Monday, January 25, 2010

North To The Future

Since my last post, there's been a lot of talk among my friends about the definition of living life, especially among the 'explorers.'

They say that it means that you wake up one day at 8 a.m., say "I think I'll go to Tibet today," and by 9 a.m. they have tickets waiting for them at the terminal.

Some say it's about always saying 'yes.' Want to try this weird squid dish? Sure. Feel like sky diving? Why not.

Others say it's about not knowing, just getting from the day to day with a wide open mind and see what comes down the road.

And of course there are those who believe in just working hard and sticking to a moral code.

I feel like I live by an uneven combination of all of them, with varying degrees. It's how I went from a target run, to having a nice dinner out at a Latin fusion restaurant by day, Latin rave club by night place, to seeing Kathy Griffin live to getting into the swanky rooftop club at the W hotel over looking the White House gardens on Saturday night.

But anyway, I bring this up because I read a story about the census today that struck a chord with me.

The U.S. Census Bureau has already begun the 2010 census in Alaska by going door-to-door, starting with the village of Noorvik in the frigid North, even though the rest of the nation will start off with getting census papers in the mail around March 15.

Why the special treatment? Two main reasons: one being the census officials are traveling by dog sled -- the easiest way to get around up there -- throughout the northern parts of the state and the ice will be too thawed to ride on by March. The other is many of the villagers are off on hunting and fishing trips during March and are gone for weeks at a time. They're not at home to fill out papers.

So the U.S. government is accommodating a few hundred people in the frozen tundra so these villagers can continue to live their lives the way they want to, to make a living and survive uninterrupted.

What an incredible way to live.

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