Living in the remote and harsh environment of Siberia can be a challenge, as resources are scarce and even seemingly simple daily tasks can take a whole day. In this article, we will take a look at the daily tasks and challenges faced by a family living in Yakutia, a region known for its extreme climate and rugged terrain.
The Wooden Bathhouse
In Yakutia, locals dedicate their weekends to doing laundry and washing in their wooden bathhouse, which is the only option for maintaining personal hygiene in a region without running water. The bathhouse is heated by wood-burning stoves and the temperature inside the steam room can reach up to 70 degrees or higher. It takes them 5 hours and requires a lot of wood. The locals will usually shower only once or twice a week because of the time it takes to heat up the bathhouse.
The Harsh Winter Climate
The harsh winter climate in Yakutia poses many challenges for the locals. To keep warm, they fill up the stove with wood twice or even three times a day for nine months of the year. They also use outdoor toilets, which may seem less convenient but is actually more hygienic as frozen temperatures make it difficult to have working pipes and indoor toilets without sewage become unpleasant.
Laundry and Hygiene
To maintain hygiene and cleanliness, the family must collect snow from the garden to use for washing and laundry. Every Sunday, the mother and daughter take on the task of washing the family’s clothes by hand using the snow water. They then hang the clothes outside in the garden to dry in the freezing winter air, a traditional method that helps to kill any remaining germs and leave the clothes clean and refreshed.
Food and Cooking
The mother is well known in the village for her delicious cooking skills and is always teaching her daughter new dishes and training in the kitchen. One of the family’s favorite dishes is dumplings filled with meat and beef. They put the dumplings on the terrace outside to keep them frozen while they prepare for dinner.
Relaxation and Health
After a long day of hard work, the family takes time to relax and rejuvenate. The father and son spend time in the bathhouse, where the temperature can reach up to 70 degrees Celsius. The steam room is a great place to relax and rejuvenate, especially as the outside temperature drops to minus 50 degrees. Once they are finished, they run outside to cool off in the freezing cold air. The difference between the hot steam room and the cold air is believed to have many health benefits including improving circulation and invigorating the body.
Adapting to Adversity: Overcoming Challenges in Yakutia
Living in Yakutia can be a challenge, but the locals have adapted to their environment and have found ways to survive and thrive. They have learned the necessary skills to survive in the extreme climate, and have found ways to maintain personal hygiene and cleanliness, despite the lack of resources. The family’s daily routine is a testament to the resilience and resourcefulness of people living in the rugged and harsh environment of Siberia. The harsh winter climate, lack of resources and the remote location of Yakutia can be difficult but the people living there have found ways to maintain their daily routine and have made it work.