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Archive for July, 2012

With my 75th birthday coming up The Autumn of My Years ( as Frank Sinatra sings) have truly arrived. Thinking about this while browsing through a bookshop I found this gem of a story.

The story is based on an Athabascan Indian legend passed along for many generations from mothers to daughters of the upper Yukon River area in Alaska.

Two Old Women are left behind by their People as they are starving from hunger and feel they can not longer sustain them.

Ch’idzigyaak and Sa’ – 80 and 75 years old – are shocked and very angry by this, but after a few days they come to a decision. They are going to make an efford to survive.

Their motto : Let us die trying!”

What follows is this absolutely amazing story of relying on their intuition and survival experiences learned when they were young. They set out for a place they remember having a lot of wild animals and take more then two weeks to get there facing the long Polar night, low temperatures and incredible physical hardship.making snowshoes

Making snowshoes

                                Arriving at their new Camp

What is needed to survive and prepare for the coming winter in the short summer is byond believing. But their physical  condition improves considerably in the process and they manage to supply themselves with an abundance of extra food for their second winter.

The People meanwhile are on the brink of death. Guilt and sorrow caused by their decision to have left The Old Ones undermines the morale and finally the Counsel decides that – having discovered that The Old Women have moved and might have survived – send out their Trackers to find them. They do and – after tough negociations dominated by fear by The Two –  The People are allowed to settle close by under strick regulations. Thanks to the Old Womens supplies the People survive.

The lessons learned by The People : You better respect and learn from The Old Ones instead of discarding them..as they have the Knowlegde, Wisdom and Patience.

Thank you Ch’idzigyaak and Sa’ for giving me Hope and Inspiration and I promise you now :

 ” I will  die trying”   and like you both  ” die a truly happy Old Woman”  

exactly the way your Story ends.

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