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Maarten Takens

The youth in the most cold place on the earth

There is a place on Earth where the cold invades everything.

In 1926 it won the absolute record low temperature in an inhabited territory, surpassing - 71 degrees below zero. We speak of Oymyakon, a freezing cold place located in the northeast of Russia, in which when its fishermen get a fish in only thirty seconds already this frozen or where the sputum throwed by the residents land on the floor like a solid ice block.

 

To know a little bit better this city, we can say that Yakutia, where this town is located is with its three million square kilometres the most bigger in the Russian Republic, about six times Spain. In addition to being one of the Earth's richest regions, as it has reserves of Platinum, silver, uranium, coal, oil, gas... 40% of Russian gold is extracted from Yakutia as well as one of every five diamonds in the world.

 

The Yakuts were a Turkish people who colonized Siberia in the 14th century settling in this city in 1640 because its Valley is an ideal, given that despite its extreme climate surrounding mountain ranges prevent that the heavy masses of cold air, covering the Valley causing the temperature to be relatively bearable escape and even allows 35 degrees are reached in the summer. In the Soviet era, the Valley was famous because here lived some of the older men of the country as Fiodor Arnosov, a hunter who died in 1967 at the age of 109 years old.

 

Today, the population has 2,300 inhabitants divided between cabins and some cement buildings on stilts, which sink on land several meters deep so they not sinking because of the mud that is created when the months of the thaw. Entirely made in wood common dwellings, stand out for their private bathroom separated from the House, which is easily distinguished by the ordered ice blocks in the door and that replace the tap water. Perhaps the only element that difference with its ancestors is the use of televisions that closer them to the world, although the use of radios or even mobile phones is not very widespread by stranger who make us.

 

The Oymyakon Youth

 

When we arrive to that point the question that comes to us is that what can the youth do in a place like this, in principle, as inhospitable as this, they carry, as having fun, if they are really happy. The answers to all these questions are positive.

 

Many of the young people who live in this small town are engaged in the hunt for Martens and hares either bred cows and reindeer, because there is little industry. On the other hand, the least advantaged occupy their time in the breeding of wild horses Yakuts, famous for its incredible resistance, which has enabled them to even be used for expeditions to the Pole.

 

 However, optimism reigns in Oymyakon because many of them are planning to obtain the titles of lawyer, physician or Manager and succeed as well appear to been the son of the doctor, Alexander Krylov. On his return from Yakutsk, where he grew up professionally in the construction sector, is developing the tourist infrastructure of the icy Russian population. A faith that has succeeded, as it has raised the first hotel with hot running water in each of its 10 rooms institutionalizing the major social event of the year, the Festival of the Cold Pole, where as if it were a world event chooses to their particular Miss Cold Pole. We don't know if it will be for that reason, but the case is that the famous Hollywood actor Ewan McGregor, made a scale in his tour on a motorcycle that led him to discover this lost place of the Russian steppe.

 

The dull winter landscape that we assume dominate the town is transformed on saturday where gather young people in a crowded House of culture. At the gate they shed their fur coats and boots to make way for ties, heels and miniskirts, a party in every rule to the rhythm of the classic Disco music or even some singing competition.

 

Next Monday, when the Sun shydly shines over Oymyakon, columns of smoke to rise above the beautiful log cabins and their owners imagine thanks to their satellite dishes found on a beach more than 50 degrees... above zero.

 

Written by Eurodesk Qualified Multiplier, IVAJ Valencia.