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Tlingit Conversation #25
Speakers are Daasdiyaa Nelly Lord and Achkwéi Lena Farkas. Recorded July 19, 2010, at the home of Lena Farkas in Yakutat, Alaska, by Naakil.aan Mark Hans Chester. THIS RECORDING IS CONTINUED FROM # 24. IT IS CONTINUED ON # 26.
This material is based on work supported by National Science Foundation grant 0853788 to the University of Alaska Southeast with Ljáaḵkʼ Alice Taff as Principal Investigator, and by National Endowment for the Humanities fellowship 266286-19 to Ljáaḵkʼ Alice Taff. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation or National Endowment for the Humanities.
Tlingit transcription by X̱ʼaagi Sháawu Keri Eggleston. English translation by Kaaḵal.aat Florence Sheakley with Alice Taff and by Daasdiyaa Anita Lafferty and Ḵaachkoo.aaḵw Helen Sarabia with X̱ʼaagi Sháawu Keri Eggleston. Edited by Naakil.aan Mark Hans Chester, X̱ʼaagi Sháawu Keri Eggleston, and Ḵaachkoo.aaḵw Helen Sarabia. Also edited by Shag̱aaw Éesh Devlin Anderstrom.
SYMBOLS: Brackets = {false start}. [translator/transcriber's note]. (added for clarity). ??? = canʼt understand. «quotation marks for Tlingit text». [Time-aligned text for this video was accomplished using ELAN ((Versions 6.0 (2020), 6.1 (2021), and 6.3 (2022) [Computer software]. Nijmegen: Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics, The Language Archive. Retrieved from]
Yaa kanajúx.
It (camera) is running.
Tlél x̱áa shákdé tsoo aadé
Thereʼs probably not even any way
ḵúx̱de yóo haa nux̱dineiyi yé yáa ḵustí.
that we can revert to that way of life.
{dei} Dei áyáa haa éex̱ woodaa yáa dleit ḵáa yáx̱ ḵustí.
We have already gotten used to living like the white people.
Chʼa yáa yéi kwdzigeyi aa atyátx'i ée wdultóowu ḵu.aa shákdé yéi kg̱watée wáaneex's.
Probably only if it is taught to the small children might it possibly be that way.
Tlél ḵwás uháan de.
Itʼs not us, now.
De ḵútx̱ áyáa haa wdishán yá dleit ḵáa x̱ooxʼ yéi haa teeyí.
We're too old now being among the white people.
[At.shooḵ] Ah shucks. Speak for yourself.
Ách áwé tle x̱at x̱ʼakana(júxch).
Thatʼs why my mouth is always (running).
X̱at x̱ʼanawóosʼch,
She always asks me,
«Wa.é a daa yoo x̱'atán!»
“You talk about it yourself!”
Ahh shucks.
Yeah. It was a lot of fun. You know the, I remember sometimes I used to take, when she used to have to go to Situk with my dad and my brothers cause she had tuberculosis and they didnʼt want me to catch it, Iʼd stay in town with my mother. But, like I remember one time her and, her and Mrs. B. A. Jack and Mary Collier, I took them in a canoe over to Khantaak island to fish, to pick strawberries. Oh, I wouldnʼt tell them but I was scared to look in the water. Those tall grass in the water, I always imagined a monster would come up. Iʼd never tell them. Iʼd just row and get over as soon as I can. Haaaaw. But, like we used to go over there, a, by, on this side of Point Carrew and, and uh, to pick, a, a, black seaweed,
black seaweed.
There'd be lots over there. There were lots over there this, uh, this spring time. A lot of people got a lot of, uh,
black seaweed
But I remember mom, our dad used to just throw a, part of a, um, tent on, on the alders there and build a fire in there and we just used to sleep. He'd make a bed for us and we'd sleep there and uh, out in the open, you know, except for that uh. We'd spend a day or two there, my, we'd really pick seaweed. And then my mom would get uh, uh, she'd take either a sheet a bed sheet or, or a tablecloth and, and dry that seaweed cause it would be nice and sunshining and, and so that would, we'd have to keep turning it.
Yóo áa yax̱ kiyjeil dé!
You (girls) turn it all over now!
And turn it and turn it. And we, she'd have it all dried the second day we come back. And I remember the men used to go up, up the bay. Harvey and , and grandpa Samson. And, and they would come down and right below on this side of the ANB hall they'd have halibut and king salmon there and, and the seal and theyʼd just say, "Help yourself." This was in the spring time because they knew everybody practically all used all their winter food by then. So they'd go up and bring down all kinds of food to eat.
What, what's that old saying, um,
ooskáayi ḵáa áwé, am,
a lazy person, um,
gug̱aléixw? Or something like that?
will (starve)?
He's going to starve.
Gug̱aláaxw táakw kaanáx̱.
He'll go hungry during the winter.
{oo oodzi} Oodzikaayi ḵáa áwé táakw kaanáx̱ uláaxwch.
A lazy man would starve over the winter.
Yéi x̱áawé, gunalchéesh.
That's it, thank you.
[At.shook]. I was mixed up.
Yeah, that's so true.
I was thinking a lot about that yesterday and the day before.
Me too I was putting away berries fast. Freezing.
No kidding.
Wé tsaa wudu.óoni,
When they shoot a seal,
áwé ax̱oo.aach ch'a yéi yaa s naḵúx̱u áwé yaa kdux̱áchch x̱aat tíxʼ.
some folks would tow a spruce root line as they were just going along in their canoe.
Tíx' a daa yéi ndu.eich
Theyʼd put a line around it
wé {a shee} shí aax̱ aa nax̱du.óos't.
so that some of the blood would get washed off.
{yan} Yánt has wuḵoox̱óo áwé,
When pulled up to the shore,
a daa yéi s jinéi nuch {wé}
they would work on
wé tsaa.
the seal.
Sheedihéin x̱á. Aatlein {du} a,
There are many of them. A lot of them, uh,
jinkaat ḵa keijín shákdé,
15 maybe,
aadé has yandux̱éich {wé s} wé a,
they would take them there by boat uh,
tsaa, tsaa lʼóon.
seal hunting.
Aag̱áa áwé
At that time
ax̱ tláa tle tlákw shákdé áyóo busy, x̱á.
my mother was always busy, you know.
Hél du tuwáa ushgú ch'a tliyéit tooḵeení.
She didnʼt want us to just sit still.
Áwé, háʼ,
So, my,
áa haa shukoojeis' nuch aadé'gi yé wé Fels Naphtha soap áwé.
she would show us how to wash it with Fels Naphtha soap.
Aan'gi nuch.
We would wash it with it.
A ítdáx̱ áwé wé, wé, wé am,
After that the, the, the um,
yaa naxúgu áwé wéi, wé,
as itʼs drying the,
wé ah,
that, uh,
taay, x̱á,
the fat, you know,
{a daadé yaa kla}
{wáa} sometimes hél ldakát á k'idéin yóo duts'étʼtch.
sometimes they don't carefully get all of the fat off of it.
Áwé wé wéiksh a een áwé tsu x̱á aax̱ duxáasʼ nuch wé
So they would scrape it off again with a wéiksh (Tlingit ulu-like knife)
a káa yéi yateeyi aa,
parts with it on there,
a, wé
uh, the
Taay. Taay. Taay.
Fat. Fat. Fat.
{aw}Aag̱áa áwé tsáa wé, wé,
And then
tsu wé du.ús'gi nuch.
they would wash it again.
Ḵaa túg̱aa teeyí áwés tsu ch'u yéi héen een x̱á.
When they were satasfied with it, then they would do the same again with water, you see.
{yéi da tsu} A ítdáx̱ áwé wé yáa,
Then after that,
Um, {kei}, how do they call in in Tlingit?
T'éesh gé?
Tanning frame?
T'éesh. Aaá.
Tanning frame. Yes.
Á áwé yáa tsaa áwéi,
The seal,
yáa a doogú x̱áayóo
itʼs hide
{yaa k} yaa kduxáshch.
is cut.
Aag̱áa áwé wé t'éesh kaadé áwé kdusxatji nuch x̱á.
Then it's stretched onto the frame, see.
Aag̱áa áwé g̱agaanx',
Then, in the sun,
gáanx' áwé g̱agaanch áwé yaa ksaxúkch x̱á.
outside, the sun dries it.
K'e aadé yéi jidunéi nuch yé wé aadé ḵunalgás'ch yóo
Consider how they would work, they would move over yonder to
tsaa áa yéi daadune yéide.
the place where they put up seal.
Aatx̱ áwéi tsoo yáax' haat yoodux̱áaych.
From there, they would bring them back here by boat.
Aag̱áa áwéi tsu wé a doogóo tsoo {nadu.u} du.úsʼ ḵa wé,
At that time, they would wash the hides again and the,
wé tʼéesht, haat,
to the tanning frames, there,
t'éesht has oodóoxʼch x̱á.
they tie it to the tanning frame, you know.
Aag̱áa áwé yaa s aksaxúkch.
Then they would start to dry them.
A ítdáx̱ áwé tsoo duchuk nuch.
After that it would be kneaded (to soften it).
Wuduchoogóodáx̱ áwé tsoo wé
After it was kneaded, the
wé téel yáx̱,
like shoes,
wé ḵáax'ch x̱á téel yáx̱ áwé,
the men would (shape) like shoes,
ch'a wéi, wáaneex's yóo
yóo, ah,
that, uh,
keishísh, wáanix's yáa
alder, maybe
What do you call the roots?
Oh! Keishísh x̱aadí.
Alder roots.
Wé a x̱aadí wáang̱aneins yéi dax̱ kundageich x̱á.
The roots are sometimes this big.
Ḵaachʼoo yáa nalháashadi.
Or the driftwood.
tlei wé ḵaa téeli yáx {has x̱áa has has oo}
like shoes
Wé ḵáa?
The men?
Yeah. They, they shaped the, the wood like, like a person's feet so that they get the sizes, you know, to
fit a person. At xáshdi téel yís ák.wé?
For moccasins, right?
Ḵaa téeli yáx̱.
Like a personʼs shoes.
X'oon, x'oon,
How much, how much,
Hóoch' áwé ax̱ Lingít yóox̱'atángi!
My Tlingit language is gone!
Á áyáa ḵaa téeli aadé koogeyi yé yáx̱ áwé yaa kduxáshch x̱áa yáa tsaa.
They cut the seal (hide) the same size as people's shoes.
Wáa sá yax̱ kuliyáat' ḵaa x̱'oos.
How big the person's foot is.
Yeah, {wáa sá yax̱ kul} wáa sá kudliyáat' yá ḵaa x̱ʼoos.
Yeah, the size of a personʼs feet.
Ayáx̱ áwé kéi duxaashch.
Theyʼd cut it like that.
Aag̱áa áwé tsá wóoshde yaa kduḵéich.
Then theyʼd start sewing them together.
Tlei ch'oo shaatk'átsk'oos,
As just a little girl yet,
tle ch'a shux'áanáx̱, ch'as Lingít sʼé yóot x̱'ax̱wditán, x̱á.
from the beginning, I started speaking only in Tlingit, you know.
Keijín táakwx̱ x̱at sateeyí áhé du een x̱waa.aat school-de.
When I was five years old, I went with her to school.
Tle chʼoo aax̱,
From then on,
tle chʼa yáa tléix', déex̱, nás'k,
only 1, 2, 3,
tle chʼa twenty-dé shákdéiwé sʼé x̱washigóok x̱á, count up to twenty.
I only knew how to (count) to twenty at first, you know, count up to twenty.
A ítdáx̱ áwé tléix' hándit.
After that 100.
Ha {wéi, wé dleit} wé soldiers x̱á
The soldiers see,
ḵa yóo navy town-dé has joodunaaḵch.
and the navy were allowed to go to town.
Á áwé ax̱ tláa
My mother
á, tlél tsú gáanxʼ x̱at wul.oos.
ah, she wouldnʼt even let me play outside.
Chʼu tle áwéis has x̱ʼakx̱anik nuch daaḵw size-ix̱ sá sateeyí
I would just translate for them which size (of shoe) they were
ḵa wáa sá x̱ʼalatseení.
and how much it would cost.
Áwé tsoo hasdu tuwáa sigóo tsoo
So they want her to
tsoo yéi s tsoo aa wuḵaayée,
sew another (pair),
{a} a kaayí áwéis du een kanx̱aníkch.
I'd tell her the size.
Aaá. Ax̱ éesh ḵu.aa áwéis wé t'éesh áwé axáas' nuch x̱á.
Yeah. My father though was always scraping the hide on the frame.
Ax̱ tláa{ch} tle ḵúnáx̱ tle aatlein áwé tlákw du éetx̱ du.óow.
They'd buy from my mother all the time.
Tle wé {ḵaa ḵa i}
tle ch'u yeedátde ḵaa x̱'akx̱anik nuch wé,
right up to now I translate for people the,
wé hostpital-x' tsú wé
At the hospital too, this
tléináx̱ shawat.shaan.
one old woman.
Gee, she must have been like 80 or 90 years old. That Presbyterian church in Sitka, this man, he came to me and he said, "You know, could you interpret the Bible for me for this lady?" Oh my god.
Tle ch'a yéi áwé sh káa x̱'ax̱wdigáx',
So I prayed for myself like this,
"Let me say the right words!" Oh man that was tough! [At shooḵ]
Too much!
Uh, and there was times I thought I wished I could just never talk {enlgi} Tlingit. I went through that spell too.
Tlél k'idéin een, am, frame kaadé ee ustí gwál du x̱ánde kanashéetʼ i káayag̱ijeidí. Aaá.
You aren't in um, the frame, maybe push your chair next to her. Yeah.
Gunalchéesh tlein. Du, du
Thank you so much. Her, her
g̱ushkáa yéi kḵwanóok.
I'm going to sit on her lap.
I'm going to spank her.
I gu.aa yáx̱ x'wán!
Good luck!
[At.shooḵ] Oh shucks.
{xʼoo} X'oon gaaw sáyá?
What time is it?
Déix̱ gaaw gé?
Is it two o'clock?
Yeah, déex̱ gaawdáx̱ daak kawdixít. Déix̱ gaawdáx̱.
Yeah, it's after two o'clock. After two oʼclock.
Aa, let me see, daaḵw.aa sáyáa tsú kakḵwalaneek?
Ah, let me see, what else should I tell?
Tlél, tlél tsú chʼa ldakát yáaxʼ yéi ḵootéeyin, x̱á.
Not everybody lived right here, you know.
Yóo naakée Copper River-dáx̱ áyáa haat haa wsidáḵ.
He (we?) migrated here from the Copper River, way up north,
yáa ax̱, ax̱ tláa, ax̱ léelk'u hás.
my, my mother, my grandparents.
Á áwé
aa, yóo ixkéedáx̱ tsús x̱á Teiḵweidée ḵa L'uknax̱.ádee.
ah, from the south as well, you know, the Teiḵweidí and Lʼuknax̱.ádi.
Wé a,
The uh,
Dry Bay-xʼ kéi has wuligásʼ.
they moved up to Dry Bay.
Ḵunaag̱a.áa ágé?
Dry Bay?
Huh? Ḵunaag̱a.áa.
Dry Bay.
Ḵunag̱a.áa shákdé?
Maybe (it is called) Dry Bay?
Dry Bay.
Dry Bay.
yéi x̱aawé.
that's it.
Dry Bay.
Dax̱.aa a saayí ḵu.aa,
The second name though,
yáa Ḵeixwnéich awsikóo.
Nora Dauenhauer knows it.
Ḵunaaga.áa shákdé.
Maybe (it is called) Dry Bay?
G̱unaax̱oo ḵu.aa.
It is Dry Bay [Among the Athabascans] though.
Yéi x̱áawé. I know {yáa},
It is (also) that.
yáa naakéedáx̱ yaa ana.ádi áwéi
when the people were coming from the north,
Lig̱aasi Áa a káx̱ ḵuwduwashee {yáa}
they found Taboo Lake [Lig̱aasi Áa no longer exists; it was a glacial lake where Icy Bay is now.]
a, yáa
uh, the
Maalsapinat a.áat shákdéiwé
maybe when they arrived at Malaspina (Glacier)
á áwé wé áa has awsiteen yá k'isáani; aadé s kawduwaḵaa yáa ixkéede x̱á.
those young boys saw a lake there; they had been sent there to the south, you see.
Áwé wéi Lig̱aasi Áa yóo duwasáakw. Taboo Lake.
So that was called Taboo Lake.
Á áwéi ch'as akaawa.aaḵw áwé x̱á
So they just tried
a, aan yóo has x̱'ala.átgi ḵa chʼa yéi tlél wáa sá utí x̱áa.
to talk with them and everything was all right, you know.
{hél á hél} «Hél yee een ḵugax̱tulagaawút áyáa haat wutoo.aat,» you know. Ch'a yéi áwé yóo s x̱'ali.átk.
“We didn't come here to fight with you,” you know. This is how they spoke.
Á áwé has awshigóok wé
They know how
{wé xáa}
wé xáak [xáatl] tóox' alʼóon.
to hunt in the ice floes.
In the ice.
Á áwé has awshigóok aadé yéi daadune (yé).
So they figured out how to do that.
That's what the Kwaan has on their wall.
[Referring to Yak-Tat Kwaan, Inc., the local native corporation in Yakutat.]
Yáa Dry Bay-xʼ {kéi has wus} kéi (s wud} has wu.aadée áwé wéi Teiḵweidée,
When the Teiḵweidí went up (the coast) to Dry Bay,
Aan Tlein has awsiteen. Tsu yéi kʼisáanee áwé kawduwaḵaa.
they saw the Ahrnklin River area. The same way, young boys were sent out.
Á áwé {aatlein}
aatlein ldakát yéide át áwé áa has awsiteen, tsoo,
they saw many of all different kinds of animals, even,
tsu wéi ah, x̱áat {ḵa} ḵa wéi
even uh, salmon and
ah, ah, ah, mountain goat ḵa
uh, uh, uh mountain goat and
Jánwu. Haa? Jánwu gé?
Mountain goat. Huh? Mountain goat?
Jánwu mountain
Mountain goat.
goat. Uh yeah.
Jénwoo ḵaa
Mountain goat and
ldakát yéide dux̱a atx̱á x̱á.
all kinds of edible foods, you know.
Ḵa, ḵa yáa
And the,
at doogoo {dusxuk aa} duhun aa.
hides {that the dry} that they sell.
Á áwé ḵux̱ has da.áat áwéi yéi has x̱'ayaḵá, «Át aaní tlein áyóo wtuwat'ei.»
So when they returned, they said, “We have found a big land of the animals.”
Á áwéi
tél ḵu.a áwéi aadóoch sá
{wus} wusikóo k'idéin aadóo{ch sá wu ha} éedáx̱ sá has awu.oowú.
knows really who they bought it from.
Aa, de yáaxʼ yéi ḵuteeyée áwé.
Uh, so that was while there were already people living here.
Áwéi ch'as wéi Yanyeidée shákdéiwé. Ax̱ tláach tsú yéi x̱at yawsiḵaa.
So it was probably only the Yanyeidí. My mother told me that too.
Hásch shákdéiwé x̱áa has aawahoon yáa Teiḵweidée éexʼ.
It was probably them; they sold it to the Teiḵweidí.
De yaa s nalgás' hás ḵwá yóo naakéedei.
They were migrating northward.
Ah, Canada wáa sás duwasáakw wé,
Uh, Canada, what do they call the,
Ah, Kinjichwaan aanée shákdé?
Uh, Canada [King George land] perhaps?
Could be, it's one of the,
Tlél x̱wasakú.
I don't know.
It's one of the Canadians that come down to Celebration.
[Eagle clan name]
Could be, and, Ḵachʼu ah,
Or uh,
Could be. But theyʼre Carcross-dáx̱ áwé {haat has} ax̱oo.aa haat has ḵooteench. Oh, Daḵl'aweidí x̱áawé.
Some of them would travel here from Carcross. Oh, that's Daḵl'aweidí.
Uhuh. Gwál yé.
Maybe so.
Á áwéi
This is
ah, yáa Teiḵweidéech áwé hasdu éetx̱ woo.oo yá Aan Tlein.
uh, the Teiḵweidí bought The Big Land [Ahrnklin River Area] from them.
Át Aaní Tlein.
The Big Land of the Animals.
Yóo áwé x̱aan akanéek ax̱ tláach.
That's what my mother tells/told me.
Yisikóo gé, am,
Do you know, um
B. B. Williams, aadóo sá?
who B. B. Williams was?
Yee x̱ooní gé?
Is that your relative?
Ax̱ éesh du kéilk' áwé.
That's my father's nephew.
Oh, at.shí awliyéx̱.
He composed a song.
L'uknax̱.ádi yátx'i jeeyís.
For the Children of the L'uknax̱.ádi.
Yisikóo gé yú at shí?
Do you know the song?
Huh? Do you know the song? Oh.
Something happened to me somewhere along the way when I was growing up a child. I saw all these people singing Tlingit songs and they were drinking and I just never wanted to learn it. It just, stuck in my mind. I thought to myself, the only time they want to sing those songs is when they're drinking. That's the attitude I had. And so it's been hard for me to, you know, to accept it that it could be fun in a nice way, you know. So I just never learned the songs. I can, I can uh, if I hear Nellie singing I can follow her, but I never meant to remember them either, you know. And this is the first time I ever said it. Uh, that was why I never wanted to dance and my uncle, my brother Paul wanted Nellie and I to dance with, with uh, the St. Elias dancers when we moved back here and I just forced myself, you know. It, it, uh, it's just because I was around so many drunk people and they were singing in Tlingit and I just, it just hit me the wrong way, you know. But B.B. Williams is uh, Billy Williams, the one uh, one that's alive here now? That was his grandfather, B.B. Williams. Uh, like I say, heʼs my, he was our dad's uh, nephew.
Goot'á hít sá yuháan?
Which house are you all from?
Huh? Goot'á hít sáyá yuháan?
Which house are you all from?
Dís Hít.
Moon house.
Marge, Marge Adams ḵu.aa x̱á,
But Marge Adams, see
she wants to take back that song her dad did.
Does she?
He composed, and he, he composed it for the Teiḵweidí, I mean for his clan you know. You can't take it back. She's, she's uh, she, sheʼs uh, (from)G̱anawás [Knight Island]. They're the same as us, they're from uh,
ah, K'inéix̱ Ḵwáan.
uh, Copper River people.
Daaḵw.aa hít (sá)?
Which house?
Goot'á hít (sá)? Owl house.
Which house?
Oh, oh.
And she says there's nobody else from the Owl House but her. And, and, and you can't take anything like that back. You compose a song, it's for the whole clan, itʼs
not just for you. Has du jiyís áwé. Yeah.
It is for them. Yeah.
Yeah. So that was for the Teiḵweidí. See, nobody really knew who, who D.S. Benson really was. He came up here from Sitka. And uh, he had some kids here. And Marge was one of his kids. But the Teiḵweidí felt sorry for him so they, they adopted him into the Teiḵwedí. And nobody remembers what, what clan he was down there, you know. But nobodyʼs just going to say, "Hey, Marge, you know..." uh, declare war.
Ḵúnáx̱ am,
It is really um,
{haa too} haa toowú yaa anajáḵ yáa náaw,
killing our spirit, that liquor,
ḵa yáa géewaa.
and beer.
Oh yeah.
Eesháan áyá.
It's too bad.
Tle a tóonáx̱ áwé tsú wé dusʼeḵ.aa
At the same time, that marijuana too
{ḵa wé ḵa wé} ḵa wéi kdulxakwx̱u aa.
and the ones that they crush up.
All that stuff. Oh.
Wáa sás iyasáa,
What did you call,
Haa tle wé duwaagú yáx̱ x̱áawé kdul[xákwx̱].
They mash it up just like tobacco.
just the, the one that you mash up and, from pill forms.
Eesháan áyá.
It's too bad.
Mm, yeah it's pretty, it, it, it's just really bad. And I read the newspaper every day. And those people up north are even worse than we are. Especially since all that um, glacier is melting the, the, their area. It's just everything melting up there. More of them moved to Anchorage this winter, last fall. They were just running from that. And they had nine suicides in one village on the Kuskokwim. Just in a couple months. So really um, itʼs really bad.
Ách áyá ax̱ tuwáa sigóo has, hasdu ée x̱, am,
That is why I want to (teach them).
Wáa sá yakḵwaḵáa?
What am I trying to say?
Has du éex̱ gug̱adáaḵ?
They will ???
haa ḵusteeyí.
our culture.
So they {come s} grow up with it, so they're,
accustomed to it.
Wáa sá yakḵwaḵáa?
What am I trying to say?
{haa haa} Haa yátx'i waḵshiyeex' yéi daaduneiyí áwé hásch tsú,
If itʼs done in front of our children, they (will think),
«Haa tlél wáa sá utí yéi daatooneiyí.
“Itʼs ok if we do it.
{haa haa} Haa húnx̱w ḵa haa tláa ḵa haa éesh x̱á yéi s awsinei.»
Our older brother and our mother and our father have all done it.”
You, they get used to seeing it and it's ok. That's what they think, you know. And how can you, how can you see, the only way I, I really did with my sons, my Joe and Gary, "Nobody ever told me that it was not going to be good for me, and if you want to try to drink whiskey or vodka or beer, bring it home, or I'll go buy it for you but you drink it at home. I don't want you to go out and, and, and drinking it with somebody else." And I told them, "But I didn't, nobody ever told me it was going to bad for me, like cigarettes too." And uh, so they didn't. They haven't, they don't drink. Gary did for a little while. He got up with, he got together with the Glass Door gang. But, but when he started running with, with his wife, he just quit, you know. Heʼs, he doesn't smoke.
Yéi áwé ḵusax̱án!
That's love!
Yeah, yeah for sure. There's so many of our people.
I dachx̱ánxʼi yán kwshé?
Maybe your grandchildren?
Hi! Next door. (the kids who just came in) There are so many of our young people that are so. Even in our age heightened since that happened. You don't really bring out what, the things that happened to you as a child. And there's so many of them, you know. And what are going to do, like those people from up north. What are they going to do in Anchorage and Juneau and Kodiak. They, uh, they'll get a job but they're just going to just barely make it if they do, you know. Just so sad.
I heard uh,
a kát x̱át seiwax'áḵw du saayí,
I forget her name,
yáa deLaguna recordings {ka kaa} káx' ḵu.aa
but on the deLaguna recordings
ch'áakw ḵaa tooshteeyí.
people long ago lived according to protocol.
Yeedát ḵu.aa déi ḵútx̱ shoowaxeex áyá.
It's lost now.
{waa sás i} Wáa sás i tundatáanix̱ sitee a daat?
What are your thoughts about it?
Um, it's going to take a while to get over it. And, and parents have to be involved with their children, and be truthful. And, uh, I really feel bad for those people up north. It happens down here too, but, uh, it's like they're just drowning in all that, you know, they're trying to hang on. Go to Anchorage and maybe we'll get a job at a hospital as, doing something, and, uh, it's really... And these are the older people, and they're kids getting mixed up in all this bad stuff and they just don't know how to deal with it, you know. It is bad. It's really a sad thing. And all we can do is just pray about it. Do you know that, that uh, our people always knew there was a god.
They called him, «Haa Shagéinyáa.»
“Our Protector.”
Daa sá?
Haa Shagéinyáa.
Our Protector.
Haa Shagéinyáa.
Our Protector.
Our, our, uh, Protection? Protector. Protector. Yeah, they always knew that. And, uh, it's really not too late if you can just, just, uh, talk to the kids. Even Joe and Gary were 5, uh, 3 and, and 7 when I moved back up here. And uh, I told them right from then on, I didn't quit drinking, I used to go out on weekends, not all the time, but, and I just told them, nobody told me it was going to be wrong for me. But it is. And uh, uh, you just have to be truthful with your kids. You have to take time. Especially, I was on all kinds of committies up here, and I was on the school board, the city council, Ḵwáan board and, and Johnson O'Malley and all that and teaching the language at the school and, but I'd still take time after, right after dinner and talk to them about things I think they should know. And um, and never lost that contact with them. And, and, and so they knew, you know, what to expect. It is a sad thing. It's just um, sometimes I think if our people could get educated enough, even the older ones, they can be able to get through to some of them. We're not going to save all of them, but certainly there are some that are going to listen, you know. Uh, they may as well have just killed all of us. That's how sad it is. The United States just, just absolutely walks all over us. They uh, it's just like when we were going to school; I had a cavity in my teeth right here and I went to the dentist and he said, "Oh, I'll put you on a list." Six months later I asked him, I said, "When are you going to get around to my teeth?" He looked in my mouth and he said, "Oh, they're all um, you've got cavities all over so I'm just going to pull them." He put shots in my mouth and I could feel him when he was pulling the last one out. When he left he had just big bottles of teeth. I met some of the kinds in Barrow and Anchorage and those places and they told me the same thing. That dentist just pulled their teeth. He wasn't filling their teeth he was just pulling it. And I just thought, I used to get so mad I thought to myself, I'll sue them just for that. Just for my teeth.
A saayí gé ḵudzitee cavity?
Is there a word for cavity?
{nee} Huh? Cavity, wáa sás iyasáa, Lingít x̱'éináx̱?
How do you say “cavity” in Tlingit?
I oox̱ wuditl'úḵ.
Your tooth is infected. [ This means ʼrottenʼ for things that are dead, but ʼinfectedʼ for things that are alive.]
It's infected. Aaá. Rotten.
So, you know there's so many things. Gwál yú x̱'aháat ch'a yéi gugéink' x̱'éit shukḵwatáan.
I'll open that door a little bit.
I want some more coffee if there's any. Could you see if there's anymore? Aaá.
Ch'as t'ooch' gé?
Just black?
Oh, gunalchéesh. Wa.é ḵu.aa?
Thank you. How about you?
T'ooch' tsú wa.é? Mmm.
And for you, black?
Thank you.
Aaá, yéi yatee.
You're welcome. [Yes, so be it.]
Tle ldakát áwé sh tóo kg̱eeltóow {daa sá}
You will learn all of
daa sá {yáa} yáa camera,
whatever (through) this camera,
daa sá i een katulaneegée
whatever we tell you
ḵaa tsoo ch'a g̱óotʼaa aandáx̱ wáa sé i een kadulneegée áwé wa.éich ḵwá i yátxʼi een áwé kakg̱eenéek aadé {ya} ḵutoostéeyi yé
and also whatever they tell you in different places, you will tell your children yourself how we used to live
ḵa aadé hél haa kawdaxéel'i yé atyátx'ix̱ haa sateeyí.
and how we weren't troubled when we were children.
Áwéi has du een kakg̱eenéek
So you will tell them
ch'áakw aadé at téeyin yé aadé sagóowun yé haa ḵusteeyí.
how things used to be a long time ago, how joyous our culture was.
Á áwé
hasdu een kakg̱eenéek.
what you will tell them.
Yéi x̱áawé.
That's right.
Yeedát ḵu.aas ch'as
But now
has {ji jil} Yeah.
Wáa sá yakḵwaḵáa?
What am I trying to say?
Yisikóo! Yisikóo de.
You know! You already know.
Video games.
No kidding, for sure.
Ash koolyát.
Playing games.
«Ash jikoolyát» kwshé, video games?
Maybe video games are «ash jikkoolyát?»
Yées saayí áwé.
It's a new word.
Yeah, for sure.
Ḵúnáx̱ yagéiyi aa dleit ḵáa saayí
There are lots of English words
tlél, tlél Lingít x̱'éináx̱.
not in Tlingit.
Ch'as, «Tlél haa aayí áwé,»
It's always, “It's not ours,”
ax̱ een, ax̱ een has sh kawdlineek nooch.
they always tell me.
«Dleit ḵáa, dleit ḵáa aayí áwé.
“Thatʼs a white manʼs thing.
Tlél, tlél Lingít x̱'éináx̱.»
Not, not in Tlingit language.”
[At shooḵ]
Dax̱.aa áyá yaa kanajúx.
The second one is rolling.
Gwál ch'as daax'oon wínits x̱'áak uyéx̱.
Maybe only four minutes remain.
Mhm. Um.
Ch'oo yéi haa gusgéink'i áwé wé Presbyterian church x̱á yáax' yéi wootee.
When we were still little, there was a Presbyterian church here.
Á áwé
ax̱ éesh ḵa ax̱ tláa
my father and my mother
aadé natoo.átch x̱á xáanaax' wáang̱aneins.
we would walk there in the evenings sometimes.
Tlei ch'a wé ax̱ éesh g̱ushkáx' áwé táach x̱at ujaaḵch.
I'd just fall asleep right on my dad's lap.
Atx̱ áwéi
From there
at dawn,
sitgawsáanx' áwé,
héikʼ, about eleven o'clock shákdé
no, at about eleven o'clock maybe
wé Sunday school Presbyterian church-x'.
the Sunday school at the Presbyterian church.
A ítdáx̱ áwé tle wéi
After that
Salvation {arm dé} Armydé ntoo.átch.
weʼd go to the Salvation Army (church).
Tlél déi Leengít tlénx' ḵwá du x̱ánx̱ ugoot.
No important people were going to (this service?) at that time.
Á áwé haa toowú asinéekw.
So we felt bad about it.
Ách áwéi
That's why
du x̱ánde ntoo.átch x̱á at yátx'ix̱ haa sateeyí.
we went to them (Salvation Army) when we were children.
"Get the drum for me! Get the drum for me!"
Tláakw yaa kx̱ashxíxch.
Iʼd take off running fast.
Ḵa wéi flag tsú.
And the flag too.
Wáa sás iyasáa, "I was bashful?"
How do you say,
{kux̱l} Kux̱liḵéi.
I'm shy about it.
At kux̱liḵéi.
I'm shy.
Á áwé
ḵúnáx̱ haa nuch.
we were really noisy.
{a ít} A ítdáx̱ áwé wé Salvation Armydáx̱ yux̱ wutoo.aadée áwé,
Afterward, when we left the Salvation Army,
héeng̱aa áwé ntoo.átch.
we'd go for water.
Wé Harvey Milton áa yéi téeyi yé yú éiḵ,
The beach where Harvey Milton used to live,
héen anax̱ kéi [kaawa.úk],
water [came] up [out of the ground],
it was just a spring, natural spring.
«Góon,» ák.wé?
Is it «góon»?
Goon. Aax̱ áwé héen tooyáa nuch.
Spring water. From there we'd pack water. [‹goon› is “spring” whereas ‹góon› is ʼgoldʼ.]
Hé ax̱ k'idaakáx' yéi yateeyi aa Punky, her and Esther tsú, Audrey, héen.
The one that lives nextdoor to me, Punky (Rosemary Bartels), her and Esther too, (and) Audrey, (theyʼd be packing) water.
Á áwé tléix'dahéen áwé tle
So, this one time,
{du, du} du x'eisháyi áwé haa káx̱ akaawax̱eech tle hú du aayée tsú.
she dumped her bucket (of water) on us and then the other one (dumped) hers (on us) too.
Neildé áwéi yaa kandag̱áx̱ tle du léelk'úch tsú uwax̱ísht.
She went home crying and then her grandmother spanked her too.
[At.shooḵ] Aw shucks.
Yax̱ yaa ḵukg̱ahéinín áwé herring tsú kéi ux'aakch, x̱á.
Whenever springtime comes around again, the herring would swim up, you know.
Á áwé wé
And the
wé, wé dock-de haa, haa lunagúḵch.
we'd run to the dock.
Aax̱ áwéi ch'a yáa tléix' yateeyi hook
From there just this one hook
tíx' aadé too.áx̱wch wé herring
we'd tie a line to it, and the herring
shatoolx̱óot' nuch x̱á.
we'd jig for them.
Táakw ḵu.aa áwé,
In the winter however,
yaa, yisikóo gé héi lake wéi
the, you know that lake
post office-dé {yaa n} yaa neegúdi x̱á lake áa yéi téeyin? Yei xaawé, aaá.
when you're walking toward the post office there was a lake there? It is, yes.
Yáax' áwéi wé, wé k'isáani hásch
Here all of the young boys
wé dleit aax̱ has anaxít'ch.
would sweep the snow off.
{ayáx̱} Ayáx̱ wultʼéexʼee áwé x̱áa,
When it gets frozen enough,
xáanaax' aadé s na.átch aag̱áa áwé wé
in the evenings they'd go there and then
wé, am, x̱'aan át has akoolgaanch.
the, um, they'd light the fire.
Tle aag̱áa áwé wé marshmallow.
And then the marshmallow.
Chʼu tle ch'a yáa skates a tóot áwéis x̱á át ḵunal.úsch.
Theyʼd just go around in skates playfully.
Tlax̱ wáa sá sagóowun.
It was so much fun.
Ah, shucks.
Well, how do you feel? Would you like to continue?
Gwál seig̱án?
Tomorrow maybe?
X'oon gaaw sá?
What time?
Ts'ootaat gé yak'éi?
Is morning all right?
I got an appointment at 1 at the clinic.
About 2:30 shákdé.
About 2:30 maybe.
Two thirty shákdé? OK.
2:30 maybe? OK.
Sh tóot ḵukḵwadashée daa sá daa yóo x̱'agax̱tula.aadí.
Iʼll search my mind for whatever we are going to talk about.
I'm going to search my mind for what we'll talk about.
Ḵúnáx̱ yak'éi.
Very good.
Gwál dax̱náx̱ yuwháan, ḵach'oo
Maybe both of you, or
x̱áat daa yéi jikg̱eenéi seig̱án, daa sá?
are you working on fish tomorrow, or what?
Du een gé i tuwáa sigóo yóo x̱'ala.átk?
You want to talk with her?
I will. Iʼll come and uh.