may prove to be a challenge. In between hacking, chest-searing coughs I rummage through the contents: huckleberries, low-bush cranberries, high-bush cranberries, blueberries, nangoon berries, raspberries, bear berries, chokecherries, puffball mushrooms, lentil soup, mushroom soup, rhubarb, bean soup, jalapenos, stacks and stacks of halibut & salmon, clams, Bing cherries, red cabbage, a lone package of moose burger. The only thing in there I didn't harvest myself are the jalapenos & the Bing cherries. I'm not worried about the fish, anything I don't manage to eat I'll just take with me which will delight my father & sister. But the berries! I think there is going to be a lot of baking around here in the next few weeks along with packages showing up on the doorsteps and desks of friends and aquaintences.