What do you wish more Canadians knew about life here?
“That the people are amazing, very creative, and innovative.”
Where is your favourite place in the territory?
“Besides where I live at--Rat Lake, in the Carcross Valley--I would say Rampart House, on the Porcupine River. It has an amazing feeling, and the plant life is incredibly abundant. I have never seen juniper berries that drip off the branches as they do there.”
What’s the best up-close-and-personal encounter you’ve had with the local wildlife?
“We had two boreal wood ducks trying to nest in our wood stove. I made them a bed of fresh chickweed and put a bowl of fresh water in it for them so I could make sure that they were not injured from their long, dirty journey down the stovepipe. They made themselves right at home. When the phone rang that day I kept answering it, ‘Ducks Unlimited!’ When I knew they were okay, we released them.”
You’re on the phone to a friend from the Outside. No one from the government is listening. Do you say “Yukon” or “The Yukon”?
“I use both.”
When the cold and dark gets to you, where do you go to recharge?
“I really like my hot tub, out on my deck. We have front-row seats for the sun and moonrise and the best view of the Gray Ridge Mountains.”
Dog mushing or snowmobiling?
“I like mushing and mushers, but I don’t get out to do it very often. Mushers work really hard caring for their dogs--they are so dedicated. But honestly, I like anything that gets you out in the bush.”
How cold is too cold?
“We can’t do anything about the weather. On the very coldest, darkest days, I always make sure I get outside. But the main activity is just trying to make sure the pipes don’t freeze and keep the wood stove burning hot.”
What author, musician, band, or artist from the territory do you think should be more famous?
[Singer-songwriter] Nicole Edwards. She has the most amazing voice. Her voice, songs, amazing spirit, and
her ability to connect with her audience inspire me. I think the whole world would benefit from listening and dancing to her tunes.”
You’ve just won a huge jackpot at Diamond Tooth Gerties Casino, and you have 24 hours to spend it in the Yukon. Where are you headed?
“Aroma Borealis! The last time I visited Gerties I bought 25 dollars worth of chips and played all night, lost and won, and left with 25 bucks in my pocket.”
Finally, what does “The Spell of the Yukon” mean to you personally?
“It is not the material wealth that is important in life. A life well lived is one where we live our passion, connect deeply with those we love, and contribute in the best way we know how to make the world a better place.”
My favorite part of the poem:
It’s the great, big, broad land 'way up yonder,
It’s the forests where silence has lease;
It’s the beauty that thrills me with wonder,
It’s the stillness that fills me with peace.Y