It’s now my work day number four in the National Library of Finland. The work room is cool and quiet, there are big windows with rain splattering on them and I’m trying to figure out what makes the Aleph library system tick and how does Unicode actually work, especially with Arabic, Devanagari and Cyrillic alphabets. Yesterday we went to visit a librarian who catalogues books in Arabic and assorted other Mid-Eastern languages and got to know the problems concerning those, which I should start fixing in the future.
A moment ago I got back from a sushi lunch with Susi and Jori in Kurvi, in the rather improbably named Kahvikulma. I’ve walked past the place dozens of times, dismissing it as just another low-grade and messy cafe for Kurvi locals. Instead the place has a pretty damn decent lunch sushi buffet complemented with friendly staff, so the place is well worth checking out.
The atmosphere in the work room is timelessly peaceful. I have a ton of interesting stuff to study and learn, without any hurry to be somewhere or get anything done within strict deadlines. The novelty value of this for me can not be overstated. A room temperature that is under 26C and the absence of the sound of kids’ TV programs being edited are already a cultural shock of a kind after the last couple of years. Not to mention the lack of a towering pile of deadlines and people asking me stuff every 15 minutes either live or via e-mail.
In the turn of the millennium I didn’t really appreciate the slow and slightly disorganized pace of the academia, but now… I think I’ll like it here.