July 07, 2006

She stole my päkapikk.

Päkapikk = dwarf, gnome

The Estonians are very fond of the päkapikk. It appears in stories and legends of all kinds, often popping out from under rocks or behind trees to cause mischief or to offer help. We are so fond of the päkapikk that we make little dolls of them and hang them on our Christmas trees and stand them up on our bookshelves as decoration.
My twin sister, Twirling Girl, stole my Viking päkapikk and put it on her shelf:

She insists it is hers, that she bought it in Estonia. I distinctly remember getting it as a gift from my godfather. Or maybe I bought it in Toronto. She's had it for a while, since it's been 5 years since we lived together; it must have ended up in her hands when we finally untangled the intricately woved threads of our shared 30-year placenta. Obviously, my memory is as foggy as hers, but I am 74% sure it is mine.
I'm letting her keep it, though; it looks so nice next to her other Estonian items, while it would look quite out of place packed into one of my moving crates. I am content to leave him in this new home.

For now.

I would just like her to acknowledge it is mine, and that I am gracious in letting her keep it. But she won't give me that satisfaction.

My Päkapikk's new neighborhood:

Another päkapikk; a girl.
They are life partners.
kärbseseen ornament.
Amanita muscaria or Fly Agaric mushroom;
a very serious mushroom.
It looks pretty enough to eat.
Don't do it.
An artistic bowl made of dolomite,
which abounds in northern and western Estonia.

A wooden trinket box bearing lithographs
of old Estonian postage stamps.

A small carved õllekann (beer mug)
and napkin holder made of kadakas (juniper wood).
Three wooden dolls dressed
in rahvariided (Estonian national costumes).

Siil (hedgehog) made of kadakas (juniper).

Põdrad (moose) made of pewter.

We like kadakas.
This is another box made of it.
Isn't it a lovely wood?

Thus ends of the tale of the stolen päkapikk. I hope that you have learned something about our cultural trinkets and about our language today; knowing that you have would lend me comfort at this lonely time.


ginonymous said...

i require a hedgehog like that. do i have to go to estonia to find one?

'cause i'm not above that.

jamwall said...

i don't speak estonian but i DO speak a mean swedish chef.


miss kendra said...

that last wooden box is quite lovely.

also, i would be pretty pissed if that were my stolen pakapikk, because he's clearly awesome.

Twirling Girl said...

I did not steal the pa"kapikk. He is MINE. Even if indeed he turns out to be yours (he is not), he is clearly happy amongst his fellow Estonian friends, boxes, and figurines. If you behave, I might lend him to you, for a small fee. He can spend summers at your place maybe?

tuuna taco said...

I too, would return to Estonia just to buy more trinkets. Everything there is dirt cheap. I spent half my money ($600 US) there on food, beer, and coffee and the other half on some trinkets, jewelery, and several wool sweaters. I missed the hedgehog, wish I had gotten one too.
I wish my sisters wouldn't fight over the pa"kapikk. If I knew where I could find one around here (I have one lead) I would get SG one just to keep peace in the family!!!