Ancient living conditions of the Inuit
Note : Notice: in your opinion, what was the most difficult element they had to bear? Why?
“In the morning it was very cold in the igloo, and you had to be tough to get up, especially when we had to put on kamiks that were frozen like ice. I had trouble getting up in the morning. It was cold in the tent in autumn, before lighting the stove. Kamiks were no less frozen, and the only way to warm them up was to wear them for a few hours. The more hardiest men would rise in the cold, donned their frozen boots and went out to hunt. They only take a cup of hot water for lunch, because there was no food, but we were used to it. Hunters had food for themselves and their family only when they returned from hunting. When a hunter took game near the camp, they would return quickly to feed his starving family. Sometimes, not all the time, there were times of scarcity, and it was very hard for children. The men did the best they could to see that all had enough food, especially children. From time to time, they had no choice but to give them dog meat to eat. I liked it (and if the dog is a healthy animal, its meat has a very similar taste to the meat of polar bears.). Fortunately, I’ve never met anyone who has had to eat human flesh, though I’ve heard that some did in the past, when it was absolutely necessary. I think it goes back much further in time, Mind you, these are just rumors.
Traditional life was wonderful, but at times it was terribly difficult. We had fewer worries, and the money was certainly not a concern, because we do not use it much. Our main concern was the food. ”
“Tumivut“, no 7, Automne 1995, p.21-22. Cité dans Alain BEAULIEU, Les autochtones du Québec, Québec, Nuit Blanche, 2000, p.89.