From Touko’s letter to Hely, 18 September 1954

Helsinki, 18 September ‘54

Dear Heikkä,

Thanks for your letter. I’m replying right away as I’ve time on my hands.

Yes, we’ve been meaning to come to Turku every week, but there always seems to be something going on. And now I’m supposed to be very busy as the accompaniment for the gymnastics classes has started, so I don’t think I’ll be able to come for a while. I’ve set the day of prayer in mid-October as my target, and I’ll book it so that I won’t have anything else on. It would be so nice to be able to come over then, or even before, as it’s been ages since the last time I visited. I can’t say anything on Kaija’s behalf, she’ll have to write to you herself.

It’s an unnaturally quiet Saturday afternoon. The Toivonens, who have been staying here in the dining room all summer, causing a lot of trouble and disturbance, finally moved out the day before yesterday, but some of their stuff is still here. Aunt is visiting somebody and Kaija should be coming home from work soon. I’m sitting all alone at home with a pile of apples and plums in front of me. And it just started to rain again. The weather was terrible yesterday. There was a severe thunderstorm and even a short power cut. Every so often, there was a torrential downpour of rain. It seems we’ll have more of the same today, even if it’s drier than forecast.

I’ll have a lot of accompaniment jobs, at least now in the beginning, and probably fewer in winter, unless there are new classes. I don’t mind as there’ll be a long summer ahead without any classes. I’ve had many accompaniment jobs and temporary jobs; tomorrow, for example, I should be playing at a wedding in between the afternoon and evening gigs. There would be plenty of those jobs if only I was free in the evenings. I was also asked to work at a junior theatre but it hasn’t been agreed on yet for anything else but the rehearsals, as we’re not sure if our schedules will fit.

It’s good to be busy and to have a lot of work, as it’s hard to have nothing to do. I’m not in a good place mentally, so it’s bad for me to have too much time to think about things. Settling down is what bothers me more as time goes by. I’m quite old in that respect, and even if I’d love to have such a change in my life, it’s not just a matter of practicalities, but I’d need to be truly in love, and even if I was, it wouldn’t be that simple. I’m terribly shy in this respect, though it’s probably a good thing that I am, because making a rash move could only have unpleasant consequences. It’s much better that it’s just my life that is difficult and unsatisfying, and that I’m not making someone else’s life – or later, a whole family’s life – miserable. I wouldn’t want to be responsible for something like that. I feel that I am still not ready to take that life-changing step, and that is why it’s probably best not to get too worked up about it.

Olli Kuusoja, a violinist who once again became unemployed, made a brave and absolutely sensible move. He got a loan from his rich relatives and opened a shop in Tapiola, behind Lauttasaari. I went there with him yesterday to see the place and plan the interior design. I think he is really lucky. He has a spacious, clean and suitable shop, almost the best one, in a brand new commercial building with all the other shops in the new community. Residential buildings are being erected around it at a dizzying pace, and when the area is completed, there will be 15,000 people in the community. I’m sure there is a big enough customer base there, especially as it’s been agreed that there won’t be another shop selling similar goods. Even though I’m an outsider, I got really excited as we planned the details. And his wife Maiju will fly to Vienna again in a month’s time, she’s been invited to an audition for Karl Böhn’s grand opera, which will be completed soon and has a vacancy for an alto.

That’s all there is for now. We’ve been in good health. I wrote a letter to Father last week. I wonder if they are still in Kakskerta. I’m leaving space here for Kaija and send my love to everyone.