Half a Mile from Russia

I do not know whether it is because of the generation I am from or whether Russia does still have a reputation of a slightly forbidden, mystical and dangerous place. I do know though that as I was driving up through Finland and started seeing sign posts to the Russian border I felt a small thrill. This became even more pronounced as I was travelling along an undulating, straight and typically Finnish road that was, according to my map no more than half a mile from the border.

I have no idea what would have happened if I had listened to the voices in my head urging me to park the car, get out and go for a ‘wander’. Would there have been three metre high fences, barbed wire, dogs and machine gun posts? I very much doubt it. If I had found my way through the lakes and bogs and undergrowth I’m sure there would have been absolutely nothing. But it was fun thinking about it.

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