Sunday, August 8, 2010

Smog concern

I've spent the past two days in Helsinki, where I've visited both cathedrals and eaten reindeer. I also went on a day trip to an island fortress, Suomenlinna.

When I arrived here, late on Friday night, I was alarmed to discover that the padlock was missing from my bag. I can't be certain, but I think the contents had been gone through as well... although nothing appears to be missing. On the flight to Helsinki I was in transit at Budapest. On board the Malev flight I'd been reading in the Budapest Times about airport workers being arrested for stealing from passengers' luggage. Anyhow... I need a new padlock. I've got a spare one I can use for the time being, but it's not particularly strong.

My other concern at the moment is the growing air pollution in Moscow. I will travel by train to St Petersburg early on Monday morning. I'm due to take a domestic flight from there to Moscow on Friday (the 13th!) and stay for five nights. The TV reports I've seen talk of increasing contamination with carbon monoxide and other pollutants from the fires. Visibility is very poor and the heat is extreme. If things don't change soon I don't think it'll be worth going to Moscow. Once I take such a decision I'll have to change my flights. It's easy enough to extend my time in St Petersburg, but I'll be sad if I have to miss out on seeing the capital.

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