This is kind of an introduction to Swedish Lapland. Starting out softly with kokkaffe, cinnamon buns and a tour of a wilderness exhibition – and ending up in a hole in the ice in the middle of nowhere.
The kåsa, wooden mug, is handmade. They’re all one of a kind and Catrin takes her time to choose hers. Finally, she picks up one with inserts of reindeer bone and finicky engravery. She holds out the kåsa and Thorbjörn fills it up with kokkaffe, boiled coffee typical for the region. And hands her a cinnamon bun.
– It’s freshly baked, he ensures us and throws another log on the open fire.
Catrin is from Germany. Southern Germany, to be precise. From Cologne. She’s part of a group with tens of Germans that have never been this far north. We’re in the forest surrounding Svansele, usually referred to as Europe’s last wilderness.