Call of the Wild

School children have their autumn holiday this week, meaning that also I took a short break with my kids to visit my childhood home in the Kainuu region in eastern Finland.

Despite of living in Oulu region for the past 20 years, I am afraid I still haven’t fully learned to appreciate the coastal sceneries and vast expanses of cultivated land.  It is really the Kainuu landscape and wilderness that I like the best. Large forests defining the scenery; reflecting gold in the morning, green during the day, blue in the evening, silver in the moonlight. Woods so vast and dense you can easily imagine disappearing into one forever. Lakes big and small everywhere in the middle. Incredible richness of nature, that sustains those who know ’the ways of the forest’. The local people who still gather berries and mushroom, fish and hunt. The Kainuu dialect with its elongated words and rich expressions that leave room for interpretation.  Bears, lynx, wolves, wolverines; you hardly ever get to see them, but you can find their footprints made just moments before. Elks and forest reindeer walking on your backyard (well at least sometimes!). True call of the Wild.

Lakes and forests -something you find everywhere in the Kainuu region.
First people walked in these forests hundreds, if not thousands, years ago. You can still find signs of their presence -here is an old tomb close to the shoreline of lake Lentua.
Traditional baskets, made out of wood shingles, are used to collect berries and mushroom. All family members have their own basket -from the oldest to the youngest one!

Meanwhile I disappeared into forest, our WP4 leader Kirsi helped to take care of the ongoing TA call which seems to be more popular than ever. And with another week left of the call before the deadline on 31st October, there’s still some time for researchers to hear the Call of the Wild and submit an application for Transnational Access!

Until the next time!

-Hannele

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