I spent the entirety of this Labour Day long-weekend moving into my new apartment in Fort Smith. On Friday and Saturday I tied up loose ends at the hotel I was staying at and then on Sunday I moved in, along with the moving company delivering all of my worldly goods from storage elsewhere in town.
The moving company quickly dropped everything off into my two-bedroom unit and left me to my own devices. The unfortunate part is that my landlord did not have time to remove the furniture that was here before I arrived. He gave me an option to have it furnished or unfurnished. I chose the latter because my family and I decided to maximize the use of the truck the Government of the Northwest Territories provided. The way my apartment is set up one could move in with his/her clothes and be okay.
Needless to say the initial phases are and will be quite cluttered. The most obvious point is the couch sitting in my hallway, because there is really no where to put it. Luckily I managed to square most of it away pretty easily.
In case I failed to mention in my last post, autumn is definitely here in the Northwest Territories. By the technical definition autumn arrives the same time everywhere, but the weather has shifted and conditions are beginning to change. When I arrived in mid-August the cool summer Ontario and Fort Smith were having were basically identical. Since that time the leaves have begun to change, and the weekly forecast includes highs between 16 and 26 and lows between 2 and 12 degrees Celsius. My phone indicates that it is 8 degrees out at the moment and going down to about 1. The walk to work should be fun. It is pretty common for the morning to start off in the low teens or single digits and reach the twenties in the afternoon. It makes it hard to dress accordingly.
Today is also the first day of school. I am sure the process is basically the same here as it is elsewhere in Canada. As I’ve said to friends, how normal life is here has surprised me. It isn’t so different in Fort Smith than any other place I’ve been. I may begin to sing a different tune when winter arrives in November, but this is a far less alien place than I anticipated at first.
One thing I have already noticed is the prominence of a few personalities. If you’ve ever watched a TV show set in a small town it seems like a dozen or so people own everything, hold all the influential positions, and know everybody. While I’m still getting acquainted with the community I have already met about six people who fit that bill. For example, one of my hoteliers was the mayor for 15 years. In Hay River the MLA owns a whole bunch of the local businesses. Suddenly I can ease off on those shows for authenticity rather than weak writing, but only a little.
Sadly, the worst part of the move is the end of my internet access until the provider hooks me up (and the room service). I’ll do my best to keep posting until I get set up. Also, I hope to have a final answer about the future of my blog from HR this week. Fingers crossed.