The correspondent of Yle: Russia is my second Motherland

This week in Helsinki, the foreign correspondents of Finnish Yleisradio was acquainted the public with the peculiarities of their work. Kerstin Kronvall, a writer from Moscow, has told, in particular, that after the beginning of the Ukrainian events in 2014 that it became more difficult to work in Russia.

“Before the events in Crimea, people are quite willing to give an interview and friendly to foreign correspondents. After the capture of the Crimea before the war in the Donbass, people become more cautious. I had a case where the place even called the police,” recalls Kronwall.

Also changed the attitude of officials to the foreign press. To receive comments or to seek interviews with civil servants, we have to go through fire, water and copper pipes.

The Helsinki taxi drivers let them not complain

Crazy Moscow traffic jams significantly restrict the work of a writer — you never know, reach the interview 10 minutes or three hours. The metro is fast and convenient, however, in the subway with a television equipment go down is problematic.

“I find it funny when the local taxi drivers complaining about traffic jams in Helsinki. I want to say to them — you don’t know what a real traffic jam,” laughs Kronwall.

Meanwhile, in Moscow has overtaken Helsinki, so it’s the convenience of calling a taxi by smartphone:

“It is very convenient, — says the correspondent, — I push the button, they are using the satellite know where I am, and after about five minutes the machine is already in place. You can pay by credit card, and even send the receipt via email”.

Love implies and criticism

Recently translated Russian service Yle column, Cerstin Kronwall enjoyed great success among readers. The author of the text was a Declaration of love to Russia. This love, however, is not blind, so Kronwall believes it is important to notice both positive and negative sides.

“To be honest, for me, Russia is the second Motherland. For example, I passionately love Finland, but I can see its shortcomings, and there are many things that I would like to improve. So with Russia. I care about this country and the people, but there are many unpleasant, for example, many Russians live in poor conditions. The international policy of Russia also raises questions”.

“I write very many. Some say I’m talking about Russia, and there are those who think that I’m too fond of Putin. So I think I keep the balance,” says Kronwall.

Why would you hurt our children?

Finns always interesting to know what people think about them abroad. According to Kronvall, over the past few years the attitude of Russians to Finland has changed for the worse. If you had remembered Mannerheim, Raikkonen, cheese, clothes and shoes, now talking about other things:

“You in the West reigns lawlessness, solid gay, you puppet of the USA, why are you so bad attitude to our children,” lists Kronwall claims that she expressed to the Russians. However, she recognizes that in Russia there are many people who continue to treat Finland with love.

“They continue to go here. For many Finland was the first contact with the West. In General, on the surface, it seems to me, the attitude has changed, and it has remained good.”

Finnish-Russian relations Kronwall puts a solid “four”… the Russian five-point system. Why not “five” and why not “three”?

“Because “five” is impossible. “Four” because between countries there are no unsolvable problems. But the Troika is too small. The Troika could put the Russian-Swedish relations,” smiles Kronwall.

Talk about the meaning of life with a stranger

In Russia Kronwall not enough relatives left in Finland. In Finland, in turn, she misses the sociability of Russian:

“In Russia, strangers very easily begin to talk to each other in the street, at a concert, anywhere. And not just about the weather, but also about deep personal things. Three minutes are already discussing the meaning of life, says Kronwall. — In five minutes you already know about the marital status of the interlocutor, what his children and grandchildren. And in Finland I work for twenty years with a man and not know he is married or not.”