Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Not something I see every day

Current events (like about ten minutes ago). Eye-witness report. Here as follows:

Here I was, studying for my exam, concentrating on the power politics of Sweden, Poland and Russia in the 17th century. In other words, minding my own business in the peace and quiet of my own bedroom.

Suddenly I hear someone bellowing "hey" outside and curious as I am, I immediately went to the window to see what was going on.

And what did I see? A police car parked in front of our house. Police officers directing traffic (including pedestrians), away from "my" street. That's odd, I thought. What on Earth for? Wuzzgoingon?

Answer came to me quite soon. They were closing down my neighbouring block and quite a stretch of street because the President of Russia, Vladimir Putin, was to drive by. And how did I know this? Well, he's in town today and I live basically next door to Turku's top biotech centre plus some University facilities that the President could be visiting. And as I quickly browsed through the news from the local newspaper's website afterwards, my guess was confirmed.

So here I was, peeking from my kitchen window, when the police escort drove by, promptly followed by a huge black limo with the Russian and Finnish state flags, quite a few other big Finnish and Russian black cars, a dozen or so less luxurious vehicles and a few more police cars. Wow. Not something I see every day. :) According to the local newspaper the president travels with an entourage of about 200 people, and I suppose most of those people just passed my apartment from less than 50 metres away. Waah.

They're still redirecting traffic in the crossroads - I wonder if the whole procession will come back the same way? Maybe I should go and ask the nice police officers? Although I doubt it they'd tell me anything.

Oo, what excitement. :)


Tytti said...

Oooh, the excitement. Brings back memories from good ol' 90's when I skipped classes the first and only time in my life at highschool and went to center of town (Oulu) to see the president of Russia at that time, Mr. Mikhail Gorbachev. I did catch a glimpse of his large black car and famous birthmark behind the windows :)

Anonymous said...

Well that's nothing! ; )

In 1988 when Reagan visited Helsinki, I was working at the Helsinki University Hospital in the OR. I was on duty on the same time when Reagan was in town and since our OR was the best in Finland, one of it's theatres was kept empty during the whole visit. In case Reagan would need it. And FBI guys came beforehand and took personal details from all of us staff working there. I wonder if they still have my phonenumber....; )


Johanna said...

Oh wow. And how come you never told us that before? You've met a real FBI agent? Way cool. ;P

So my kitchen window excitement is turning out to be quite a blah after all. No Russian secret service agents came to knock my door to check that I'd behave. Hrmph.


Anonymous said...

Ahem..I think it was an CIA agent and not FBI. Can't say what bureau it was exactly. And I definitely don't remember them introducing themselves to us mere orderlies. But a cool looking (if surprisingly fat for an agent as far as I remember) guys they were anyway.

They didn't talk to us personally (thank god for that. I would have confessed anything ; ), but I saw them coming and collecting our info from chief of staff or someone like that.

But it was exciting anyway.

And of course I don't wish that something really serious would have happened to Reagan during his visit. But it could have been an experience of a lifetime if he was brought to the OR while I was working there. The eyes of the whole world would have been aimed at the very place I was working. Whoah.