Life in a canvas tent has been pretty nice for the first three weeks at Dechinta University. I start the day waking up in my sleeping bag. It’s a bit chilly when I wake up, but someone has to get up to start the fire, sometimes its me and sometimes its the other students in the tent that do it.
First you put in the the bearded stuff that you find on dry spruce trees, its nice and dry so the fire ignites right away. After that I add some kindling’s to make the fire a bit bigger, then I add in the split wood and I usually crack the stove door open for air to flow.
While the fire is going, I get my toothbrush and go outside to brush my teeth, it feels good to have fresh breath in the morning. I go back in the canvas tent to get the things I need for the day. At Dechinta, its a mix of school supplies and bush supplies. For school, its books that the instructors assign us, a notebook and some pens. For the bush, I get my winter gear (snow jacket, pants, boots, gloves, toque, neck warmer), a knife and my thermos bottle. I also take my camera to take photos. Terry, our camp cook usually yells out that breakfast is done. I get my stuff, load up the stove and head out the tent for breakfast.
In the mornings at Dechinta, we have classes. The classes include, presentations from instructors, classroom discussions and sowing. In the afternoons we do land based activities like setting & checking fish nets, setting & checking beaver traps, chopping wood for our stoves, and getting water for camp. Before we head back to out canvas tents the group has a governance circle, we talk about our day and what is coming up for the next.
In the evenings we make sure there is wood for the night and kindling’s for the morning. After a nice long day of being out on the land, I lay on top of my sleeping bag and do my homework. Once the homework is done, I climb into my sleeping bag and sleep. Ahhhh, you gotta love life in a canvas tent.