- I’m booking a bus ticket to Melukylä for tomorrow. That way you can stay here with Herbert while I go back home and work for some time. I will then take the bus back here and we can continue the roadtrip. It saves me money too, because diesel is more expensive than the bus tickets.
- Thank you Ken… I have some unfinished business here… this is very important to me.
- So I figured. I don’t know when I’ll be back. Don’t drive around! I don’t want to see an empty gas tank when I return!
- I won’t! I’ll stay in Mämmilä. Herbert is in good hands!
Kaarna drops Ken off at the bus station and feels relieved and free. She needs some time alone and with the weather like this all week life is going to be perfect!
Five long hours on a
bus. Ken is not happy to go home and to work when the summer finally has
started. He would love to stay on the lake shores and countryside where
the heat feels gentle. But he doesn’t have a choice.
- I envy Kaarna’s freedom. Oh, I shouldn’t think that way… she suffers from her mental problems and poverty.
Ken notices soon that coming home isn’t actually that bad.
- No crowded grocery stores, no crowded beaches! No insane traffic on the streets! And look at the clear and cool water of Lake Saimaa! It’s always nice to visit Ruuhka-Suomi, but nothing beats Etelä-Karjala.
Ken’s days are busy. He’s working at the Post in the mornings, at home in the afternoons and...
Meanwhile in Mämmilä Kaarna enjoys the beach life. She swims many times every day in the brown and warm water of the lake Längelmävesi. But it’s hard to keep a peaceful mind.
She knows her steps here. Everything is the way it was before, nothing has changed. She feels at home. She still loves this town. Why did she leave? What led her first to a commune and then to Ken?
Ken is having his second breakfast at work, when the supervisor comes and says:
- Ken! I’m in trouble! Reijo-Heikki got sick and I don’t have enough carriers! I need to send you to Tattikumpu!
- I don’t know the route!!!
- I’ll draw you a map. Do you have our t-shirt?
- I’ll bring you one. And a helmet. It’s a bike route. Take your time finishing your meal, no hurry!
The supervisor gives Ken a heavy key chain and draws a messy map of the route from building to another.
- Here is a ”nippulaatikko”…
- A what?
- … and here and here and here are ”humiskas”…
- Humi… what?!
- There’s also a key to open the mailbox here. Empty it before your round. Don’t forget to scan the code inside.
- … oh boy…
She sits down in
front of her parents’ grave for a while. They both died when her father
suddenly had a stroke while driving a car. Kaarna feels that visiting
the grave is an obligation.
- We should have sprinkled your ashes in the lake. This stone is nothing but a reminder that I don’t come here often enough.
Ken puts the crown on the souvenir shelf. Such a fancy item! It was way too expensive but he doesn’t regret. He just has to work two hours at the Post to earn the money back.
- Hi Anna…
- Four years.
- You were in a mad house for four years?!
- No… I was only two weeks in a the hospital. Then I went to live in a commune that was supposed to be a safe place for people in crisis.
- … but it was a cult led by a fat pig.
- A pig?
- I’m super duper happy! I have an amazing girlfriend! She has two gorgeous kids and we are finally going to move in together next week!
- Oh… and do you still work at …
- Yes yes, the same place! Everything’s the same except that you’re not there and I got a promotion, I’m the head art director now!
- Oh… congratulations…
- I haven’t even thought about it in years… it doesn’t matter.
- Ok… but still I am sorry.
- Apology accepted.
- No… no more cults for me, but I’m not returning here either. My life is somewhere else now, Kaarna says.
There’s nothing else to talk about so she says goodbye and walks away.
- She seemed so happy. A good relationship… happy life, great career. Why can’t I be successful at least in something?! I ruin everything. What would my life be like now if I hadn’t gone nuts…? Art director my ass… Fuck, it’s just a small town advertising agency. Art director is a very big word for someone creating newspaper ads and pizza menus.