Katerina (27) is a wilderness person. She grew up in Mustvee, Estonia – a forested small town on the shore of Lake Peipus. In her adult life, she has always chosen scenic places as her travel destinations, for instance when working in Iceland and England.

3.5 years ago, she had to choose between seasonal work in Lapland’s Kakslauttanen, or in Italy. She chose Lapland.

-All my life, I’ve kind of felt like Indiana Jones. New working places far far away are always an adventure. When I came here, I was absolutely certain I would find my place in Lapland – and that actually happened. It didn’t take long for me to get a permanent position in Hotel Kultahovi in Inari. I’ve worked there for 1.5 years, Katerina says.

Apparently, Katerina  family has always been drawn to the north, as her Estonian father and Latvian mother met in Murmansk. Both of them once decided to come north, coincidentally at the same time.

Katerina really likes her job, although every high season causes a big rush and brings in numerous people. You have to be quick and flexible in order to manage. The busy season means long shifts, but that also entails a higher salary.

-It’s a lot of fun to work when you’re a part of a great team. Workdays just fly by, Katerina rejoices.

Right after moving in Lapland, she first struggled to find new friends, because many local people don’t speak English. Thus, she soon started to study Finnish. Now it is easier to make contacts.

For such a real-life Indiana Jones, what would be the best thing in Lapland?

-Why, sautéed reindeer and fur boots of course! And chaga mushrooms that grow on every other tree, she proceeds with laughter.

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