3 August: Meeting Kolguyev
It is the third day of the expedition. The RV «Professor Molchanov» has got over 461 sea miles. All members of the expedition and even those who are in the expedition for the first time have got into the new operating conditions. Curious things have become ordinary. But we will certainly remember this day as a day of the landing on Kolguyev Island.
Ludmila Sevastyanova, the head of the department in the scientific NARFU library, like everybody else, couldn’t wait to visit Bugrino village situated on the island. To get to the island students and professors put on their life jackets and got into motor boats in groups of 9-11 people. The trip was as quick as the wind. Except mischievous slashes the weather and the sea were favorable.
Ludmila shared her impressions about the trip: it was so interesting, amazing and a little bit scary, because everything was moving around me.
Ludmila is developing possible routes for Arctic tourism. Her main task during the landing on Kolguyev Island was to define the level of tourist attraction of Bugrino village.
— I talked to Ivan, an employee of the hydrometeostation, and he said that tourists had never come to this place before. But as for me it is very interesting to make Bugrino one of the tourist destinations.
According to Ludmila this village actually has places to be seen, and it also can make us inspired with the life far from the mainland. The first object of her field research was the hydrometeostation having cultural-historic value. The worshiping cross also wasn’t passed over. But the particular attention was given to the slaughterhouse, the place for preparing reindeer meat.
— All the territory is covered with the blood, reindeer skins, skulls and bones. Curiously enough but it smells only outside the building, there is no disgusting smell in it — told Ludmila.
Because of the weekend all shops were closed and it was impossible to buy souvenirs. But Ludmila was lucky to send a letter to her parents.
— I wanted to get a «Kolguyev Island» stamp on it. I wrote down the date and «Everything is good». So I also asked them to keep it as a keepsake. I think that it is very unusual to drop a line from behind the polar circle.
The members of the expedition acquired a lot of information interviewing settlers. The woman that works at the meteostation told Ludmila about the household customs on the island.
— I saw how they lived. The conditions are very humble. The doors are everywhere, probably because it is cold. To get to the room you should pass a dozen of doors. A small kitchen is clean and furnished with care. The shower is as in a country house. Curtains are replaced with bedspreads and blankets possibly to protect against the polar day. It smells of soup.
We also had a talk about the necessity of living conditions improvement, about the absence of the infrastructure and so on. It helped to look upon the tourism development from the practical point of view not omitting cultural-historic side of this question.
Having arrived onboard almost everybody took a shower to fresh themselves after this surprisingly hot day on Kolguyev Island.
— Having revived we looked trough some photos taken during the landing in Bugrino. I am very tired. I can explain it by the lack of the physical activity onboard: there are no places for such walks on the vessel.
Everyday cultural events have become regular. Today everybody gathered to watch a film about Bugrino village that local people had given us. The expedition had a chance to see the village dozens of years ago and compare it with its current state.
Tomorrow the expedition is going to land on Vaygach Island and is looking forward to meeting polar bears.