At the ready
The cabins in East Greenland are left ready for the next Danish patrol to arrive at any moment. All of the gear and supplies are accessible with as little fuss as possible. Including the matchboxes. You don’t even have to open them! This struck me as a little bit obsessive. Is it really less work to pull the match out like this than to slide the box open?
Or maybe I’ve missed the point, and it’s simply a gesture that says something like “Hello my friends, we are thinking of you and looking out for you. Stay warm. Stay safe. Begin by lighting a match.”