Our camera is still suffering from an allergic reaction to a fall it took during the Golovin PeeWee basketball tournament and so I can't offer any cool pictures this time around. However, if you would like to see some photo coverage of the BSSD Native Youth Olympics that took place here this weekend, I would highly recommend checking out www.bssd.org. They will have a link that will direct you to a collection of photos and statistics. Had I thought ahead, I would have directed you to the link prior to this weekend so that you could have seen the live streamed coverage that the techies offer through the Bering Straits.
The games go back quite a ways with their cultural beginnings being the winter lodges of various villages. Myra will have to make a more in depth post concerning the proper words and what not. I think my family around here asks me to say and spell Eskimo words just so they can have a chance to laugh at me. My understanding though is that peoples would get together for various reasons throughout the winter when the trails would get good enough to travel on. The villages would watch and cheer on their athletes and enjoy the reprieve from the long cold winter months through the warm fellowship with family and friends.
This is not meant to be a masters thesis on the Eskimo culture of the Norton Sound and so I will try to make my thoughts more concise. I was absolutely amazed tonight by the athleticism that I witnessed. There were kids out there that could jump off of one foot, kick a ball the size of a small peanut butter jar that was suspended 96" (keep in mind that I am only 76" and considered a giant in my village), and then land on the same foot without falling down. Franklin Adams from Koyuk won it tonight with 98" and he also won the two foot high kick... the kid only stands up to around my shoulder. Believe it... or not.
Like the traditional get togethers of years past, this event was also a great chance to see old friends again. I had so much fun just sitting and watching Myra interact with Auntie Willa. They told silly stories and laughed the entire time. I got a strange glimpse at what Myra and Terra will be like in about fifteen years when they are taking over and running NYO. They will have to work at opposite ends of the court if they ever plan on getting anything done without giggling through the whole thing.
I have to admit that NYO is one of my new favorite sports. It was a great chance to get together, encourage each other, smile, and laugh while enjoying our culture. Again, Myra is humble enough not to mention it, but I have to admit that I was over come with prde when they announced Myra as being a Bering Straits School District record holder in the scissor broad jump. Her record has stood for 13 years.