April 6, 2018
In Nelmin Nos, we stayed at the home of Veronica Selemateva. She is an entrepreneur. She has a small grocery store, and now she has opened her house to homestays. She has a small banya (sauna building) next to her house. When you go into a house in Russia, you take off your boots and put on slippers. This helps keep the floors clean
We spent the afternoon and evening eating, talking, and going to the sauna. We had a fairly substantial tea consisting of tea, bread, cookies, salami, and chocolate. A couple of hours later we had a dinner of soup, meatballs and rice, bread, cookies ,chocolate… The diet is very heavy on meat, usually reindeer, beef, or chicken, with a fair amount of fish. They eat salmon and whitefish baked and in soups. There are few vegetable or fruits. Deserts are usually cookies or sometimes cake.
We slept spread around the house. I slept on a bed, which I was grateful for because I was very sore from the snowmobile ride. Most people slept on mats on the floor.
Saturday, April 7, was Raven Day in Nelmin Nos. The return of the ravens ( or crows; it was a little unclear) signals that spring is on its way. The town has a celebration with a small stage set up for singing, dancing, skits, and speeches. People wear their traditional costumes. Or their crow costumes. The group photo includes members of the dance troupe ‘Hayar.’ It it is quite festive. We were asked to sing at the closing ceremonies, and we gave some gifts away. Below are the festival ground
And their are reindeer races!
The young woman on this side is Alexandra, one of the delegates to the Samish who will be visiting us next summer.
The girl second from the left is the daughter of the people who owned the guesthouse.
Later, we also gave gifts to Veronica, and to the news crew. Then we got in the low-pressure-tire truck and headed back to Naryan-Mar.