We've got pics for you guys, I swear!! Unfortunately, they're being held hostage in our camera until we can pick up some more AA batteries in town. But we cleared a few more yards and have gotten at least half-way through building our tent platform. That's going slower than expected since two of the batteries for our cordless power tools decided to die on us, leaving us with only one to do all the cuts... that's a two-hour limit on sawing and drilling at the moment. *SIGH* one more thing to remember to buy on our next trip to Home Labyrinth 9along with a generator)!
We extended our stay in the rental cabin by a week since we've had some lumber issues and lots of rain delaying our progress. I can work in the rain for a few hours, but when it's nearly freezing and you can't feel your fingers anymore, using a nail and hammer is a really bad idea. Plus, all that muskeg marshy mossy crap might look dry... but when you step on it, you quickly get engulfed with a few gallons of water. Oh well, it'll all be frozen solid in a month or two and we won't have to worry about it for a few months :)
We decided against building a winter "shack" and are just going to stay in the wall tent. As insurance, we are trading for a cord of seasoned firewood for emergencies, and will have enough spare lumber on site to build a quickie shack if it starts getting a little too cold for comfort. Of course, we can always come back in and rent the cabin since a lot of people leave the village in the winter and it's not really high on the list of winter tourist destinations! Worse comes to worst, we can always wrap the tent in Visqueen (6 mil plastic sheeting) which is the real Alaskan building material next to a myriad of blue plastic tarps! (ok, we have 3 blue tarps, two brown ones and a green one... but they all count!)
We went to the wedding reception for a local couple last night and had a pretty good time. I think we met most of everyone, at least by sight. You know I'm horrible with names! We sampled some local delicacies (salmon "caviar" and moose balls) and I got to do a little boogie-woogie on the dance floor to stay warm. It was nice to be invited and included into the community.
We're back into Fairbanks in the morning. Originally, we were going on Tuesday when the platform was done, but Celine (our fat kitty) seems to be down with something and we have to take her into the vet to get her checked out. Oh well... we can grab a bunch of stuff (like the tent) while we're in town and drop it off at the property. After all, we have plenty of tarps to keep everything dry until we get it all set up. The baby girl's health is more important than our anticipated schedule. Hopefully the weather will clear up a little for the road trip. Would be nice to get just a couple more sunny days so we can get stuff all set up for winter without drowning.
Once the tent is set up, we'll move into that and then go scavenge all the dead standing dry firewood we have on the property (and there is plenty for sure!). And slowly filling our winter water tank 10 gallons at a time (since that's all I can comfortably carry). Chop wood, carry water to the extreme!
The view from our "bedroom" window is the hills to the north, and the view from our "living room" is acres and acres of spruce forest. Ahhhh.... life is good! :D