«True people» (Nenei nenecha) – self-name of Nenets, the indigenous people of the Yamal peninsula, and the name of the complex 2015–2016 ethnographic expedition. Project participants and the visitors of the resource will be the part of the reindeer herders's family during the whole year just to «dive» in the casual life of the modern XXI century nomads.


It's beginning of November, and it's time to tell about our October in Yar-Sale tundra, Yamal peninsula, when re observed a real change from autumn to winter. From October 10th to 18th in 6 kms distance from our chum there were fishermen huts located. There lived fishermen "brigate" from Marra-Sale (you can read about our visiting Marra-Sale here: Marra-Sale camp), which came for autumn chatch. Ice layer on the river is hard enough now to ride a snowbike.  

Our new neighbors visited us several times, and every time these evening visits were accompanied with tea and movies. After generators became an inherent part of everyday life in tundra, choosing new movies is very important for nomads. Nenets are constantly exchanging movies, downloading new films at the railway workers etc. 

We have with us a lot of movies to watch together with our hosts. Every family member has own individual preferences: Kotja likes thrillers, Albina - family movies. and kids are usually for animation of any kind. From bit variety of our film list the most popular are two: "Red Ice" (after a book of Khanty writer E.Aipin, dedicated to Kazym outbreak of Khanty minority at the at dawn of the Soviet time) and "Fast Runner" (a story from the life of Eskimos filmed by an Eskimo director, with a lot of everuday life details, which is especially interesting to our nomadic family). So when guests are visiting our chum, our hosts wants us to watch one of these two movies.  

Our guests, fishermen from Marra-Sale:

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Our argish near fishermen's hut at Mordy-Yaha river: 

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These days the temperature goes down to -7-13 degrees Celcius below zero. There is no firewood near our camp this time, so we have to collect firewood in the areas far away. 

(tp continue reading please press "Читать полностью")

Kostja is going to watch the herd:  

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Albina finished to make the yagushka (female winter fur coat) and gave it to us to cover during the sleep at nights. Nenets-nomads are traditionally sleeping in chum under such yagushkas. Every nomadic family's member has this kind of "cover". At the start of our expedition we brought to tundra with us sleeping bags for extremely low temperatures, but our hosts insisted that we cover ourselves at nights only in "traditional way".  The reason a traditional taboos for women: they are not allowed to step on some particular objects, and bed stuff is among them. So Alexandra could not sleep in her sleeping bag. In the non-moving chums (for example, in Marra-Sale or in the chum of Albina's brothers) people are sleeping under normal covers. Also the special "night yagushkas" for sleeping is one the the non-spocken sigh of a well-to-do reindeer herders' family - not every family can afford to make them for the whole family.  

Albina is sewing, Kostja is making "pyasiki"  ("buttons" for reindeer gear)  of plastics:

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In the summer time the local "commersants" buy reindeers velvel antlers, and in the autumn and winter time  - hardened horn by weight. We sawn down the forhead horn of riding bulls: it's hard for reindeers to search for food if they still have these horns in winter. Depending on the Yamal area, these «commersants» buy horn for different price. This year's price is 600-60 Rubles for 1 kilo. Often horn is changed to gazoline - 30 kgs horn for one barrel gazoline (200 l). So it's a quite good business for "commersants" - usually a barrel one can buy for 7-9 thousands Rubles. But unfortunately the snowbike of our relatives was broken, and there was no chance for such a change. 

This autumn we hoped to get gazoline in Bovanenkovo from the public service organization of Yamal region in Bovanenkovo. Unfortunately we didn't get gazoline after all, and so we have only several liters of gazoline - enough just to tun on a generator once a week to recharge our mobile phones. We have to find another solution after approaching Yuribei lake.   

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Kostja decided to move in the Southern direction where we left our winder stuff.  

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