Xavier Kataquapit

Live And Let Live

Create: 12/01/2015 - 19:41

I was shocked recently while at the cottage when I discovered a tragic sight near the entrance to the garage. The overturned remains of a nest sat next to three tiny chicks on the ground. It was a nest made by 'Pepeshchel' – the Robin. It was a sad sight to see the three tiny creatures fighting for life. They had landed next to an ant hill and the insects were crawling over the vulnerable little intruders. My friend Mike and I decided to take matters into our own hands and we rounded up the surviving chicks.

A Growing Idea

Create: 12/01/2015 - 19:41

I love this time of the year. It is the middle of summer and I have a great selection of fruits and vegetables to choose from here in Ontario. It is great to be able to dine on fresh salads with cucumbers, tomatoes, lettuce, green, red and yellow peppers; onions, broccoli and cauliflower. This is the only time of the year that I have easy access to all this fresh produce grown locally or just a few hours to the south.

Keep On Trucking

Create: 12/01/2015 - 19:40

I drove the half ton back to the house today. This old Ford is a beat up work horse of a truck that serves mainly as basic transport these days rather than something I would take on a long trip. Tonight I didn't have far to go and it was a pleasure to amble alone down the highway late in the evening. The falling sun bled a ruby red in the sky and the lakes and rivers on my way reflected the crimson shimmering glow.

Heat wave

Create: 12/01/2015 - 19:40

Black flies and mosquitoes of the North are not so bad
I took some time this summer to travel to southern cities and towns in Ontario.
Unfortunately for me, I timed my visits during some of the hottest days of the year. I also drove an older vehicle that did not have air conditioning. I was miserable most of the time as I slowly crawled along the bumper-to-bumper, heavy southern Ontario traffic under blistering hot conditions.

A Visit From Mikisew

Create: 12/01/2015 - 19:40

I spent some time in the deep forest this past week. It felt great to breathe in the fresh air and to stir the coals of a fire while the weather turned cool and wet. One morning, a young eagle, or mikisew in the Cree language, glided over head and began to screech and cry as I stood amongst the tall pine. No doubt he was not happy at my incursion into his domain. He kept circling and crying overhead as I went about my work around the camp.

Far back along the trail

Create: 12/01/2015 - 19:40

I enjoy listening to my dad Marius reminisce about his early life on the land around Attawapiskat. His family settled along the banks of the Attawapiskat River and they travelled regularly along the shores, tributaries and mushkeg surrounding the community. He grew up in a big family of seven brothers and one sister during a time when our people were still following a nomadic lifestyle on the land.

NAPS detachment opens in Mattagami

Create: 12/01/2015 - 19:40

Mattagami First Nation celebrated the grand opening of a new Nishnawbe-Aski Police Services (NAPS) detachment building in its community Aug. 19.
In recent years, NAPS detachment buildings have been developed as prefabricated buildings and imported into First Nations. However, through lobbying and co-operative efforts, the community was able to construct the building from scratch and also provided some employment opportunities to members of Mattagami.

Of Mice and Men

Create: 12/01/2015 - 19:39

It is four in the morning, the room is dark and quiet as I lie still in my bed. I am in a cabin in the wilderness and in complete silence except that I can hear scurrying and scratching in the walls. The sounds move from the ceiling to my right, then shuffle overhead and disappear off to my left. A mouse or wahpookoosheesh, in the Cree language, has made his home in the crudely built plywood and insulated walls of the cabin I have rented. There are more than enough cracks, holes and broken boards in the building to allow a tiny mouse to crawl through these spaces.

Nomadic blood feeds travel bug

Create: 12/01/2015 - 19:39

I have been travelling overseas and across Canada now for several years. I enjoy moving from place to place. I think the need to see new places comes from my people's nomadic tradition of moving over the land regularly as a matter of survival. For the past ten years or so, I have regularly travelled to places in Europe, Asia, parts of the United States and Canada.

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