Introduction from Olga Vovk:
This is my attempt to translate one of the Moomin novels written by Tove Marika Jansson (9 August 1914 – 27 June 2001) – a Swedish-Finnish novelist, painter, illustrator and comic strip author. She is best known as the author of the Moomin books. I, first, read her Moomin stories in Russian translation when I was a child. And since that I was fascinated by her stories. You can find more about Tove Marika Jansson on Wikipedia.
I know that some of Moomin novels have already been translated into English. However, when I read these in English I had a feeling that something was lost in translation. Unfortunately, I can’t neither speak Swedish, nor Finnish. Therefore, I choose to use the familiar Russian translation done by V.A. Smirnov (http://lib.ru/JANSSON/mumi-mag.txt) and translate this text into English. I tried my best to preserve the flavor of this beautiful Russian translation and also a flavor of Moomin-dale.
I am doing this for my own amusement and to amuse my American friends and to introduce them to Moomin stories and Moomin characters. I also included original drawings made by Tove Jansson in this blog.
Introduction to the”Moomin-troll and the Wizard hat” story
One cloudy morning, first snow falls on Moomin-dale. It came quietly, thick and silent, and in a few hours it whitened the whole valley.
Moomin-troll was staying on a porch and watching how winter wrapping was a terrain with a white, snowy blanked. He contemplated quietly: “Tonight, we are going to hibernation.”
I should mention that Moomin-trolls always go into hibernation in November (and this is very wise for those who don’t like cold and darkness). Moomin-troll closed the porch door, quietly came near to his mother and whispered:
– Snow is falling.
– I know – answered the Mother -I made the warmest blankets ready for you. You can sleep upstairs in the Western room with Sniff.
– Sniff is snoring terribly. Can I share a room with Snoo-Smumrick instead? – said Moomin-troll.
– As you wish – answered Moomin-mama. – Let’s put Sniff in the Eastern room then.
Moomin-family and all their friends and relatives always take winter hibernation preparations very seriously. That evening, Moomin-mama arranged the dinner table on the porch. This time, instead of a hearty dinner, everybody had only pine needles in their cups. When one is going to sleep through the whole winter, it is absolutely necessary that one’s stomach is full with pine needles and nothing else.
After dinner (which was absolutely tasteless), everybody wished everybody “Good Night” with little more tenderness than usual. And Moomin-mama asked everyone to wash their teeth before going to bed.
Moomin-papa walked around the house and made sure that all doors and window panes were closed. He also covered the big ceiling lantern with a mosquito net to save it from dust. A little later, everyone climbed into their beds, made a cozy crevice, wrapped themselves with warm blankets and started thinking sweet thoughts. And only Moomin-troll said with a heavy sight:
-We are wasting a whole lot of time.
-Not at all – answered Snoo-Smumrick – We have our dreams. And when we woke up, it will be spring already.
-M-m-m – muttered Moomin-troll, sinking deep into a gloomy world of long night dreams.
Outside Moomin-house thick dense snow was falling. The porch was already covered, and heavy clumps were hanging from the roof and window trims.
Soon, the whole Moomin-house should have been transformed into a plump show hill. One by one, all clocks in the Moomin-house stopped. Winter has come.