The Old Man is from the next village over. Been friends with the Grandma for ages. Smokes his pipe non-stop and likes conversing with the newcomers , using plenty of long meaningful pauses for added dramatic effect.
This was the right person to tell us about the behind-the-scenes of the nomadic tribal life.
-So… – we start, nonchalantly, – how is married life in Tsaatan taiga? Villages are so small… People ever cheat on each other?
The old man gazes at the sky for a moment, then puffs on his pipe, stretches out his legs and stares at the mountains.
-Well… I’ve been married to my woman for 50 years, and yeah, at times I felt like strangling her, but it all worked out…. We’re very happy. The youngsters – those do fool around sometimes…
An inquisitive tourist draws nearer, all tingly with curiosity:
-But… where? The whole village is wide open, with only 5 yurts around… how do people pull it off?
The old man blows out the last smoke, taps out the pipe, shuffles his feet, glances inside his coat.
-Well, you got yourself enough room – the hills, the valleys, the waterfalls… Or when you need to ride down to the valley for salt, or some other errands…
Just like we thought.
It’s no different here from New York, Shangai or Moscow.
Just closer to nature.