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The cartoon character I look up to

This is Snufkin.

He’s one of the characters from Tove Jansson’s amazing cartoon, The Moomins. The Moomins is set in fictional Moomin Valley where he and the Moomin family and their friends live.

These are a few of the reasons I like him, wish I was more like him and am similar to him, for better or worse:

• Snufkin chases the sun. Every year, he leaves for the winter and comes back for the spring.

• He is stoic. His natural state is balanced, in control and he’s rarely controlled by his emotions.

• He speaks calmly and in control, no matter the situation. Where others panic, he’s the voice of reason.

• If he’s standing on a cliff looking out over the ocean, he tells whoever he’s with to just stop and watch. Just stop and watch something you can’t control at all and enjoy it.

• He doesn’t believe in keeping possessions for sentimental reasons. He says the memory of that thing (that’s meaningful to you) is just as valuable as the actual physical item.

• He loves being on his own as much as he does being in the company of others. He is social, but he reframes the word ‘lonely’ as a good thing (sometimes though he gets impatient with them when they want to sit with him and he just wants to be on his own).

• He knows himself and is content with life, and the way he lives it.

I have a mini Snufkin character attached to my bag, which reflects light (apparently it’s so dark in Finland, everyone has one), and I don’t often think ‘What would Snufkin do?’ but when I look at it, sometimes I do. There are a lot of good things that Tove Jansson and the Moomins can teach us.

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