November 2012 Newsletter on the Kalmyk project

The Kalmyks are famous for their Kalmyk tea, a very special drink with cream, salt and spices, but no sugar. You drink a cup of this tea for breakfast and you do not have to eat any food till lunch time. They boast of their keen eyesight and good teeth thanks to this sugarless diet. The Kalmyks are the only Buddhist people in the whole of Europe, so they should be, and actually are, contemplative in comparison to other Europeans. They have deservedly earned their reputation as calm and peaceful people, who are never in a hurry. They have also earned their reputation as an intellectual nation because they have adopted chess as their national game and it is being taught even to little children from the first years of schooling...

The Kalmyks number about 200,000. They live in the Republic of Kalmykia in southern Russia. The Kalmyk language belongs to the Mongolian language family. The Kalmyks are Buddhists.