Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Otso and Karhunkierros

Jukka Parkkinen 2008: Karhumäen Otso ja Karhunkierros
Illustrator: Pia Westerholm

Aunt Amalia has a birthday and constable Oiva Karhunen gives her  and Otso a camping trip to Karhunkierros. Aunt Amalia loves nature, but is at her best in a well groomed park. She is not very excited to sleep in the cold damp forest.

The drive to the starting point of the round, even then Aunt Amalia tries to persuade the others to stay in a hotel. Constable Karhunen refuses and the start the round.

Evening falls and they start to set up camp. Unfortunately constable Karhunen forgot the tent poles. Aunt Amalia finds great poles from sign posts that forbid making fire and littering. They do not forbid their use of tent poles.

I especially like the pikes and fish sticks
waiting for a submarine
When they reach a river, with a suspension brigde hanging over it.  Aunt Amalia is afraid of the brigde and freezes, when they reach the mid point. The bridge starts swinging and the bears fall into the river. Constable Karhunen loses his bag and the bears build a raft to go after the bag.  And of course there is white water.  But they find the backpack!

In summer time, there is always something to eat in the forest.
They build a campfire with hay and sticks, since their matches got wet. Their food got lost, when they took a dive to the river, so they have to find something else.  Constable Karhunen and Otso pick up berries, Aunt Amalia wants to go fishing, which the others find odd, since she does not have anything to fish with. But she is a resourceful one, she has yarn and a bobby pin in her purse.

She gets fish, Otso and constable Karhunen find not only berries but mushrooms as well.  The leftover porridge is used as pan cakes the next morning. Constable Karhunen finds honey and the bees find him. Soon he is running as fast as he can.

They have spend a week in the forest and they lost the trail, when they fell into the river. Constable Karhunen claims that he knows exactly where they are. He has a map. Of the Bearhill not Karhunkierros. Aunt Amalia is getting bored and is tired of porridge, she wants ice cream. She orders the others to follow her. Suddenly the forest starts to thin out, there is a road and an ice cream van. Aunt Amalia thanks constable Karhunen for a lovely experience.

I have wanted to go to Karhunkierros for a while now. But like Aunt Amalia, I am more of a hotel than a tent person.  Usually the camping/ hiking trips are very romanticized, but this book gives a glimpse of what might happen. Maybe I'll just stick to the day trips in Southern Finland.

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