I’m about halfway done getting the child out of the parka. Fannie Akpik came out to look at the stitches. She agreed with Qaiyaan and me that the stitching on the parka looked like waterproof seams, even though it is clearly caribou, which isn’t normally waterproof. I took some samples to test for presence of marine mammal oil, which might have helped make it water-resistant anyway.
I’m trying to video the whole “excavation” process, both to document it and to serve as a backup to notes & bag labels. I’ve reversed the photostand I have, and put it on a lab bench with the camera mount at the tippy top, overhanging the person on the sheet of plywood. I can just get the camera high enough to get the whole thing in the shot. I use a stepladder to get up and down to work on it. The only problem is that there is no low battery warning, so it just dies, which it did a couple of times yesterday. Today we started setting alarms on our phones to check the camera, so that more or less solved that problem. I haven’t been able to download the card yet. The SD card readers at work are getting touchy, and my Mac at home said it couldn’t read the card. The camera sees files, so maybe I need to hook it up directly.
While looking at the wolf, we noticed that some of the pieces were cut with a rounded edge, and Fannie, who is Nuvukmuit (that’s the preferred spelling in their dialect, not Nuvugmiut) herself, thought it could be related to the rounded tail on the atikłuks they make for their dance group today. Later I found another seam where wolf had been sewn to caribou.
It’s amazing how nice the stitching is, especially since they were done with a bone needle.