I could take advantage of the invitation to a workshop
with representatives of the new European Chemicals Agency at Helsinki
to visit the wonderful antiquarian bookshop of our founder member Kimmo
Välkesalmi. In spite of difficult road conditions – the severe
winter had Helsinki under control that afternoon with biting cold temperatures
down to -10°C – my colleague and I could quite well reach the
shop on foot from the hotel. Then we had a nice conversation with Kimmo
– a long-time barter partner – naturally about chess in Finland
and chess books, certainly he had several thousand to view in his shop.
At least I could buy three interesting items, among them this strange
game collection of the meanwhile inactive GM Heikki Kallio:
brochure of 42 pages containing 31 (undated) games. Self published,
The author has switched to professional poker in the meantime.
Here the link to his web site
and to the Wikipedia
page (in German only).
The origin of the beautifully designed chess set for blind persons (photo
below) remained unclear. However Kimmo was completely enthusiastic when
I advised him of the historical importance of his youngest new acquisition
– Amsterdam 1889: Emanuel Lasker’s first international tournament.
impressive chess department of the bookshop
Välkesalmi in his area
special chess set for blind persons
Välkesalmi and Michael Negele