reede, jaanuar 25, 2008


Remember how I wrote that I missed our ahjud? Well the novelty of bringing firewood into the house is wearing off.

It's not that don't I enjoy a little pyromania now and then, it's that you have to start the fire, then wait, then maybe it goes out, then start it again.

Once you are lucky enough to get the fire going, you must observe it all times to make sure you add more wood before the first batch is reduced to embers. And if you live in a house like mine, where you might have three going at the same time on a cold night, you become preoccupied with your ahjud.

We have a huge stack of old Postimees issues in our kuur. But it seems there's never enough kindling for the fire. And I have burned through some pretty sentimental issues of Postimees or Eesti Päevaleht. Yesterday it was the issue about Jaan Kross' passing. A few weeks ago it was Juhan Peegel who went up in smoke.

I also tried to get the sauna going, to no avail. I had to crouch down and keep feeding the sucker old copies of Postimees and cardboard and basically anything dispensable I could burn. And yet the cold dampness of the sauna kept extinguishing my efforts.

In this environment, one can feel for the gentleman above for taking advantage of an old wooden home in Kopli in Tallinn, recently gutted by fire, that was demolished yesterday by authorities who have become sensitive that that area of the nation's capital is something of a tinderbox.

I know he looks desperate making off with his booty of Kopli siding, but it is winter and he needs a bit more fuel for his sauna. I hope you understand.

15 kommentaari:

Kristopher ütles ...

The air supposedly shaves seven months off people's lifespans in Tallinn. (There was no data given for other cities.) They're thinking about retricting ahjud in new developments. Somehow I find it hard to believe that stoves are the main cause of the illnesses and not the new developments and lack of light rail.

Aigar ütles ...

I have a good tip for you to help you get the fire started. First of all it is essential to place the firewood so that the air can flow through. I usually prefer putting 2 logs on the sides and then stacking another 2-3 on top of them, sideways. So basically you have like a small kennel. When the firewood is dry, it shouldn't be too hard to get it going with regular Postimees. When that fails I usually grab some toilet paper and soak it in cooking oil, not too much though. Risso rapsiõli works good. When you set fire to the cooking oil t.p. mixture, it should burn for about 5 minutes thus helping you get the fire going even in bad conditions. Try it out! Cheers!

Trek ütles ...

I use those little Eres fuel cubes. Just one little cube get's it going every time (if the wood is dry.)

Andres ütles ...

Also remember to twist the paper into a small club-like thing. And put the paper UNDER the firewood, it has no effect if you just stack paper after paper on the wood material.

Wahur ütles ...

If it does not want to burn the first question should be: "When the chimney was last cleaned?" Cause if the answer is anything else than "Last Fall" then its bad news and plain dangerous.
Otherwise its just an experience thing. In fact, as I discovered just few days ago, paper is not strictly needed at all. I found I had ran out of Postimees completely (best-burning is actually Äripäev pink paper and even this can never beat good old birch bark). So it was old scout stuff - arranged logs more carefully than usual, cut bunch of slim, dry sticks for starter and it burned just fine. One match.

Anonüümne ütles ...

All I am saying is that tribalism is causing problems everywhere:

Blogaddict ütles ...

What's the (average) temperature in your peldik or kemmerg?

Just wondering. :-)

Blogaddict ütles ...

I am definately loosing my once spectacular chops of starting a fire. Now, if suddenly faced with this Flinstonian lifestyle again, I would have to re-learn how to be 'mees' again.

Giustino ütles ...

All I am saying is that tribalism is causing problems everywhere:

I don't think things are as bad as the media might sometimes make it seem. Given the amount of corpses that piled up in and out of Estonia in the 1940s, if the worse that happens is some windows get broken or a statue gets moved, I'd say the little country that could is still trucking along.

The glass is half full, et cetera.

Rainer ütles ...

I was recently converted to sawdust brick-religion instead of log-worshipping. They don't catch fire immediately but when they do there's no stopping them. I know they don't look as sexy as logs by your fireplace or ahi, but they certainly do the trick. And you get more for less. In every sense.

PS Who is this puu person who keeps bellyaching over everything? It seems he/she is rather young, but at least that is the only problem in one's life that goes away by itself. Only extreme youth can explain political naiveté of such scale.

Kristopher ütles ...

Alas, I have a Tulikivi stove. Not allowed to burn puubrikett or even pine or spruce.

Puu -- a bad thread to be posting in, even if inadvertently.

Puu strikes me as a depressive half-Estonian female Lenny Bruce. Like Lenny, hopefully better in audio or live.

Kind of funny to hear something like "tribalism is causing problems everywhere" and a Faza link flit through the middle of a serious discussion on building a fire, though.

Anonüümne ütles ...

Puupea is off her meds.

Giustino ütles ...

She's probably more exposed to these nasty ongoing disputes over who killed who and who bears "collective guilt" for certain actions.

There is a widespread international notion that Estonian Russians are a Kopli maja ready to burst into flames at any moment. Some see the Bronze night as part of this hidden menace, ready to burst forth on any occasion.

The only advice I can give on the subject is the reason that things are the way they are is because the Estonian right wing has an agenda and has had one for 20 years.

The Estonian left as well as members of the ethnic Russian community have no agenda and no leadership. Saving a monument is not an agenda, though I am sure organizers saw it as a campaign around which they could build a movement.

But the violence alienated most Estonians -- of any background, and what exactly is the next fight? Are there any more controversies bound to spring up. And is Venemaa as likely to support these activists when Ansip played and won?

So it's like their movement is stillborn. Let me give you an example of a cultural agenda. In the 1920s and 30s, the Estonian Swedes had a cultural agenda.

The Estonian Swedes demanded a guarantee to the position of the Swedish minister of ethnic affairs with the government of Estonia, a guarantee to Swedish representation in the Parliament, cultural autonomy, equal rights to the Swedish language on the level of parish administration and in court cases concerning Swedish, a judge with Swedish-language skills.

We might agree that the Estonian Swedes made a good start with that, and even though none of their demands were fully satisfied, their small community made good progress. They founded their own agricultural school in Pürksi, a private secondary school in Haapsalu, they inspired the native Swedish to found the chair of Swedish language studies at the University of Tartu.

That's a cultural agenda. So what's the Estonian Russian cultural agenda? If they want to collectively achieve anything then they'll have to lobby for it by themselves.

I think this concept that the state would somehow organize everyone into convenient boxes is quite Soviet. People should stop looking to the state to tell them who they are.

kassandra ütles ...

Another idea on how to start a fire, learned from the same people who have those great funerals:

It's hard to start a fire if the chimney is cold. There is a little metal flap at the bottom of the chimney stack, that is used for cleaning it. Open it and hold about a 5 to 8 inch burning twist of newspaper in it for a few minutes. That warms up the chimney and your fire will light easier.

If the burning flame doesn't get pulled upward by the draft, that means your chimney is built wrong, or it needs cleaning, or the weather is "sombune", very still and cloudy, and it's hard to start a fire under those weather conditions.

Anonüümne ütles ...
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