The day consisted mostly of work-related meetings that were tiring (people loved my presentations, though, which was nice). So nothing spectacular there. However, later when I went out to have some dinner and discuss situation with Jüri and Bertrand something happened. My Hertz NeverLost (tm) thing broke down. It went "acquiring satellite" and just did not get anywhere. Figuring that it would come to its senses sooner or later I drove off, towards a random highway. Still acquiring. Pulled over, shut it off, then back on. Nothing. Turned off the ignition, nothing. At that moment it hit me: I am god knows where without a map, without clear understanding of where my hotel was or where I was going to and I didn't even have a compass. These are all the things I used to have when I drove in the States before I started renting GPS systems (Well, this, and maporama. Used to print out routes to and from all the places I was probable to go and just have a huge stack of paper in the car). Anyway, the luck turned, and after some waiting with ignition off the darn thing did a reboot and after asking my confirmation to "thou shall not use me while driving, you idiot!" displayed a route. Thank you. Next time, will have a map, and Lonely Planet, and compass and important routes and will study the map to understand the basic topology. A promise.
There was this horrible massacre in Virgina Tech at the beginning of the week and this brought me to two thoughts I'd like to share.
Firstly, it was the press coverage. Was sitting on my bed at the hotel watching CNN (or fox or cbs or whoever, they all had the same basic information) when they were about to reveal the identity of the shooter. Went and checked upon Estonian news later and turned out most of the bigger sites had published the news about the identity a couple of hours before CNN had it. Heck, they even knew it was because of a unhappy love story. Makes you wonder, how come an Estonian newspaper had news like this before any of the big US stations that were on the story like ravens. Until you read the Estonian articles more thoroughly. One of them said the guy was Korean at the beginning and Chinese at the end. The other said that each of the victims had at least 3 "showers" of shots ("valang" in Estonian) which the gun the man was using is just not capable of. So my theory is that they just acted upon some rumor going around and not facts that the US stations were waiting for. Used to think that Äripäev was the only crappy newspaper in Estonia but seems the general level of journalism is way lower than what I thought.
Secondly. You see, every liberty a society enjoys, has a price attached. You get democracy and you also get the chance that a charismatic idiot gets elected. You get freedom of speech and you also get people claiming there was no holocaust. You get freedom to carry a gun and you also get lunatics running amok with them. And there's the unfortunate catch. With the last one, the people who actually enjoy the liberty are not the ones paying the price. Because, well, they own a gun and are therefore pretty unlikely to get shot at (or at least can retaliate rapidly). Instead, kids at school and people on the streets will suffer. Just stating the facts here, people in the US have to make that choice.