A steep trek uphill past a collection of colorful apartment buildings brings you to a small, nondescript red building. Little signage tells you what happens behind the white door that leads you into Kalaallisuuliornermik Ilinniarfik, the only school for traditional sewing in the Inuit world.
While Hans has been working in Greenland for five years, Alice and I are new here. Even more, this is my first time working in any Arctic context. As such, the learning curve is steep. Over the course of two weeks, I have been surrounded by incredible science and research, of which I am only in my infancy of understanding. Between the events of Greenland Science Week and talking to Greenlanders involved in many areas of science history, and culture, I am discovering there is so much to learn.
Yesterday was a rather special day. We had the opportunity to see a part of Greenland that not many visitors have been to yet. Sarfannguit is a town accessible only by boat ride through a choppy fjord cutting inland from Sisimiut. As a part of Greenland Science Week, we joined a small group of other professionals to share projects about Greenlandic heritage with the citizens of Sarfannguit.
It rained yesterday and its raining again today. Greenlanders keep telling me this is abnormal. Usually by now, Sisimiut and many other Greenlandic cities would see only snow for precipitation. But instead, a cold rain has descended. It's covering the small amount of snow sitting on the ground and turning it to ice. Still, like Nuuk, even drizzle cannot mask the colorful beauty of this place.
I am an anthropology professor, writer, researcher and global traveler. In fall of 2021, I led an experiential eLearning project connecting US students (and others) with the people, places, and industries of Greenland. I redesigned a research trip into a virtual field trip for my students who didn't have any Study Abroad options. All of the videos, photos, interviews, and storytelling are still here to enjoy!