It's only 37 days to Christmas! And the last moment to send your wish list to JOULUPUKKI, Father Christmas. I decided to be really brave, and traveled to Lapland to meet him, face to face.
He lives in northern Finland, Korvatunturi-fell, which stands 486 meters above sea level. Korvatunturi means Ear Fell in Finnish. It is believed that the ear-shaped structure of the fell allows Father Christmas to hear the wishes of every child in the world. Part of the fell is in the Russian side of border, therefore all visitors are requested to have written permission from the Finnish Border Guard. Also; there are no roads that directly lead to the fell, hiking trails provide the only access.
Korvatunturi is Santa's private home, but he works in Joulupukin Pajakylä, 300 kilometers from his home, in the Arctic Circle, near Rovaniemi. That's where his official post office is located, and where all mail send to Korvatunturi, ends up.
Father Christmas and his little Elf-helpers pack a reindeer-sleigh full of gifts, and Santa starts his Christmas tour, every year the 23. December. Finnish national television, and some 70 foreign TV-stations show the event "live". To tell you the truth; the magical sunshine in the background reveals that the footage is actually not live. During Christmas Korvatunturi has KAAMOS, polar night, which means it's dim all day long. The filming is done each year couple of months after Christmas, when the spring sun starts shining... Or, maybe Korvatunturi has got it's own magical sun, what do I know? I've never been in Korvatunturi. I met Santa in his work-office, in Rovaniemi.
The Arctic Circle is the latitude in the Northern Hemisphere where the sun can remain continuously above or below horizon 24 hours. So the sun never sets for at least one day in summer and never rices for at least one day in winter.
"So far Santa Claus has received about 17 million letters from 198 different countries. At the Christmas time Santa can get about 32 000 letters/day. Top 7 countries are 1.China, 2.Italy, 3.Poland, 4.United Kingdom, 5.Finland, 6.Japan, 7.Russia. Christmas 2014 Santa received around 500 000 letters."-quotes Santa's Grand Post Office bulletin board.
Letters sent to Santa are divided into piles according to the country of the origin.
Some letters end up framed to the wall, like this one:
It would be fun if you'd read this. I wish that I would become a hero of the nature, I would rescue the nature, and it would be wonderful if the globe would not be destroyed and if there would not be any disasters. I want to switch into using water power, and I hope the others would also save the nature and recycle. I grow a grapefruit tree and it's now about 20 centimeters tall. When it's big, I am going to send it to developing countries. Please sent them rain cloud, that would be the best wish come true. As a gift to myself I'm wishing for a lava-lamp, hopefully ecological.
With love, Sini
(an elephant would be nice...♡)"
My wish list was not that thoughful ... But it got thumbs up!
If you didn't write to Santa, yet, here's the contact information:
JOULUPUKKI / SANTA CLAUS
Pajakylä 96930 Napapiiri