Nainen talvivaatteissa seisoo hangen päällä ja kerää pajusta oksia. Mustavalkokuva. Woman wearing winter clothes stands in snow and collects willow branches. Black and white picture.

A girl collects willow twigs, 1959

Picture: Valtonen Rudolf, Historical Picture Collection, Finnish Heritage Agency

I want to talk about which calendar to live by. When we came to Finland, this question came up at the church in Imatra. All the women said, “What are we going to do now?” The priest said, “If you live here, you live by the local calendar.” And all doubts disappeared from me, all fumbling, “according to this or that”. I live according to the local calendar, but I follow my own traditions. That is, I do everything in the Russian way, but for the holidays here. It suits me and to everyone close to me, too. This year I baked and cooked everything in two pieces (laughs). One package for myself, the other one I gave away as a gift. And so we celebrate. So, live by the local calendar. Everything goes fine.

Raisa