Day 873: America?

Here is another creative piece written by me. This time it is one of those exercises we do in Wednesday’s classes. Written on day 873, November 28. We were discussing the American tradition of storytelling. Then, the teacher put on some jazz music and we had to write whatever we wanted. America, America. A tough topic for me, I know so little about it. Sometimes this can even work for my advantage, create new opportunities. This is what happened. Note that this is an edited version, I edit automatically when typing stories in from my notebook. The raw version shall remain on paper only.

I am an Estonian who has never been to America. A European from the European Union, I think in Euros. I have ticked almost all countries in Europe. Even Kosovo. But not America. I usually change the channel when Hollywood tries to invade.

I have escaped the dreary November more than once. To Asia. I could tell stories about almost getting killed in Kuala Lumpur, fighting off blood-sucking leeches in the jungle, or how cat rescue works in Bali. But nothing about America.

Australia is where most young people from Estonia go. To burn their tender Northern European skin. To prove how hard-working nation we are so they could later spend all the money on more travelling. Maybe, they are trying to find love. ‘Work hard and love will follow,’ Tammsaare wrote. Most people read summaries of his five-volume Truth and Justice, they don’t know that the quote ends with ‘…but love has not yet reached Vargamäe.’

I have been to Africa but only if a one-week all-inclusive holiday in a random hotel counts. It wasn’t even the ‘real’ Africa, just Sharm-el-Sheikh, off the black continent. Nowadays, Estonian runners frequent Kenya, training for the Olympics and such. Estonia has its own Kenyan, Mukunga, who comes here every summer to win the races. How many of his family back in Kenya have a TV at home, won in a local village run in Estonia? How many chainsaws, lawn mowers, paintings has he sent home already?

I know, that of the icy continents, the Arctic is closer to us than Antarctica. If the glaciers melt, the polar bears will float to us on ice banks. The penguins are on the other side of the equator.

There was a time when young Estonians went to America to sell books. One of them, now a wealthy man and investor, wrote a book about how to become rich. There was a reasonably good film about the adventures of Estonian book salesmen. Not the usual kind of pretentiously artistic stuff that Estonians love to make. This one actually had a plot.

I am an Estonian who has never been to America. Not North, not South. Should be ashamed. There’s only one million of us but even Hemingway, an American, noticed our existence and coined the famous quote, stating that there is at least two Estonians in any port in the world. Why can’t I spot such a huge nation like Americans then, pay them a visit?

I am an Estonian who has never been to America. My grandmother lives in Canada. Luckily, I am now old enough for her not to send me any more over-sized T-shirts or ugly dresses. She has been here, she has seen that we now have decent shops too. Now she sends me photos of her having sitting by the pool either in Hawaii or Florida.

Progress Report

1. Own and live in a house.

Sorry, didn’t work. Did think that I really need to start designing my e-book if I want to make it into a money making machine. The first step is finishing it!

2. Write AND publish a book.

All well. See above. Had a fruitful workshop. They loved the piece I submitted before the class and listened to me in awe (despite my accent) when I read my American story out loud.

3. Win a major race.

Still not perfectly healthy. Decided not to do the hard workout and simply jogged. This turned out to be hard too. When will I recover? I am tired of this.

Photo of the Day

20181128_210834

Not a proper selfie. A reflection of me on the train window. On my way home from Cardiff. I am always so satisfied when I do make it to the train. 35 minutes, 5 km – does require some running. Ran for 2 km, then got one of the Nextbikes and cycled down to the station. Only to find out that my train was late! Well, at least I was there already.

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