It is hot here in Kuopio. Lakes surround the entire city. If one feels real sultry, one can jump in a clear, refreshing lake. Unlike the sea, which has it’s own allure, the pure saltless blue of the lakes makes you feel purified. People here and there punctuate the pristine beauty of pine trees and blue waters. A few girls stroll along the lakeside path paying no attention to what else. A dad sits on steps with his two bright eyed toddlers who smear ice cream over each other’s faces. A group of guys stand at one spot talking for 30 minutes, then move to a new spot 50 meters away. Ladies on break strut quickly. The elderly inch their way. Bicycles whizz past. Drinkers sit around on the ground, derelict.
The problem with all this warm summer idleness is my packing arrangements. I have one rule in this matter: if there is more than I can carry on my own, it’s more than I need. It is time I send some gear back to the states.
The exciting thing about being rid of excess clothes is the newfound room for books. Today I found a used book store and purchased a very nice Suomi – Englanti dictionary and a Finnish Donald Duck (Aku Ankan) comic book. Colorful language, dialogue form, and short sentences, make this book a hit with me. Most of the stories include Scrooge, too! I drank coffee at a table in the shade and worked my way through the first 5 pages as the strollers, cyclists, loiterers went by.
At one point, two construction workers came over and almost made eye contact as they took chairs from my table so they could sit a bit aways and smoke. I made the “you’re good to take ’em” American hand-gesture with my pointer finger, but I doubt they saw it. They didn’t need permission anyway.
Although, I moved the table once to escape the blazing sun, it caught me again. That was my signal to wander elsewhere.