Thursday, March 18, 2010

Posh and Becks have left the city...but Dr. Orava is still here!

I think this interview with Sakari Orava in the Helsingin Sanomat gives some examples of Finnishness.

Over the years the man's reputation as a miracle-worker on troublesome joints has spread far and wide, and he has had no need to look for patients.
The best athletes and top coaching staff have him on speed-dial when they need help.
If he declines the desperate request, it might well be that the voice at the other end of the line squeaks: "But...but... we'll pay whatever you ask!"
Why on earth is it that everyone wants to come to Turku and Orava?
"Search me. I wonder about it myself at times, how it has come to this", the doctor shakes his head.
(italics added).

and this:

Occasionally the local physicians are so overawed by stardom that they cannot be sufficiently honest with the patients. No sports star wants to hear that his or her career is over. Then they call in someone from outside - like Orava.
"It is easier for a country bumpkin like me to come in and say: "I'm sorry, but it's over."

and I really like his plan for retirement:

At 64, it will probably soon be over for Orava himself.
After 65 years of age, surgeons have to make a separate application for the right to operate on patients.
He has no qualms about letting go.
"Maybe someone will grant me an extension. Or then not. And I'll maybe then go off to Florence to study art history", says Sakari Orava, court surgeon to the world's sporting elite.

quotes from the HS are in bold.

There is a culture of modesty in Finland that some might say borders on an inferiority complex, but the flip side is an extreme sense of national pride. Can one say the Finns are modestly proud?

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