Timo Kinnunen
Särkiniementie 16 A 41
70700 Kuopio

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Baderman, Lönnrot, and the whole lousy gang


Next I am going to tell a story which is pretty similar than Finnish version of the same story concerning Baderman, Lönnrot, and others - but just that short that you get an idea of what I am telling about. I have written this in 2002, and published it ar Raketti server in Kuopio, Finland. Quite lately I found this file again from a data CD, and here we have it, again, almost in its original state. For now, in 2016, I have returned it to this collection, but I have tamperedt this just for better syntax. Of Course, there cannot be any "direct" translation of this kind of stories, but instead I can offer a taste of them. Therefore I have left some of those short stories which can be found in Finnish version just outside, because you cannot get their sense of humor, or their core idea very easily. But back to the business. Elias Lönnrot was a Finn who collected those old Finnish poems, who have become known better as Kalevala, and which - in turn - has certain references to American Hiawatha -collection. I am not going to debate what was first, or last, but there are certain similarities between them. During the past recent years it was not polite in Finland to describe Lönnrot as an ordinary man, with some weaknesses, but instead those high society people were waiting some appreciation in regard to Lönnrot , and were demanding us to treat him - among some other men of honor - as a national hero. Nowadays there are some writings where they are emphasizing his wretched features, too, as an example his strong misuse of alcohol - but let us take to the consideration that during his lifetime it was a general way of life, or custom of most men to drink much of alcohol, or homemade spiritus fortus. Actually Lönnrot was the one of the first me who were introducing an idea of moderateness in drinking, but it was not any kind an absoluteness, yet.

In Finland it was not at all polite to describe the welfare of those national heroes during some years ago, and show to ordinary people how comfortably they actually lived, and how much they earned money when compared to most of folk of Finland in those days. This was the same tendency which we can see taken place during 70's, when all the rich people tried to hide their money, as well as their properties. But now they are just coming out from their lousy hiding places to show to folk their true place at new, true hierarchy of Finnish society, and those rich people are trying to force folk to their knees, again. But this is an another story, indeed. During Lönnrotian times most Finnish people lived in little cabins -as they live now in their tiny flats - and only few of them were able to build, and maintain the house which you can see below:

There you can see Lönnrot 's house in Kajaani town, which lies in Eastern Finland, which house he built in the year 1850, and he got all timber from Hauhola , which he owned, too, and where he was a summer cottage. Quite near Kajaani he owned also a farm Polvila , and later he bought also two farms in Sammatti, which lies in Southern Finland - namely Lammi and Niku . Therefore, we cannot call him a poor man at all, or describe him a tramp, or a kind of Woody Cuthrie of ancient times. In the literature we can find such descriptions where they emphasize that he was a modest man, who did not want to get any property, and that he had that kind of goods very much. We get very easily an idea of a man, who just traveled all over the country, and just collected poems, and asked not for money of that. There are lot of anecdotes where they described how modest person Lönnrot was. At one of the most commonest stories it was told how a simple coachman regarded him as an ordinary man, and told him to walk forward, and how that coachman regarded Lönnrot as relatively stupid person - but later it was revealed also to the folks that he was an intellectual man of all honor, and respect. Now we can laugh, and laugh over again, and remember how sweet stories those were, and how modest men those noblest persons of this country were, and so on. But we do not study Lönnrot 's properties, or his riches any longer during the current story, because we consider Lönnrot mainly as an imaginary person, who just did some things, and left some other things undone. Let's imagine a big red rooster who is just picking one seed, and leaving some other seeds to hens just behind him. But we have there also another person present, namely Elmau Baderman , who was a real, German student in architecture, and who visited in Finland when I was a young man, and therefore it took place a long time ago. But we consider him as an imaginary person, too, and especially during this current story. If you have never heard about Elmau Baderman before, he was just that "very old" man, who arrived to an excursion to Finland, and slept mostly in barns. My own parents picked him to their auto when they saw his standing there, and thumbing a ride. Then I saw him myself, too, just as alive as you, and me. Everyone must know that sweet story where it was told:

"When Elmau Baderman arrived to Finland at his first time, he didn't know but two Finnish words, namely to sleep (nukkua), and a barn (lato)"

You MUSTknow him, or you MUSThave heard about him, because this sweet story has been told over and over again in thos little cabins in Finland, and also elsewhere. Now I have told it also via Internet. Some of you might have heard about Alwar Alto , who was a famous Finnish architect, and he was the man whose works Elmau arrived to see at his own eyes, and whose style he tried to copy to his mind, too. There is an almost forgotten library in Wyborg, which is a work of Aalto , and which has been left almost untouched, and there we can find a touch (and also a smell) of an old time, and history, because Russians has left the house in question almost untouched, and have not done any special restaurations, or such things. Everyone knows how destructive a man can be, when trying to prepare a house -if he is a kind of "self-made-man". Everyone should be acquainted with that sweet, old story, in which it was told:

"When Elmau Baderman left Germany to go to Finland, he just picked up his "Matraze", and went to see the brilliant works by Alwar Aalto, according hints which he got from his professor "

But back to Lönnrot , again.

The adventures of Lönnrot

Hunter-Elias - and how he lost his sweet hobby

Elias Lönnrot was an enthusiast hunter (not Tab Hunter, head-hunter, or man-hunter, but just a hunter), and he was all the time cleaning his dear guns with his brand new gun stick, and he has that kind ot activity during most of his free time, indeed. Once upon a time he went out to hunt something, but did not get anything. He repeated his enterprises several times, but there was the same result over and over again. Just nothing, and less of that. At last he did not want to hunt any more, and he forgot also his dear guns, and stopped their cleaning, too.

How Elias got his aversion of Finnish sauna

Most of Siberian tribes has known Sauna for centuries, or more, and so did also Finnish people. Sauna is a place where you can see an oven, and some rocks on it. Most Finns heat those rocks first by keeping fire in that oven, and then they cast some water on them, when they are heated enough - and then steam spread very fast to each corner of Sauna , and folks there are just puffing and blowing, and seem to enjoy somehow of all that. Some of those Siberian tribes had a special version of Sauna , because they climbed to oven inside to take bath, and taking there some heat, too, just spilling some water around them, when sitting comfortably right there. But in Finland it was a separate building, and a holy place, too, and everyone MUST go there - whether they are foreigner or not, or whether they have never seen that kind of place or not.

It it no wonder that Elias Lönnrot was also a friend of Sauna , and tried to bath there whenever it was possible. Once he went to a Sauna in Helsinki City, and there was also a drain, and waste grating, which was not common during those days, yet. In fact, Elias wanted to bath in Sauna since little boy, and especially in that Helsinki Sauna , and also there he enjoyed much when sitting in there,and started that necessary puffing and blowing. Because he was quite alone in that commercial Sauna , and there were no other customers left, he shouted trough the door to personnel of Sauna , that they were free to leave home if they wished to do that. Unfortunately the door of Sauna just stick in the lock, and Elias was unable to get out any more. Temperature was just rising up, because he had asked personnel to rise it before they left Sauna , and Elias felt himself very uncomfortable, because there was a temperature of 100 C -at least, and then much more than that. Therefore he must go down lying to the waste grating of a drain, and keep lying there until it was new morning, and a new day, again. No wonder, that Elias never went to Sauna again, when being released out there.

Elias - The Joggler of all the jogglers of Finland

As we know, German king Heinrich I (also known by the English name Henry the Fowler ) got his nickname due of that he was hunting birds when he got a message to becoming a king. Quite similarly got Lönnrot his name Elias the Joggler , because he was just joggling around when they began to call him by that name, and got all the information of those old poems just being joggling. But Elias was an enthusiast joggler also when he was day off, and most of time he could hide his fever, because he was collecting those poems, but as an older man he was not able to make long journeys any more, and therefore people could see his joggling around -sickness quite clearly. But there is another evidence of that. An example of that more general evidence is a "cartoon", where Finnish A.V. Linsén has described how Elias is just joggling through Finland. I think that this picture could be a logo of all the jogglers all over the world, too:

But this was not the end of story, yet. Soon after Elias has got published Kalevala , he began to joggle almost all of his walking time, and he began to be more and more shy, and spent most of his time in deep forests. The men of law tried to captive him some times, and they got a succeed at last, when they forced Elias to an open place, from where he was easily captured. But Elias Escaped over and over again, and therefore they left him to live in forests, and did not to try to put him into a jail any more.