- Project Runeberg -  Through Siberia - the land of the future /
141

(1914) [MARC] Author: Fridtjof Nansen Translator: Arthur G. Chater - Tema: Russia
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UP THE YENISEI
141
scattered over the ground and looked more like bushes
than anything else. But soon there were rather more
of them, and these were thus the first beginnings of
forest that wc met with here in latitude 69° 43’ N., or
about the latitude of Tromso.
At nine o’clock wc anchored off Khetinsky Island,
opposite Krestova.
That evening wc were to have sturgeon for the first
time, and our excellent Alexei made us the national dish
selanka, sl strong soup with pieces of the fat sturgeon
floating in it ; it is also flavoured with olives, capers,
pickled gherkins, tomatoes and anything else of that
kind. The sturgeon is eaten in the soup. It is a re
markably good fish, and the whole thing was excellent.
But it is characteristic of the Russians that their national
dish should be a soup. A Russian dinner without soup
is unthinkable, and the soup is actually the principal
dish of the meal.
Friday, September 5. This morning wc saw a
steamer ahead. She was the Lena and was lying at
anchor at Ananyino to unload a miscellaneous cargo
from the lighter that was with her. Wc also stopped
to get petroleum for the engine from the same lighter.
This takes a long time, and Vostrotin and I, there
fore, went ashore for a walk. There were four or five
houses standing in a row on the top of the river-bank.
A rich trader owns this place, and does a large trade
with the natives on the tundra. This was evident also
from the numerous sledges of every kind that lay all
over the slope below the houses.
I saw there a big house-sledge with one large room,
which was covered with tarpaulin, and probably also
with skins, to keep it closed and warm ; and there was
a cooking-stove in it as well. This sledge was drawn
by eight reindeer over the tundra. There were several

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