I’m not a historybuff in any way, but have enjoyed historical narratives and lessons what historical stories have been able to tell us about changes in time. It is not that one can distill thorough life lessons from past events, but rather get the sense that our viewpoint to time and current moment can not predict what happens in near future — just like people hundred or 50 years ago were not able to foresee what the world is today.
Satu’s parents have been interested and have taken us with them to visit historical sites in the south-east Finland, around their neighborhoods and areas – which have had large transformations in last hundreds years.
Last summer we visited among others Langinkoski villa, which was russia’s emperor’s summer villa.
Site was beautiful and even though the streams do not have similar power as I imagine they have had, it was nice to visit and reflect what the life of aristocrat and everyday people of that time have been. Just like visits to a old school finnish summer cottage, you start to remember and value all the small comforts we have in modern life from heating to water closets and running hot and cold water.
However most amazed I was about pictures of fishes that were got from local rapids. Photos with fishers and their catch they looked like monster fishes from Amazon or science fiction novels. It honestly felt unimaginable to understand the these same streams have been homes to such large fish stock.
After Langinkoski we visited Vellamo museum in Kotka.
Kotka has been a large harbor city with good access to sea from local factories and industry – as well as short access to Russia via land, but has lost it’s importance as industries have changed and some of the transportation has changed to other ports.
Museum nicely exhibits maritime history and life along the coastline, which in itself should be enough to visit the museum. However for me the much more interesting parts were the historical perspectives to the area and trade — in which the access the sea has been hugely valuable.
It should make you feel humble and lucky for the randomness of the world to be able to visit such museums during peace and prosperity — and to be able to reflect back on time on how close in history some major events still are, even though they could feel and seem like from other planets.
It should also make one appreciate and work towards better world — societies and systems that would be more antifragile ( see Taleb’s book on the subject ) rather than prone to suffer from changes and randomness of the time.