In This Issue....
|From the Editor....
"It Depends on Us... Another year lies before us like an unwritten page, an unspent coin, an unwalked road. The pages will read, what treasures will be gained in exchange for time, or what we find along the way, will largely depend on us."
Well, once again here we are at that familiar crossroads… another calendar year is nearly behind us and this issue of The Fan Hitch looks ahead as we begin our ninth publishing year; one more excuse to wax philosophic. Been there, done that many times.
One the other hand, this issue does contain articles about looking back and ahead. In Mark Brazeau's piece "Defining the Inuit Sled Dog", he describes how Qimmiit Utirtut, the reintroduction of the pure Inuit Sled Dog to Nunavik, is looking to the program's future success by seeking from Inuit Elders their experiences of the past. After all, their wisdom and skills, gained by personal experiences as well as handed down to them by many generations of their hunter-gatherer ancestors, must not be taken lightly nor disregarded. Mark's interviews with two Elders are gems, and I hope The Fan Hitch can become a treasure trove of similar dialogues. We have so much to learn from them.
The December Fan Hitch also celebrates the past of some hard working Inuit Sled Dogs in Antarctica and looks towards the not-too-distant future when it is hoped they can be appropriately honored. In previous issues of our journal, you have read extraordinary stories by the dog men of the British Antarctic Survey, still known as "Fids" (Falkland Islands Dependency Survey). In this issue's "A Time to Remember the Dogs" by Fids veteran, Hwfa Jones, you will learn how these dog drivers wish to set the record straight about what ultimately happened to their dogs and, more importantly, why they are keen to create a lasting tribute to their remarkable four-legged colleagues. You will find out how you can help the Fids reach their goal.
Even John Senter's "Tip for the Trail" takes on the subject of looking back and forward, in this case both at the same time… well, sort of.
So, I guess this time of year continues to serve as a reminder - a time to take stock of our past (recent and distant), to look ahead to the future (near and long term), while we try to enjoy the present that is this holiday season. I hope yours is all that you want it to be.
Wishing you smooth ice and narrow leads,