Middle Final, Oinasvaari
This went better. Again started last.
Hesitated at the small stone just before the bigger stone at 1. A bit far from the line to 2, maybe 20s lost because of that. 3, 4 good, 5 less good, but still maybe 15s only.
6 good, need to think how to do it faster though.
7, lost a minute, tough control, but should have known I was staying way too high. Being high and dropping to the control was the plan, but I should have started dropping earlier. As Fabian said, from the boulder to the control were almost three full contours.
9, slight weaving early on
11, 12 good
13, hesitated in the circle, 10s
14, 15 fine, but should have been busting a gut.
Rollier ran around 26. In the morning Fabian was fastest, 23 and change.
Afterwards, sauntered over to see the hut where the Russian spy used to hang out (Black X near 2 and 8 on this
. The rooftop is level with the ground and it has the ends of the cliff-passage for two of its walls. He used to hang out, do sabotage in the area and generally be nasty during the second world war.
Then it was time to see the end of the ice-hockey, Finland vs Sweden (semi-finals of the world champs, so I guess at least two other countries must have teams), so back to Uimaharju and to the bar. I wasn't expecting this, so was wearing my swankiest HS training jacket. Some drunk lady started saying stuff at me when we went in, no idea what. Hannu replied to some questions then, "Metsästä", from the woods.
Time to order, didn't want alcohol, or coffee, or fizzy stuff... so, hot chocolate, since it was listed. H had to clarify to the barman that I didn't want two hot shots, but rather kakao. Another drunk was talking at us by this stage, H explained that I was foreign and didn't understand. Now this man knew I was foreign, and knew I was an orienteer. The penny dropped and the connection was made. I was French. And I was Thierry. Never rmind that I was Irish, as we explained repeatedly. So drunk paid for our round. And the barman told us the makkara outside were free, so we went out for a sausage.
Sitting in the back of the bar, we could sort of see the screen, but there was a darts tournament going on with all sorts of haircuts, some of them in the way. Finland was losing and no-one seemed to be paying attention. Drunk guy and an old man, I think his father, sat down opposite us.
Life is so easy these days was the general theme of the conversation. It was tough back in the talvisota, the winter war. Temperatures hit -42, the Russians came like flies, the Finnish soldiers were taking over people's houses, they blocked some roads and Russians froze to death. Father seemed a bit upset. He was born in a PoW camp in Russia and only came to Finland as a pieni pojka. By this stage, drunk and father both had tears running down their faces.
Father went to bathroom after saying such topics were gloomy. Neither drunk nor father spoke a word of English, but H was doing an epic job translating. They would say, explain to me that such and such. Father worked in Sweden for a few years but claimed not to speak Swedish either. He worked for Volvo near Göteborg in a plant full of Finns, maybe 300 working there.
Drunk offers another round, I decline, H maybe does too, or maybe asks for another coke, not sure. Anyway, a few minutes later he returns we three glasses of orange. I ask if there's vodka in it. Oh yes. Sorry, I'm driving and pass my glass to drunk. H nurses his glass without drinking, maybe that is the Finnish way.
Drunk says something to H, so H says to me, smiling as always, "He still thinks you're Thierry, and wants to know how you are better than all the Finns at orienteering, how you know Finnish forests so well." I am speechless, and barely manage to say that H is "tosi hyvin", whether or not that is grammatically correct. Then drunk says that he doesn't understand how I know Swedish forests, and wants to know how I did so well at Tiomila, H still preceding the translation with, okay, so he still thinks you're Thierry.
The match ends, we get up to leave, and I get my seventy-third handshake from drunk, and a firm handshake and almost a hug from father.
Happy now? :)