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Things I left behind in Finland and Sweden, a partial list - Barnstorming on an Invisible Segway [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Marissa Lingen

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Things I left behind in Finland and Sweden, a partial list [May. 25th, 2016|10:59 am]
Marissa Lingen

A terrible fantasy novel I didn’t care about. The $2 I would have gotten from it at Half Price was not worth hauling it around for three weeks once I realized on day two that I wasn’t going to read more than 50 pages.

Five worn-out pairs of underwear and two worn-out bras. This was by design. Going to get thrown out somewhere. Good-bye, skivvies! Good-bye!

The Finnish phrasebook that contained “Can I get this in gabardine?” but not “service required” or “oil change” or…really, gabardine? Gabardine? Also, the dating section: if all I can say is, “can I get this in gabardine?”, I feel that “dating” is perhaps a euphemism, and going ahead and labeling it the “picking up strangers for sex” section is better. There were not any phrases in this section like, “What do you do?” or “What are your hobbies?” with a list of common answers. Kids, we have words for this, and they are not “dating.”

My black ankle boots, with two new rips in the leather. Well done, boots! Your service was appreciated!

Three pairs of tights. Unlike the boots and skivvies, these were not planned. They were eaten by the boots in their ravenous last days.

The Finnish guidebook that blandly mentioned that Helsinki might have modern art museums but not what or where, and claimed that there was a market where there was no market. I found the market. Helsinki was great. The guidebook not so much.

My purse. Um. This one was even less planned than the tights. It became leprous and started losing chunks of leather. Purse! Don’t do that, purse! I had to buy a purse in a Stockholm boutique on an emergency basis.

My fear that vertigo means no overseas travel. Vertigo means carefully managed international travel. Timed around the meds, planned very precisely around certain parameters. Do I know a year in advance whether a particular trip will be possible? No. But will some kinds of trips be possible? I think so. Yes.

Any sense that I might go the rest of my life without returning to the Arctic. Oh. Oh, you guys. The light, the air. The rivers. The rivers. I was barely out of Rovaniemi before I started researching Tromsø, Kiruna, Hammerfest, more. More. More. I’m going back. It can’t be soon, but–I have to go back.

There may also be a single perfectly good purple sock missing. Laundry progresses and hope recedes.

More as I can, as logistics allow.

Originally published at Novel Gazing Redux


From: athenais
2016-05-25 04:37 pm (UTC)
Wonderful! I am so pleased your trip went well (except for the clothing that fell apart) and that it's doable to make more trips.

I have been trying to get to Arctic Norway for three years. Tromsø and the Lofoten Islands are top of that list.
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[User Picture]From: mrissa
2016-05-25 04:53 pm (UTC)
Well, tights are not eternal, so it's no big deal really.
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From: athenais
2016-05-25 05:24 pm (UTC)
On one hand, lighter suitcases are good. But you probably made up the missing mass with Fazer products.
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[User Picture]From: mrissa
2016-05-25 05:42 pm (UTC)
I actually only came home with three items for myself and two gifts, from the Fazer store! I consider this highly restrained.

Possibly overly restrained.
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[User Picture]From: mrissa
2016-05-25 04:55 pm (UTC)
I mean, it's not like I wanted to date anybody in Finland. It was just a sign of how useless this phrasebook was, though.
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[User Picture]From: sartorias
2016-05-25 06:12 pm (UTC)
I am so glad that this is working for you. And if you, from the land of wondrous rivers, are impressed by these, wow. Must see!
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[User Picture]From: mrissa
2016-05-25 06:36 pm (UTC)
Yah, it takes a bit for someone from the banks of the Mississippi to say that a river counts for something. The Kemijoki and the Ounasjoki deliver. And a great many of the far northern Swedish rivers are nothing to sneeze at either.

I didn't really have an emotional understanding of why so many of the Saami tribe names translate to x river Saami, until I was there. And then it was obvious, it was like why the people here are the x lake band of different Native groups. Because. Well.
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[User Picture]From: sartorias
2016-05-25 07:07 pm (UTC)
or x bands from Mountain. Oh. yes.
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[User Picture]From: wshaffer
2016-05-25 09:54 pm (UTC)
I should get the name of the guidebook and the phrasebook from you so that I don't pick them up for the trip that I hope to take to Finland next year. (Actually, when that gets closer to the planning phase, I will probably have questions for you on things to see/do in Helsinki.)

I am so so happy for you that you can manage international travel even with the vertigo.
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[User Picture]From: mkille
2016-05-26 02:13 am (UTC)
I always get Tromsø confused with Trondheim. And I want to say, it's lovely you should totally go there! And then I remember. I'm sure Tromsø is lovely, and you *should* totally go there. But still.
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[User Picture]From: dichroic
2016-05-26 06:43 pm (UTC)
Hey, I've been to Kiruna! It's where you fly into for the Ice Hotel.

Glad your trip was wonderful.
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