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Thursday, 1 January 2009

Happy New Year!

It’s been bitterly cold here over the last few days. We went out for a short walk yesterday to exercise off some of the Christmas chocolates, and it was so cold I half-expected to see a reindeer (left.)
The festive season is a busy time for parents; thank goodness we can just go down to the supermarket and stock up on groceries. I wouldn’t fancy having to get up and milk the reindeer before breakfast to feed the family.
The Sami people (once known as Laplanders) of Sweden and Finland traditionally relied on their reindeer herds for milk (used to make cheese) and meat. But their way of life is now under threat. Tourism is becoming an important money-spinner for the Sami, but it’s a mixed blessing, which may accelerate the decline of their culture.

Image: Milking of the Reindeer, Penny Magazine, 20 April 1833. Author’s collection.

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