Thursday, August 14, 2008

Well Well Well

I'm back in Alaska now. My brain is overwhelmed with thoughts of summer memories and love and conquering the rush of returning responsibility that is teaching in the bush. I have so much to catch up on about the family vacation to Hawaii, Flowmotion's Summer Meltdown and much more but I'll get to that in due time.

Right now I'm sitting in my crappy new apartment thats set up and built like a 'L' shaped architectural skrew up drinking pomegranate tea and listening to "This American Life" feeling melancholy and alone. The butterflies I felt last year didn't happen this time, but rather a odd sense of familiarity for a far away land that no one can really comprehend without seeing it for themselves. I had to explain all about my life up here so many times to people over the summer that my sense of wonder and pride of the life I've built here became abstract stories of my mind that I sort of resented. Now I'm back in this bizarre world with a new principal, a new set of colleagues and new set of disasters and challenges to deal with.

The positive thing is that my blog is back, I packed my summer so full of adventure that I didn't have time to document it, rather just live life. I think Neal Cassady once told Jack Kerouac that there are two types of people in the world, those who document their lives and those who just live them so fully that they cannot. It appears I've made the switch back to the former.

I don't know how many readers I lost over the summer, but I'm grateful for those of you that stuck around and held on knowing that I would return once again to the type of place where intense solitude can produce the type and volume of life realizations and commentary you have all grown so use two. I'll do my best to continue providing this service to you while also servicing that internal need I have to rationalize my life through sharing words with all those that care to listen.

I'm trying hard to redefine my role here in Mekoryuk. I've realized that I'm needed and appreciated here in the District and school. I also worry that people will feel the void of my absence if I choose not to return for a third year. But with no prospect of friends my age, romance of any kind, or a community that I can never truly become a empirical part of, I have to acknowledge that this might not be the best place for me to spend the greater part of my waning youth. So for now, my goals are to effect what change I can in the district as well as teach those around me how to carry the lessons I believe so heavily in even in the absence of the person that showed them how to look at things in a different way. I want to teach my students self reliance, how to affect change in a broken system, and how to advocate for their needs. The major goal being that if I don't come back, they can carry on regardless. I'm not that important but I can already feel the guilt and guilt is no reason to stay in a place where you don't feel complete.

Who knows...? Maybe this will be the best year of my life, maybe I will become a dedicated bush teacher hell bent on coming back for twenty years. Right now I just don't know though.

In my short life I've not always been known for my positivity, only here in Alaska people really seem to feel that is the case. This blog and the accountibility that comes with authoring a concept such as "Radiate Warmth" has been a constant reminder to practice what I preach. So I need to remember that I am a positive person, I can be one with practice and that moments of somber feelings like now don't last forever. After all positivity in the bush is a necessity as real as a good parka or dry socks.

I'm gonna get back to my recliner and my radio programs. Is anyone still out there? Is anyone still reading? I hope so and I hope to hear from all of you soon once again.

Peace my friends.


Sally Navarre said...

Hey Kale, Welcome back to Mekoryuk!! It's your new mentor speaking(and I am a new mentor as I have been teaching in rural AK the past 21 years.) Looking forward to meeting you out there on Nunivak Island, a place I have always wanted to visit. From reading your blog I must say the village is very lucky to have you. Enjoy the fall and weather permitting, I will see you soon. Sally

Mr. Broz said...

Hey man, I am still kicking around out here and looking forward to the resuming posts. I want to throw something out there for you to think about, I had a professor who I engaged over many cups of coffee and he was a firm believer in the various senses of self that we have to develop in order to obtain a balance. He stressed physical, sexual, professional, and social sense of self development as the driving forces of our lives. Out here I will agree there seems to be an imbalance in these senses, but here is where some creativity comes in. i was recently watching Apollo 13 and I was struck by a couple of scenes, one was when the team on the ground was given an odd box of components and was told to make an air purifier out of them. They were told that "failure was not an option gentlemen," and they were able to construct what they needed. So here is what I am giving you to chew on, evaluate the components you have, and get creative, how can you develop those senses of self you feel are lacking? And although you don't have the lives of three astronauts riding on your shoulders, your own sanity should be enough to convince you that "failure is not option."

Susan Iverson said...

Well, how easily we fall into the comfortable ways of the world. I believe there are many people just waiting for this blog to get back to the regular updates we all know and love. I sense a difference in you this year. You seem a little more content and yes, it has to be said, positive. I hope you got the packages I sent already. They are only the first of many to come over the next four months before you return.

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