Monday, August 22, 2011

We are now officially residents of Helsinki. It's about 11 a.m. here, and I've been awake since I left Chicago at 6:30 am yesterday. Because I'm a genius, I booked us seats right by the bathrooms in the middle of the plane where the lights are always on. This, plus the constant parade of knee-jostling and fart smells made it impossible to snooze or to enjoy my private screening of Thor, although that may not have been possible anyway. Paul and Miller's Crossing were much more diverting and I hardly even noticed when the fat lady stepped on my foot.

When we were in Chicago two nights ago we got to have dinner with the person who we are subletting our Helsinki apartment from, which was really cool. She's an English philology student studying abroad in the USA this semester, which means her vocabulary is probably better than mine and anyone else who is reading this blog. She also gave us some great tips about Finland, one of which was unintentional. If all Finnish candy tastes as terrible as the kind she gave us, I'm going to have a hard time understanding this country. The best I can describe the taste is that it was like eating a tablespoon of salt with a raisin in the middle. Pauliina, if you're reading this, it was a joy to meet you but if you want to make friends in America I'd be careful who you give that candy to.

I feel like writing more but I also feel like if I don't get some sleep that I may lose my grip on reality. I can picture myself hallucinating that I'm back on the plane, dodging elbows and watching terrible movies like some vision of a Sisyphean hell right out of Camus, or Bill and Ted's Bogus Journey.


  1. That is the most perfect description of salmiakki I've ever run across. Salmiakki is much tastier in the form of the alcohol drink, even though the sludgy appearance is still mildly offputting.
    Welcome to Hell-sinki, guys!

  2. But remember what Camus wrote at the end of his essay on the Myth of Sisyphus: "La lutte elle-même vers les sommets suffit à remplir un cœur d'homme; il faut imaginer Sisyphe heureux." (The fight itself towards the summits suffices to fill a heart of man; it is necessary to imagine Sisyphus happy.) was not such a bad flight after all?