You know, there's times that I'm quite happy to be living in a small place. While Iqaluit is the big city in Nunavut, we still have a pretty small town feel - everyone knows everyone, and there's no such thing as a secret (which is not always great - I mean, what if you get herpes?? Gah!).
This week was one of those times that I'm proud to be Nunavumuit. There was a terrible, terrible fire here this week. I'm sure you heard about it, or saw pictures, or smelled it in the air.
The apartment that my darling lived in before he moved in with me is gone.
I had a debate with myself about talking about the fire, and the conclusion I came to is, I'm not going to talk about the tragic side, I'm going to talk about the wonderful things. Everyone knows about the tragic stuff, the deaths, the losses, the horrifying aftermath for those who lost everything. But there is so much good to this story, it couldn't be looked past.
I happened to be in Ottawa when this happened. My friend and I took the urgent need list, went to walmart and bought out the place, and by the time I went to donate it, I was turned away. What a wonderful thing, to be turned away because they have so much, so many people gave, and gave (I just donated the stuff to other people in need - the ones that never stop needing).
My dear friends at the Iqaluit fire department made us all so proud. These people stood, and worked, and fought in -50 for 15 hours, some for longer. Have you ever done anything for 15 hours, let alone something so hard? I know I haven't. These firefighters, these friends of mine, make me proud to be a friend. One woman, a friend in the nursing program, told me about how she almost fell asleep sitting on the fire hose. Imagine how tired, how drained she must have felt to be ABLE to fall asleep in those conditions.
A man named Pierre Wolfe walked in circles around the fire site for 24 hours, in an effort to collect money for the victims. He raised over $3000 on his own.
A large group of musicians held a benefit concert, that was put together in haste by a wonderful, caring human being name Jason Devries. They raised over $5600. I also understand the roof may have been raised on that one (see what I did there?).
How lucky are we, those who have so much?