I’m at an Open Space conference in Grande Ronde, Oregon which is a summit of Tribal leaders and federal government agencies from around the Pacific Northwest of the USA, and Alaska. Â The subject of the meeting is improving relations around environmental issues.
As we were wrapping up our action planning session this morning, a young man walked into the room who I hadn’t yet met. Â He apologized for being late. Â He got delayed on the way in.
“No problem,” I said. Â “What was the delay all about?”
“Oh, I live near Nome Alaska and we were out hunting. Â Got a bearded seal and a walrus. Â They’re about 45 miles offshore on some ice floes and it took us a while to get them back. Â I’ve got to get back and get it dried and frozen and then go out and get a beluga. Â Some good open water now and the whales are only a mile off shore.”
I just looked at him. Â What can you say to that?
“Yeah, and on top of that, I’ve never been out of state before and I can’t believe how cheap things are down here. Â These sunglasses I just bought for 13 bucks would cost me 50 at home. Â I’m going to pick up a laptop and a necklace for my girl.”