Tuesday, July 29, 2014

the ups and downs of starting a non-profit

 a few last pictures from Lost Lake hike...Maddie had made us all bracelets...thanks Maddie.  this was our official shot!!
 tried the IRS again and again the wait times were over 1 hour!!  honestly, my brain hasn't been very good at hold noise since i whacked it.  just a leftover thing i've noticed.  or perhaps it's just that as we age we have less tolerance for such things.
 then i was trying to see if i could get the money stuff sorted out so that we could fill our bank account with more than the$30 we currently have.  in talking to web.com i came to discover that i am paying out a larger sum of money to them than what i had known....small print.  the guy at least got me a better deal, but still it's just more money coming out of my personal account.
 it was raining outside anyway...so depression settled in.  the usual...what the hell am i thinking getting myself involved in this.  they want me to take over the care and management of this place, i'm running through my own money, no idea if i can get donations of any amount even if the IRS authorizes our non-profit...!!
 anytime you start something new in life, make major changes it's a challenge.  one minute you are excited, the next you are anxious or scared.
 it does help getting positive feedback from various sources. a kind note here, a new contact there, a word...if you have said or commented any such things to me...thank you...you have no idea how much it helps.  i wish i had a more clear and concise plan of action.  i wish i knew more exactly what we may or may not be able to accomplish with this.
 but it's just me doing the best i can in uncharted territory.  i do feel like i am wearing that 50# pack at times.  of course, this afternoon i go to check my mail and there is a note from the IRS!!  i have never been happy to get a letter from the IRS, but today the IRS made me happy.  how often can one say that??!!  it's a note from them stating we are in process.  if all goes well, we are looking at 90 days!!  if not...well, lets just not go there.  it does give me something that i can copy and send to the web money folks and the kickstarter money people.
 another good thing was that i called the Bristol Bay Native Association.  i have wanted to do this as i have written notes to them in general but hadn't yet gotten in touch with them by phone.  i was surprised when they put me right through to the woman who is the director i believe.  she said they will have a meeting after their subsistence fishing days are over and asked for me to send her an email with our information.  so i did, hopefully, i will hear from her again.
 my friend came and picked up the quilts and those are now shipped off.  great to have that completed.
 these are in Seward.
 it was a rainy day today.  just a light sprinkle when i finally set off for a walk with both dogs today.  ended up at Campbell Airstrip.  we looped it backwards so ended with the airstrip.  when we hit the airstrip the rain just started falling hard.  no protection out there on the runway and this is a long runway...it's considered an emergency runway in case the main Anchorage runway is destroyed in a big quake or something.  i had my raincoat on and so did rio. i also had a rain cover from my pack so we were fine...but we got drenched all the same.
 there were some people behind us on the airstrip and with rio walking so slow they were catching up fast.  they did finally catch up and they didn't have any rain gear on...i made some comment about the light rain which got little response.  then i looked back at my drenched dogs and said, "i've been hearing talk of them unionizing" the guy gave me a bizarre look and said, "the raindrops?", the girlfriend then gave him a sour look and said, "the dogs"...i thought my joke was super funny, but you do have to know your audience and apparently my audience was sour and my joke fell flat.  i laughed anyway...
 came home and for the second time this week built a fire in the fireplace...which seems redundant to say since where else would i be building the fire. oh well.
 i'm actually fine walking in the rain.  it did wonders getting me out of my WARIS funk.
 i grew up in Southern California and on the corners people would try to sell you bags of oranges or flowers...up here in Anchorage you will sometimes see this scene.  those are Walrus tusks/skulls and another guy had whale baleen he was selling.  mostly you see the baleen, but occasionally the Walrus show up.  from what i can tell they are legal harvests.  not sure how that works in the native culture.  who is selling these, who gets the money for it.  no way for me to know legal or not legal except one would think if they were illegal catches they wouldn't be so brazen in selling them on the street.
 for a walrus lover it's not the easiest thing to see on the street, not knowing the circumstances.  Round Island does have a legal native hunt at the end of the season...i think sept/oct and they take 8-10 animals for local use.  they eat them and utilize the animals...
 these are just flowers from a walk in Kincaid.

 our governor has a new fish advisor...an odd selection it seems.  the guy used to work in public relations for the pebble mine...which has been a controversial battle fish against pebble mine...the fear in Bristol Bay is that this particular mine project could destroy a stellar fishing area...not unfounded concern by the way.  so to select someone who worked for the fishing industry's "enemy" seems an odd choice.
 really wish we could get politicians out of our land/sea and animals...they are here to stay sadly.
 part of the reason my day started slowly today was Rio.  she refused to eat breakfast.  this is not a dog who missed meals.  her gut was grumbling and could be heard from across the room. not a dog i want in a car with me.  anyway, by 3pm she had regained her appetite and her gut had settled down.  she's been fine since.
 the end of her tail still looks a bit raw...not sure that poor tail will ever be the same.
 the world outside is going nuts....spoke to my friend Carla tonight. i told her i may have to just move to Round Island and wait out WWIII.  the winters would be hell out there though i fear.  living remote may be the best defense though.
 a few of Blossom.  she is such a happy dog. when i was stressed today i thought i would just sit with Blossom and brush her coat out.  relaxing for me...less so for her. she doesn't seem to appreciate it...she's such a baby.  she was sure happy when her friend Sandra showed up to visit her. (never mind that this was not the actual purpose of the visit, in Blossom's mind that was the only reason for the visit).
 lots of cool pictures in the ADN the other day of natives at fish camps.  they cut up their fish and dry them on racks and then take them to smoke houses.  it does look cool all those fish on the racks.  of course, i've always wondered how they keep the bears away from all that fish.  it's worked for generations though.
 diet is what you get used to.  not sure i could handle seal oil/blubber and stink heads...they often bury fish heads in a pit to ferment and then eat those.  i'm sure i would hurl.  the diet of crap from the city have not been good for the native population though.  increased diabetes and rotten teeth from all the soda and sugar.
 don't think i've put any of these from byron glacier in yet.  i'll have to look back. hopefully i'm not doubling up.
 Blossom's selfie below, mine above.
 these aren't glaciers, they are just snow leftover.  for some reason the snow here seems to last all year.  they must get a lot here in the winter.  seems like i've noticed that the few times i've driven out that way early spring...portage valley just get dumped on a lot.
 a selfie with Blossom, she looks thrilled.  :-)
 it is a fun place to go and play in the snow.  Blossom was actually super happy to play on the snow.  i've come here for years and i recall the glacier in the background being much closer in...it seems like you could walk up to the face when i first came north.

 i think i'm still wet from todays downpour. it didn't matter though, those mosquito's were still biting me.
 i, of course, sprayed myself but i think the rain washed it off...i don't really believe any bug sprays actually work against these bad ass mosquito's!!
 pretty plants by the snow

 these are just the pretty clouds from the other night.  loved the wild colours.

 and a few from the dunes yesterday.  don't think these ones got in there, just the bigger camera shots.

 liked that blossoms ball is mid air
 today was a contrast from yesterdays sunshine.

 to every day a little rain must fall.  kept me safe from mowing the lawn.

 pretty greens and reds below
 lots more mushrooms out there today again.  Miss Breezy Chatterbug has been seen snuggling up with Rio Catalina again.  she does this until Rio steps on her badly...then she will move away for a bit.  dang cat keeps dashing out the back door and into the yard.  she doesn't stay out long and seems pretty anxious the entire time she is out there.  some cats just get that way and won't stay in.  Pogi seems content to live the easy life of a house cat.
time for me to crash for the night.  it was a bit of a stressful day.  better get it together.  my friend Carla is right, most non-profits didn't begin all organized as they appear when we see them, they start as grass roots organizations with people who are passionate and trying to find their way through these early stages in order to reach their goals.  it can be frustrating though.
grateful for 1...rain..some times it's just nice to be out in a good rain like that and feel it running down your face.  2...animals and their unconditional companionship 3...mushrooms..i don't like to eat them, but i love to photograph them.

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