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Vieraskieliset / In-english

Blog: Half a cen­tu­ry ago

Vieraskieliset / In-english
20.2.2021 7.00

Juttua muokattu:

19.2. 10:00

Half a cen­tu­ry ago I par­ked my car in the cen­ter of Sot­ka­mo and wal­ked ac­ross a squ­a­re of grass, blu­e­bel­ls and clo­vers sur­roun­ded by tall pi­nes. I had been ap­poin­ted ju­ni­or te­ac­her in Sot­ka­mo mid­d­le school and high school, and I was on my way to meet the prin­ci­pal – the Prin­ci­pal with a ca­pi­tal P.

I have of­ten won­de­red at the mi­ra­cu­lous com­pa­ti­bi­li­ty of sche­du­les in life. Way back in the win­ter I had pro­mi­sed to give a ride to a friend who was due to in­ter­view a well-known Fin­nish wri­ter in Sot­ka­mo. At the time I made that pro­mi­se, I had no idea of my own fu­tu­re. But it tur­ned out my mee­ting at my new workp­la­ce was to take place at the same time as my friend’s in­ter­view.

I wal­ked up the steps of the school, wal­ked along the qui­et cor­ri­dor, and knoc­ked on the door of the prin­ci­pal’s of­fi­ce. The chair­man of the school bo­ard was sit­ting in a big armc­hair. I gree­ted all those pre­sent in the room and told them my name. The prin­ci­pal, a small, grim-fa­ced lady stood up from the chair be­hind her desk. She sur­vey­ed me from head to toe a coup­le of ti­mes and as­ked:

– Well, what grade are you co­ming to?

I re­pe­a­ted my name and said we had ag­reed about a mee­ting.

– Oh, yes, that’s right. I thought you were a new stu­dent.

We then be­gan to dis­cuss school mat­ters. Af­ter­wards, the prin­ci­pal of­ten re­mi­nis­ced about the mis­ta­ke she had made, ta­king the new te­ac­her for a stu­dent.

For the first few ye­ars of my te­ac­hing ca­reer, I was not much ol­der than my high school stu­dents. Some had star­ted mid­d­le school la­ter than ave­ra­ge, some ot­hers had re­pe­a­ted a grade.

That was how I star­ted my li­fe­long ca­reer as a te­ac­her. I on­ly left te­ac­hing to re­ti­re on old-age pen­si­on. It was in­te­res­ting and ex­ci­ting work – and I was ins­pi­red to te­ach.

For the first two ye­ars I li­ved in a small at­tic room a stone’s throw away from the school. I was af­raid of dogs, and I re­mem­ber of­ten watc­hing groups of vil­la­ge dogs ro­a­ming past my win­dow.

My ye­ars as a te­ac­her co­ver a good stretch of the his­to­ry of the Fin­nish school sys­tem. A few ye­ars af­ter I star­ted, Fin­land adop­ted the cur­rent comp­re­hen­si­ve school sys­tem that gu­a­ran­tees free and equ­al ba­sic edu­ca­ti­on to all child­ren. Cur­ri­cu­lar chan­ges were wor­ked out many ti­mes du­ring my te­nu­re. The prac­ti­ces and ac­ti­vi­ties of schools went through a num­ber of up­he­a­vals and al­te­ra­ti­ons.

The blu­e­bel­ls and clo­vers in front of the school di­sap­pe­a­red a long time ago, and on­ly a few of the old pi­nes still stand. The school buil­ding has been ex­ten­ded. A new of­fi­ce buil­ding with a lar­ge, pa­ved par­king area was built some time ago.

I had a rich life and a lot of dif­fe­rent ex­pe­rien­ces while li­ving in Sot­ka­mo. I fol­lo­wed the life cour­se of many pe­op­le from near or far and even par­ti­ci­pa­ted in some pe­op­le’s li­ves. I re­mem­ber some more cle­ar­ly than ot­hers, I do not know why.

It is al­wa­ys a joy to meet unex­pec­ted­ly so­me­o­ne that I have not seen for a long time. When they come up to greet me, I feel my work has been me­a­ning­ful.

What has hap­pe­ned to me du­ring these de­ca­des? I cer­tain­ly do not look like a school­girl any more. I have gone through many gra­des in the school of life. I have col­lec­ted a good num­ber of won­der­ful me­mo­ries, alt­hough not all groups have been ea­sy. God has gui­ded my work.

I am sit­ting in my roc­king chair knit­ting a car­di­gan, which is a good thing to knit on a rai­ny day. When I mo­ved to Sot­ka­mo, I had a simp­le bunk bed, a small desk and a red spind­le-back chair. The white roc­king chair that I am sit­ting in was the first pie­ce of fur­ni­tu­re that I bought with my pa­yc­heck.

Wind is chur­ning up le­a­den wa­ter,

he­a­vy rain drops boun­cing off the sur­fa­ce.

This wa­ter has many sha­des of co­lor,

the clear blue of a sun­ny sum­mer mor­ning,

the glow of purp­le clouds,

the gol­den ref­lec­ti­ons of au­tumn.

Like life.

Text: Ai­li Pa­sa­nen

Trans­la­ti­on: Sirk­ka-Lii­sa Lei­no­nen


Sinä tah­dot si­sim­pää­ni to­tuu­den – il­moi­ta siis mi­nul­le vii­sau­te­si! Ps. 51:8

Viikon kysymys


Ta­pah­tu­koon si­nun tah­to­si

Vuo­den 2021 ajan­koh­tais­kir­ja kä­sit­te­lee ai­hei­ta ku­ten us­kon­non­va­paut­ta ja kris­ti­tyn vas­tuu­ta sekä pan­de­mi­an ai­heut­ta­mia muu­tok­sia ar­jes­sam­me ja yh­teis­kun­nas­sa. Sa­mal­la se ker­too luot­ta­muk­ses­ta muut­tu­mat­to­miin Ju­ma­lan sa­nan lu­pauk­siin ja hä­nen hy­vän tah­ton­sa to­teu­tu­mi­seen.


Per­hee­näi­din sel­viy­ty­mis­ta­ri­na avaa nä­ky­män suo­ma­lai­sen yh­teis­kun­nan ke­hit­ty­mi­seen jäl­leen­ra­ken­nuk­sen ajal­ta 1960-lu­vun hy­vin­voin­tiin. Sa­mal­la se on pu­heen­vuo­ro kris­til­lis­ten ar­vo­jen puo­les­ta.

Käsi en­ke­lin kä­des­sä

Rai­kas ja ajan­koh­tai­nen nuor­ten­kir­ja kä­sit­te­lee so­me­riip­pu­vuut­ta, ys­tä­vien mer­ki­tys­tä ja us­ko­ne­lä­män hoi­ta­mis­ta.

Ihas­tut­ta­va eläin­maa­il­ma

Tie­sit­kö, et­tä su­den­ko­ren­not ovat eläin­maa­il­man tai­ta­vim­pia len­tä­jiä ja saa­lis­ta­jia tai et­tä lap­set kuu­le­vat hei­nä­sir­kan soi­ton pa­rem­min kuin ai­kui­set?

Lap­si olen pie­ni

Tämä levy vie si­nut löy­tö­ret­kel­le las­ten Sii­o­nin lau­lu­jen pa­riin pien­ten soo­lo­lau­la­jien ja vä­hän isom­pien kuo­ro­lau­la­jien mu­ka­na. Kuun­te­le, kuin­ka kos­ket­ta­vas­ti, raik­kaas­ti ja mie­leen­pai­nu­vas­ti nuo­ri väki lau­laa näi­tä kris­til­li­syy­del­le ar­vok­kai­ta lau­lu­ja.