Looking Closer to Rankin Inlet Nickel Mine (1957-1963)
by Jordan Konek
August 15, 2011
For this past week I was in Rankin Inlet to look a little closer on Rankin Inlet Nickel Mine with the Memorial University of Newfoundland’s Dr. Arn Keeling who is a geography researcher, a student Patricia Boulter and a resident film maker Pallulaaq Freisen. I enjoyed the time here in Rankin with the crew and was happy to meet all the people here that I met in Rankin Inlet, I will say that Rankin has a lot of dogs and I think that’s cool, it feels to me that I should have a dog at home in Arviat. But to get back to the research project, I learned some interesting things.
It was nice to learn that we Inuit are very adaptable like Peter Irniq said “we Inuit are very adaptable, we did not know a single word of English and now look at us”. Peter Irniq and Inuit Elders impress me a lot because they say these simple little things that we can think about and use them everyday. It’s part of their normal life, because working twenty four hours a day seven days a week was their way of survival.
I am building a shack at home and my grandmother wanted to see where I’m going to put the shack. She came and said “you should move it on the other side because during winter, the snow will be covering your steps”. Inuit think ahead and prepare for the worst to come in their traditional way and they are some impressive things.
I am now more into this Nanisiniq project more than I was in the beginning. In the beginning I joined because I wanted to travel, now it’s all about getting to know a little bit more of Inuit history, and a little more and more.
I would like to thank Dr. Arn Keeling or “Arn” (like Inuit would say it, there’s no Dr.Mr.Mrs in Inuit language) who was nice enough to get me here to film for Nanisiniq and to interview Elders who have a lot of Inuit history. Also, like to thank Trish (Patricia) who helped prepare the workshop here in Rankin and also did some interviews. Pallulaaq who is a very nice person, very welcoming and hard working person who did so much for us during the week here in Rankin Inlet. Last but almost least the two entertainment guys here at the lodge Anthony and Luke who were also nice, but they are mechanics here in Rankin for a mining project going on in Rankin. And also Phillipe from the CBC who interview me and Amy Owingayak in Arviat for the project.