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It is estimated that the Finnish Santa Claus (locally called Joulupukki, or “Yule goat” – no, seriously) has received over eight million letters to date. And as many as 600,000 letters continue arriving every year from over 150 countries.

Very few of us will have heard where exactly Santa lives – other than somewhere in Finland. He resides atop Korvatunturi, a fell in Eastern Lapland. Very kindly though, the Big Jolly Man uses the city of Rovaniemi near the Arctic Circle for receiving mail, making it easier for thousands of us to address our yearly Christmas pleas to a more or less central location. If one could call 66°30’N central, anyway.

I have never been too much of a Santa person. But this year I have decided to join the thousands of correspondents around the world and write a letter to Santa. I hope to make it a lasting tradition.

Before I begin though, I would like to acknowledge certain propaganda regarding Santa’s TRUE residence. In particular, some unnamed nationalities (read: Danes) have been trying to convert the world into thinking that Santa really lives in Greenland. In a reconciliatory effort, certain third parties (read: a large Anglo-Saxon nation) are suggesting a North Pole compromise.

I need not say more. You should all be ashamed of yourselves. Go to Korvatunturi in person and better hope the REAL Santa forgives you.




Santa Claus
Santa Claus Village
Arctic Circle

Dear Santa,

How was your year? I know I have never written to you before, but I used to live in Finland, too.

I have been a good girl this year. Actually, I could have been better but I have been good enough. I have worked really hard at my job, visited my mama in Latvia regularly and made breakfast for my ex-boyfriend regularly, too. I have travelled a lot to see my friends abroad, but there are too many to see everyone. I have also been laughing a lot to cheer up the unhappy people around. Some just never seem to lose the gloomy look on their faces, don’t you think? Unfortunately, I have been told I laugh too much. I guess I need to laugh less.

I know I could have been a better girl and it’s okay if you don’t bring me anything this Christmas. But it would be great if you could please just do a few things. I realise you are not God, but maybe you two are related somehow.

First, I would really like to be promoted in spring. Could you mention this to HR? I have been an Analyst for four years now, and the title is starting to wear off. Do you remember a girl in the downstairs team that I used to work with in my previous job, too? She was a year below me then but has now joined my current work a position higher. How is this possible, Santa? Please, please, fix this quickly.

Then, I really want the Finnish national team to win the World Ice Hockey Championship in May. Could you please arrange that? I know you support them, too, but they haven’t won since 1995. Don’t you think it’s a long time? You probably wonder why I am not asking for Latvia, but they never win anything, anyway.

Also, Santa, it would be great if you could convince my mama to visit me in London sometime. I have given up. She has not visited me in any country I have lived in. Not even in Finland, imagine! She says she is scared because she doesn’t speak English. Maybe you could write her a letter, or something. She doesn’t speak Finnish, either, but is very good with Google Translator.

Perhaps you could also call my boss so she’d send me on work rotation next year? I think it would be fun! I don’t know if I should ask for Belgrade, Sarajevo or Tbilisi, but I’m sure you could decide this for me. Could you? Oh, and I would prefer Krasnoyarsk in Russia to everything else (it is very pretty there, almost like in Lapland!), but better don’t ask her that, she’ll get emotional.

Yes, Santa, before I forget, could you also wire the brains of that cute guy so he would like me, too? I’m sure you know who I’m talking about. It’s okay if he doesn’t write every day, I promise to treat him well, anyway. Your dialects must be a bit different, but he speaks very good English, with the cutest accent in the world! Thank you, Santa!

I also wanted to ask for a new camera to take better pictures, but then I probably need to learn to use my old camera first. Maybe you could teach me? The pictures on your website look very professional. I’d love to see you in Finland for a lesson. One thing you could bring me this Christmas though is a tripod. I think I have chosen a perfect one, but it’s very expensive. It would be so great, Santa!

And also, Santa, please tell my downstairs neighbour to stop playing the drums. I know he only does it occasionally and it’s kinda festive, but it is annoying, anyway. Maybe you don’t have to bring him any presents this year?

I think that’s all. I hope this is not too difficult for you, dear Santa. If I think of more things, I will write you another letter.

Thank you very much and Merry Christmas! Hyvää Joulua!



P.S. I just remembered, Santa, many of my girlfriends are having babies and seem to be having fun! I don’t think I will become a mummy any time soon, but I’d love to be a godmother to a sweet little child. Could you ask one of my girlies to think of me when they are planning the baptism? Thank you so much, Santa, you’re the best!



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My name is Anna and welcome to my blog! I work full-time in London and spend most of my free time travelling the world and taking pictures, with the aim to see as many of the world's less visited places as possible. My favourite parts of the world include Afghanistan, Chile, Falkland Islands, Greece, Myanmar and the Kurdistan Region of Iraq. Take a look at my stories and photos!


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