Yesterday morning, I was meeting with this beautiful Sami girl, Kine Anita Henriksen in her reindeer farm for the discussion about the future business plan. She has her Gakti, the traditional Sami outfits on her. The Gakti is characterized by a dominant color adorned with bands of contrasting colors, plaits, pewter embroidery, tin art, and often a high collar.
I had a great time with Kine’s family and their reindeer. Kine is an outdoor lover, she enjoys being in the nature, spending time with her reindeer and also sitting in the hut looking at the fire – she said the shapes of the fires look different every moment!
Sami are a group of indigenous people that come from the region of Sapmi, which stretches across the Northern Norway, Sweden, Finland and the Kola Peninsula in Russia. Sami are best known for reindeer herding, and Kine’s family has about 600 reindeer and has been herding reindeer for many generations. Reindeer are so important to the Sami way of life, many people even go to a special university to learn how to care for their reindeer herds!
In the Sami culture, there are 8 seasons instead of 4. These 8 seasons are closely related to the reindeer’s natural migration and mating, and the reindeer owner’s tasks at the particular time of the year. Reindeer can migrate up to 600 kilometers each year along ancient migration routes between the seasons. A siida is a unique form of organization for the groups of Sami reindeer herders who practice reindeer husbandry together in specific areas.
If you happen to be in the Northern Norway, around Kongsvik or Evenes, and if you are interested to learn more about Sami culture and their reindeer, you can book a tour with Kine, check out her website for more information: https://www.varr-i.com/