Rant: Homeless – a very true story about ‘that woman holding all her belongings in a plastic bag’

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Most locals have probably seen the cover of the most recent Svalbardposten and know people (or were among them) joking about “that woman holding all her belongings in a plastic bag.” I will tell you her true story.

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Arriving from France seven weeks ago, she is haunting the streets of Longyearbyen, Pyramiden and Barentsburg. She put an ad in Svalbardposten looking for a flat so, technically, yes,, it seems she has no roof. Even according the housing standards of St. Martin’s Canal in Paris, sharing a less than a two-by-two meter tent with a dog definitely makes her homeless. I’m sure many of you have seen “This little doggy, isn’t it sweet? Please give him a sausage,”* tied up at the campsite, Fruene or Svalbardhallen.

And for whom encountered this woman at the swimming pool, well, everybody needs a bath sometimes. I was even told that on Saturday she squatted inside a warm bus the whole day among the tourists of a big boat ashore. Maybe some of them even took pity on her and gave her some money!

Seriously speaking, I never imagined helping one of our “colleagues” in the mainstream media with a mere snapshot would have such effect on citizens here?

So, I hope you had a lot of fun. I had some writing this self-derisive text. I am usually known as “the Swiss girl with the dog” – here it could be “the crazy woman who wants to works with Russians” (yes I know some of you also think this) or maybe it will be “the only homeless woman of Longyearbyen.” Well, as long as people know who I am…I don’t care.

Meet you soon for a laugh! 🙂

Marion Prudhon
Official bag lady of the coolest newspaper on Earth

(*thanks Terry Pratchett for this one)

About Post Author

Mark Sabbatini

I'm a professional transient living on a tiny Norwegian island next door to the North Pole, where once a week (or thereabouts) I pollute our extreme and pristine environment with paper fishwrappers decorated with seemingly random letters that would cause a thousand monkeys with a thousand typewriters to die of humiliation. Such is the wisdom one acquires after more than 25 years in the world's second-least-respected occupation, much of it roaming the seven continents in search of jazz, unrecognizable street food and escorts I f****d with by insisting they give me the platonic tours of their cities promised in their ads. But it turns out this tiny group of islands known as Svalbard is my True Love and, generous contributions from you willing, I'll keep littering until they dig my body out when my climate-change-deformed apartment collapses or they exile my penniless ass because I'm not even worthy of washing your dirty dishes.
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