Saturday, November 19, 2016


At times, when playing outside when the northern lights were at their most active the kids would be more subdued than usual. Even the adults didn’t want to yell or exhibited an extra aura of fear in their speech. They didn’t want to say anything negative nor tick off the old religion ancient native deities while they were doing their thing and going about their usual daily life routine. Being under the amazing display in the heavens was now not regarded as special anymore to the locals who live in that area since they have seen it so many times each year, every year just like a holiday season. It was just part of the routine in contrast to the tourists who were fascinated by its newness. An apt description by the elders would be like an animal’s tail whipping against the sky while creating sparks at the same time. Mekkar has never bothered to research what the Northern Lights phenomenon really is in its true scientific state. The reason could be possibly to native superstitions or a set of beliefs in legends passed down to him from a few adults in the village. [; Aurora hunters -;; Wikipedia;;]  

However, Mekkar could never completely discount and shun the old ways because they had been ingrained internally into the very fabric of his being. Plus, when Mekkar was younger during times on the reindeer trek, he spent much time with Aslak, and they would together ponder the mysteries of the universe. However, Mekkar at other times would try to avoid Aslak when the elder would be in his trance-like state or conducting his medicine man duties. Mekkar would get spooked and creeped out by the unfamiliar other realm spiritual stuff the boy saw and referred to it as such. The Native from the North could sense, even though he couldn’t always describe it, the power Aslak had during some of their verbal interaction sessions. Other times, Mekkar would sneakily or stealthily so he thought, observe various leader meeting of the minds sessions during the animal migrations. No matter if whether he comprehended it or not, Mekkar realized that there was a whole other unseen realm/dimension that he didn’t understand. Even after being around Aslak for so long in the small village and seeing some of these activities, Mekkar wanted to stay away. Especially from some of the deeper aspects which he felt would impact him. He felt getting involved with those aspects was playing with fire and Mekkar didn’t want to get burned. At this point, the Arctic boy still didn’t comprehend what was really taking place at these sessions and scared at the possible effects upon him.

Alf called it by what he thought it was, Mekkar’s insolence, and Alf didn’t feel that Mekkar cared one bit about the old ways and mannerisms of their native culture. Even though Alf shied away from admitting that he was a native altogether. Alf felt that Mekkar also was not concerned about ticking off the old native religious deities. Alf, Mekkar’s younger brother, had even said this a few times previously by describing Mekkar as having a smart mouth and manner of speech. The sibling stated that it was also getting worse by the day as Mekkar got older. Mekkar thought this was an unjustified perception of him by his sibling considering that Alf rarely admitted his native status to avoid persecution and negative judgment by others. Mekkar commented that his brother could get away with this due to his non-native appearance. Alf would go on to describe that his older sibling as showing early hints of a screw you attitude towards the world in some aspects of Mekkar’s character. Mekkar thought Alf was sort of judgmental against him when he was attempting to avoid that very thing from outsiders. Alf had pointed out, what he thought was the recognition of these flaws regarding Mekkar to his face. Still, Mekkar just brushed them aside and attributed those comments as just part of sibling rivalry issues.

Mekkar feels that no being, high or low, or person should receive automatic respect from him because of one’s position in life or occupation, no matter who they are. He knows that his belief in that area is extremely contrary to most people. To Mekkar, one has to earn his respect on an individual case by case basis. Mekkar also has this concept, that he is so well adjusted enough and has a fairly good level of knowledge of the world, as a result of his travels, reading, and through other methods of learning. Mekkar reveals this attitude and point in one of many blunt statements, “If I don’t know who you are, then you are not a star. It doesn’t matter who or how big or famous you think you are.” Mekkar knows this is a cocky stance and refuses to back down from it and this thinking has never wavered in Mekkar’s mind even to this very day and it will definitely never change with him.

On the other hand, Alf and Lasse both are of the opinion that there is just a little too much cockiness on the part of Mekkar. When they noticed that trend, they increased the amount of pranks they would play on him. The idea was to try to temper that big ego they feel is growing too quickly and put him in his place. Basically, Mekkar’s younger brother and best friend think Mekkar is full of himself most of the time and just likes to run his mouth. Other adults regard it as a matter of a teenager who thinks that they know everything and are always right about everything. But, adults usually know that is not the case and have learned from experience that the opposite is true. If a person is honest, what parent hasn’t encountered that in their children, especially teenagers, anywhere on the planet?

Sunday, November 6, 2016


Not long after Mekkar started working, more expectations & increased responsibilities were placed upon him. Mama would tell Mekkar that if he wanted clean clothes, he would now have to wash them himself since now he was old enough to start helping out the family around the house too! So, at his young age, little Mekkar would go collect the washboard along with his dirty clothes and cleaning supplies and head down to the calmer, but still flowing part of the river to wash his clothes by scrubbing them on the board that was propped up against him and in an up and down motion. Mekkar had selected a location of the river that was not the same area where he and his friends would catch fish. After all, he didn’t want to get swept away by the river’s current but needed enough flow to send the soapiness down the river. Mekkar’s mind was very focused on his task at hand, because one slip-up and he or one of the items he was washing might be gone for good by floating down the river. He would be expected to go through his whole basket of clothes, however, there were some delicate items that needed to be specially cleaned, but not dry cleaned, and that were exempt from the board less they be ruined.

Sometimes, his mama would blurt out as a reminder to him that “the washer and dryer is not for your personal use, their operation had a priority that was for the business. You could use it for items related to the family restaurant and tourist businesses and usually when you were working only. It’s for the tourists and those working in the business, not for you and your friends,” his mama bellowed. These privileges were extended only when functions related to the family and work were involved. Mekkar’s mama would also rebuke him, when he would share reindeer meat that was drying on the line with his friends, saying “leave some for the rest of us, the ones who worked through the process from raising the animals to drying/curing the meat to make it edible for human consumption, otherwise it will all be gone!” Part of the reasoning was that it was a management of the reindeer meat resources, so there was an account of where it was all going. Some to the tourists that ate in the restaurant, some for family enjoyment, and then have a bit to share with a few others. But, she knew that if the decision was left up to Mekkar the meat would have been all gone quickly with a very limited number of people enjoying the rich and tasty morsels of this delicacy.

Even when Mekkar’s family stopped being nomadic on a greater basis and became more permanent with a family home, things were still highly organized. The main meal of the day, was usually in the middle of the afternoon, about 2pm or so, and the preparation of the dinner table was important. No, the people do eat buffet style meals on a daily basis, just on a few specific holiday occasions and that is only a few times per year. This tradition is even more pronounced normally down in the south part of the country where the national culture reigns supreme, because if the natives ate like that every day they would be way too overweight, 600 lbs each, and would never get any work done. The preparation work for wintertime is always part of the life cycle that is a part of life in the Arctic environment. Each of the children was expected to clean and set up the family table, specifically their own items required to consume food with. Each kid, in Mekkar’s family, had their own plate, bowl, cup, fork, spoon, and knife individually engraved, marked, or labeled with their initials or something similar in regard to marking. If the utensils were not cleaned or setup ready for and prior to dinner time then they didn’t get to eat dinner. Mekkar had to learn this lesson the hard way a few times at first, but because he didn’t relish missing the best and most abundant meal of the day, he wised up fast. It was no fun to miss meals, especially good and tasty ones, and watch his family munch away without him. 

It wasn’t like Mekkar could order pizza with a few toppings down the street, from the local eatery, and then be able to sneak it by his mama without her knowing. His mama would remind him, once in awhile, with statements such as “I am a mother and that means that I am All-Knowing and All-Seeing.” She inferred this comment in regards to him on a personal level. Mekkar would respond in his mind like Oh! I can’t do anything without getting caught. Thus, Mekkar started to suspect that maybe his mama had special powers like Aslak the shaman. Mekkar already knew Aslak pretty well, due to quite a bit of interaction with him in the village, so Mekkar thought that he knew that his mama was not a shaman or one with that type of ability herself, but maybe he was wrong.

Mekkar just thought that she was a bit cocky and now knew where he received this character trait from. Mekkar’s mama, Sirga, didn’t put up with any grief from anybody and had a no nonsense personality, another trait that he acquired from his mama. The Native from the North knew that as a boy, he would be a person that would push the limits of his mama’s patience. It was kind of a game with him, in his subconscious mind that he wasn’t always aware of. However, Mekkar always knew when he crossed the line and Sirga’s wrath would be exposed in regard to him. When she would yell out first the dog’s name, his bother’s full name, and then his full name, all 6 of them, in a strong, ticked off manner; He knew that his rear end was cooked and he was in real trouble. Sometimes, his reaction to his short tempered mama’s fierce anger was to get as far away as possible and go down to the river. Another option was to go to a friend’s house for awhile, even at times for days. While leaving to avoid his mama’s wrath, he would respond with an unwise comment or a distaining gesture. Sirga would yell once in a while, “If you go to your best friend Lasse’s house I will have his mother beat your butt for me”. In that small town or village, Mekkar felt that he never could escape his mother’s punishment whether it was warranted or not. Maybe, this was the beginning of the worldwide adventure streak developing within Mekkar.

In another instance, Mekkar would at times leave his toys around the house and scattered throughout his room after playing with them and his mama would bark at him to “pick up your toys or I will throw them out”. On a few occasions, Mekkar would ignore the bark from his mama. Unfortunately, the bite was worse because his mama would carry out her threat and throw the toys away in the trash. Then, Mekkar would get spanked and his mama would sometimes use anything she could grab close by to do it with, a large kitchen spoon, a book, a wooden piece, etc. Other times, she would force Mekkar to go get a tree branch or a stick for his own butt whipping and if the stick or branch was too small or not strong enough, she would keep sending him back out until she was satisfied. Mainly, the punishment would occur for not obeying her and Mekkar would receive another round of the spanking from his papa with his extremely large hands that would resonate with a loud crack on Mekkar’s behind. The second punishment was due to Henrik, Mekkar’s papa, being upset because he would to reconstruct and recreate some of the freshly discarded toys. Mainly, because Mekkar’s papa would make some of the toys by hand-crafting, carving, & cutting them from wood. Plus, that would Henrik’s time away from other needed to completed projects, whether they related to his papa’s work or not. Projects such as various to-do tasks around the property because there seems to always be something that requires fixing, it is never all finished.