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BLOG: Samoylov 2015 – Life on the island

P1010026.smallSardakh. Picture: L.Viitanen, AWI.
Life on a remote island, even if it is only for a short time, is somewhat different from the life you live back home in your daily routines. The biggest differences are most likely the direct connection with the surrounding nature and the seemingly timeless way of living.

During the polar day the sun shines 24 hours a day making it possible to rhythm the life completely according to one’s own will. The restrictions posed by weather become more important than the ones posed by day and night and it is exactly this sense of freedom that attracts many in these remote places.

This freedom can though also turn against you, when the stay is restricted in time and the work during the winter depends on the samples and data one manages to gather during these short summer weeks. It is not unusual to see people out in the field still after midnight or analyzing their samples long after the usual bedtime.
To structure the life a bit here in the wild, there are few routines that will not be deviated from at any cost.
The most important routine is the banja that is heated every Saturday and Wednesday. Like Hanno put it, the banja divides the week to good and bad half, the bad half being the one where you have to wait for the next banja for three days instead of two, like during the good half.

Another important routine is the Sunday trip to one of the close by islands. Usually, there is no work done during these trips, though that happens also, giving people time to recharge their batteries over a relaxed walk and a lunch break out in the nature.

Sundays are also in other ways a bit more relaxed. Molo's morning brunch is at 10, instead of the regular 8 o'clock breakfast, allowing people the necessary morning rest after Saturdays banja. Dinner is served as usual at 7, but consists most often of something truly delicious, like reindeer or fresh fish from the river, that Molo prepares with great talent.
Last Sunday we made a trip to Sardakh, an island in one of the delta channels. The weather was perfect with a slight wind, keeping the mosquitos away while we had a good long walk on the beach and a lunch by the fire. Below some pictures from the trip.
smallRegina and Andrej sending us off to Sardakh. Picture: L. Viitanen, AWI Sasha and Misha on a Sunday tripSasha and Misha on a Sunday trip to Sardakh. Picture: L.Viitanen, AWI
 Josefine and Anna on SardakhJosefine and Anna on Sardakh. Picture: L. Viitanen, AWI some people got styleSome people got style. Picture: L.Viitanen, AWI.