DOBES Archive

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Bochilikan Etiken
The fairytale was recorded on March 1st 2009 at the kitchen table of Zoja Afanasevna Stepanova; we had sent away her daughter and grandson so that it was very nice and quiet. Only the collector was present. Zoja Afanasevna had written down the fairytale beforehand (in order to get it all right) and more or less read it off.
Reindeer transport
Various photos showing items linked to reindeer transport: 1) a model of a saddle with saddlebags, 2-4) a model as well as a real-life specimen of a covered sled for transporting small children in winter (called kibitka), 5) a cradle for the transport of babies on reindeer back (bebe), 6) saddle bags photographed in an old museum (heruk), 7-9) part of the reindeer harness that carries a little hook to keep the reins off the ground (nepilik), 10-11) a sled and part of the process of making sled runners (by heating and bending them over a fire), 12-17) various reindeer harnessed to sleds standing waiting and in use, both in reindeer herding camps and in/around the village of Sebjan-Kuel, 18-20) riding reindeer (uchak),as well as a herder riding his reindeer.
This is the fifith section of the recording, and it deals with two topics, but RDA went from one to the other without much transition where one could have cut the file. At first she narrates a little story about her grandparents and how a 'snow-man' (called Chuchunja in Sebjan-Kuel Even) had thrown stones at her grandfather, and then she continues by talking a bit about her family, the children of her grandparents.
Anatolij Afanajevich tells how to build a yurt, then a short tale about lazy bird, after that BP asks him to tell how his wife and he went from tundra to Anavgay once in the winter and their snow mobile was broken.
RME told two fairy tales: Uindja and 'wolf and fox hunt rabbits'. The second one is in this session. It is a traditional Even fairy tale about sly fox. The way of telling of RME is very funny: she sings a lot and performs all characters very well.
'Kino' = This very amusing narrative, the fifth of the recording session, describes how an old man in Twajan snuck into the village hall when they showed movies and sat behind the screen, in order to avoid having to pay the 5 kopecks entrance fee; and also how the same old man pretended to blow out a lightbulb in order to darken the room so the film could start. There is a Russian version of the first bit (sneaking behind the screen) in the middle.
This is the beginning of the recording session, in which ZAS told how she, her brother and her sister-in-law had fallen into a so-called naled' (a stretch of river in which water appears on the surface and freezes over only thinly) while travelling by reindeer sled to visit their father in the reindeer herd. It is about 13 minutes long and very animated, and it is a great pity that the video recording didn't work out, because she uses a lot of gestures to describe what was happening.
This is the last section of the recording. At first, RDA tells about how she had taken a tape-recorder to the reindeer herd with her in the summer after she had finished school, and how she had recorded the old women and men in the herd telling her about how life used to be, about old traditions, old folklore, songs, etc. She had left these recordings in a box at home when she left for Yakutsk to go to university, only to find when she came back that her younger sister had overplayed this unique collection of folklore with music. From there she moves on to listing the people in Sebjan who know a lot about old traditions and local history and who could perhaps be asked to contribute their knowledge to the Dobes archive.
On these photos you can see: - fishing salmon with a net on a small lake - cleaning freshly caught salmon - housing in a fishing camp - reindeer herd in a tundra area - reindeer herder watching the herd leaning on his walking stick
'Eggs' = The ninth anecdote of the recording session. A story about how once EIA found a nest of ptarmigan eggs in the tundra when he was with the reindeer herd and took them home (leaving 2, however). When his son and nephew asked where he had found them, he told them that ptarmigans drop eggs when they are hit with a stick when they fly. That evening, the two boys could be seen chasing ptarmigans over the tundra.
'Kids uphill' = The penultimate anecdote of that recording session, about how EIA tied his son and nephew to a dog by their waists and let the dog run uphill, so that the boys had to run with it; this took place in the reindeer herd during a move.
village life, Kamchatka
Several photos taken in the villages of Esso and Anavgai, Bystraja district, Central Kamchatka, where most of the Evens of the region live. 1) Signpost at entrance to Esso 2) the village Esso 3) the ethnography museum, Esso 4) thermal pool in Esso (open all-year-round and very popular with visitors from Petropavlovsk-Kamchatskij) 5) a signpost in the Esso museum grounds that shows the relative distance between Esso and various places (e.g. Anavgai - 25 km, Moscow - 7500 km, Tokyo - 2130 km, Anchorage - 1953 km) 6) smoke from a forest fire that was raging in the vicinity of Esso 7) tulips in a garden in Esso 8) signpost proclaiming 'welcome' at the entrance to Anavgai 9) signpost proclaiming 'good trip' at the exit to Anavgai 10, 11) views of Anavgai village 12) some reindeer herders setting off for the herd on horseback, Anavgai 13) a poster showing traditional scenes, Anavgai
Reindeer herder festival (photos)
Several photos taken during the "Day of the reindeer herder" festival, which takes place in March. 1) Women's lasso-throwing competition, in the village centre, during the first day 2) Men's lasso-throwing competition, in the village centre, during the first day 3) Parade of the reindeer herders on the lake ("Sebjan-Kuel" from which the village takes its name), at the beginning of the second day's festivities, which are the main ones 4) Reindeer herders in parade dress with their reindeer in parade dress, on the lake 5) Boys racing their riding reindeer 6) Men racing their riding reindeer 7) The 10km reindeer sled race (men) 8) A reindeer sled arriving at the finish line of the 10 km race
fishing camp
Various photographs showing life in a traditional Even fishing camp (called by the Russian word 'rybalka') in Central Kamchatka: 1) inhabitants of fishing camps and their accompanying family waiting for the once-yearly helicopter that will take them and lots of dry goods (noodles, sugar, oil, etc) from Esso to the various fishing camps 2-3) loading the dry goods from a truck to the helicopter 4, 5) fishing camp 6) smokehouse for smoking and drying salmonid fish 7) big storage house (balagan) 8) small storage house (udan) 9) winter house (chian) 10) traditional yurt (djuu) 11) wooden dogsled stored for the summer 12) dried salmon hanging in yurt 13) baking bread at fire in yurt, in background low teatable 13b) boiling water in kettle hanging from hook over fire 14) trout caught in net 15) drawing in the net 16) caught trout 17) flyfishing 18) cleaning fish in river 19-21) the return journey to Esso: by horse, boat to cross the river, and on foot (and then several hours by car)
KKK gave a brief description of the early history of the village.
In this session, AVZ told about how he and a fellow soldier went to steal chickens while serving in the army - to their great surprise, there was a huge chicken there which did not let itself be caught easily, and which later turned out to be a turkey, which they'd never seen before. After that, he told about how it was to live in the local boarding school.
village life, Sebjan-Kuel
Some photos showing village scenes, Sebjan-Kuel: 1) the village from above 2) a village street 3) signpost at the entrance to the village 4) children skiing in their spare time 5) a noticeboard at school, written in Even: “What? When? Why? Where?” 6) a sign on village outskirts in Even “Take care of the woods” 7) a sign at entry of clubhouse in Even “Come, visit!” 8-10) a painting on the wall of the old clubhouse showing scenes of reindeer herding life (lassooing a reindeer, milking a doe) 11-13) a panel on the wall of the new clubhouse showing scenes of traditional life 14) a snowmobile with a passenger sled 15) sleds with ice for drinking water in the village 16) a riding reindeer (uchak) 'parked' outside a house in the village
'Live duck' = This short narrative (only about 1 minute in length in Even) told about how EIA's son went hunting while on leave from the army; he shot a duck and brought it home in his rucksack. The next morning they noticed the rucksack was moving and took a look - it turned out the duck hadn't been killed after all, had just been grazed on its beak, and so lost consciousness, and it flew away as soon as they took it outside. This was the eighth narrative of the session.
'Food from sky' = This brief narrative, the third of the session, deals with how they used to deliver food by plane to Twajan and throw bags and crates of sugar, tea, flour, etc from the flying plane, and how once a bag of sugar fell onto the roof of EPA's childhood home and broke her brother's new skis.