Where two seas meet.

Blogroll, Film Photography, Finland, nature, Pikku

This was probably it, our only week of family holidays this summer. Fortunately, it happened to be by the sea – in fact, as Lea said, by two seas, separated by a sandspit. We made it all the way up to Kalajoki, one of like two spots in Finland with real sandy beaches.

We did enjoy ourselves, but the situation remains bleak – I mean, the life goes on, children are being born (literally all my friends are expecting this year, which is a great thing of course but also reminds me of how few friends I have…) and start schools, people commute to work and shop, commuter trains are filling up.

Now, I’ve been trapped in mu loneliness pit for some time – studying on my own, working from home, looking after a baby/toddler, moving houses (and countries) – and the uncertainty of the current situation somewhat worsens it. I’m all for travelling responsibly, but how does one travel without putting the family and the wider society in jeopardy economy and health-wise? It feels foolish wanting to travel, explore, relax and do nothing somewhere else and take a break while we should take life seriously. It feels selfish to dream of a job that is not essential to the society in any way. It feels unimportant wishing I had more friends in times where we should not really be making that much contact with others. It feels strange squandering money on a film scanner (yes I did) when people are losing jobs…

… are we allowed to let go? Are we allowed to have fun? Is it appropriate? Or shall we just put on a face mask and a serious face underneath and act responsibly at all times?

(Which reminds me – yesterday I was like the only person wearing a face mask on the bus. For those of you who do not know, masks are recommended in public transport in Finland, yet not compulsory. I walked down the aisle (of the bus, not a church) and those non-believers not wearing a mask just looked aside. Every single of them. I mean I was not even trying to make eye contact, just listening to my favourite podcast.)

Of course I have not been sitting still. Actually, we have done a lot of small trips around, visiting various bodies of water, animals, berries, mushrooms and other places that are not Home. And that was great of course, especially when we were joined by some company, so things are not awful, they just could be more comprehensible.

Here, enjoy a few pictures of mushrooms. Because Lea loves them. And because I wanted to boast – they were in my first negative batch I developed by myself.

Sprouts.

Art, Corona, Finland, photography, Picture a day, Pikku

Everything around us is sprouting, growing, bubbling, oozing and pushing through. The leaves have already appeared on the trees, again, almost unnoticed, and one morning I looked at Her and she, too, she has grown so much. I’m not in the best of my states, but then I look at her and see the wisdom in her eyes and I know that at least one thing is going well. She is.

Now I have a great feature photo and, who knows, maybe a little click-bait? Well since you are here, please note that I also updated the Project Emergency portfolio today. I’m a bit proud of it, with all its imperfections it does capture a certain period of my life – and everybody’s life, in fact, we are in it together.

Be blessed.

Nearly a year ago.

Blogroll, Corona, Finland, Helsinki, photography, Picture a day

Getting scans from a long-forgotten film made my day (thanks!). Well, that and that Lidl stocks my favourite (read: the only I ever liked) mineral water for at least a short bit. I was so astounded I actually gaped from underneath my face mask. From this you can see how desperately lonely I have been lately, and no, I do not only mean the covid-situation, although that certainly is not helping. Enough of sobbing.

Anyways, the pictures reminded me of the worry-free summer last year, of the warmth that we have been waiting for (and got snow instead) and, of course, of how tiny the tiny one was last summer. It felt and it still actually feels like reading a book for some time and then lingering in the plot and the settings for the rest of the day (or night). So here, my three (or so) faithful readers, enjoy some black-and-white Finland’s sun.

Diary.

Blogroll, Finland, Winter frolics

I’ve been keeping a diary for some time now – for various reasons. It has helped me to focus and stay sharp; also, it is a habit that I have been able to keep. The problem is that it has kept me from sharing myself online, which I think is a pity. Not that my visitor numbers would be high, I just thought I could peeking out again. So hello!

Reeds and attempts of ice on an unusually warm Sunday in late January. In South Finland, that is. Wait, it is February already… this picture has just lost some of its charm 😀

I have been properly activating myself, signing up for a lot of voluntary activities that I do not burn for (that was the idea) and trying to get busy with art again although a certain someone has been successfully stopping me from it. I have been rather grateful lately – for health, for material wealth, for wisdom and… for the fact that I have been able to avoid ways of living that would destroy me in the long run. Also, for the skills I have been developing in the past years – patience, fatigue resistance and humbleness.

And I think that Dry February is absolute bullsh*t – everybody who feel like they should take part in it might like to look at their alcohol consuming habits and other life choices in general. But the whole challenge made me think about my identity, my presence, my visibility.

I’m afraid I will never make it into the news – I’m not an exceptional scientist (in fact, I do not want to work in research), I don’t take drugs or drink and I don’t think I will need to recover from dependency on these, I don’t live in a country exotic enough to my compatriots and because I ignore social media I remain invisible to most people (including my peers). My health troubles have prevented me from achieving what I had imagined, but they are not interesting or serious enough. My art is breakthrough in its honesty, that is, how little I depend on Photoshop and general augmentation and instead rely on tangible media. My life is not drastically minimalist or zero-waste, my taste is somehow different but not crazy enough. I’m not exceptionally anything, but I’m exceptional. And I feel good about that.

20&20.

Art, Blogroll, Finland, Lifestyle

It took me a short while to write that first post of 2020 – I thought it would be a bold post full of emotions, resolutions, plans, optimism and gratitude. It did not turn out so, instead, I’m here to tell everyone that I probably have a roller-coaster-ride year ahead. And also I so need to share with you how tired and low-key depressed I am and how much I’m bubbling inside, impatient to create.

I’m now writing pieces of my theses, some days I enjoy it more than others, most times I get frustrated over my own inabilities and un-s and in-s and dis-s. And then there are days like today, when I go and pick up L* from daycare, the sun is shining and we take the long way to the shops. Via parks, swings, duck ponds and reminders of winter that is yet to come. Every day like this makes me realise how much hard work I – and most of us – put into the beige or grey mass of everyday life in hope of getting happy moments of shiny success or glory. But at the end of the day, the most satisfying pleasures are the every day ones. Just like eating that 80% chocolate or pressing the stop button on the bus.

Tiny treasure.
We found some colours outside! In January.
I just made a visual statement: it is January after all, although a bit less wintery for my liking.

Enough of basic bitch life wisdom – the time is.. late so I’d better join my better third in bed and see what tomorrow will bring! Hopefully not another headache.

This too shall pass.

Blogroll, Finland, Pikku

My daughter feeds me, combs my hair, smiles at me and plays by my side. Cuddles, squeaks, babbles, smacks her lips. And I realise with every day to come that one day, one day quite soon, this precious time the two of use have will end. We will get (back to) our commitments, interests and ways of getting through the day. We will be mum&daughter forever, but it will change.

I’m writing this as a reminder to myself that although some days are less bearable than others, that it is not in one’s power to be the perfect entertaining-attending-active mother at all times, that this baby time is so valuable. I *need* more time for myself, I need more company, I need tricks to get my baby to fall asleep faster and to eat better. I need and want to develop myself in other ways than, uhm, being caring, patient and multitasking.

But I will miss being a mum of tiny Lela.

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YesterdayÂŽs snow.

Blogroll, Finland, Helsinki, Lifestyle, Picture a day

Not the jolly sunny kind, just wet and a plenty of it. One moment you can barely walk and you have to dig your personal parking space. A few hours later everything is melting and you question the nature’s intensions and the purpose of life while you wade through heaps of wish-wash. And this all, this shall freeze over tonight!

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Shortly on Naantali and HĂ€rmĂ€lĂ€ gorge.

Blogroll, Finland, Picture a day, Traveling, Turku

I will be really brief when it comes to telling you about Naantali, a traditional spa-town close to Turku. It is what a spa-town should be like – cosy, small, touristy and close to the water. Nowadays most tourists come to Naantali to take either a fake steam-boat cruise or go to the Moomin theme park. We were not interested in either, just walked around and visited the tiny and somehow unimpressive museum.

But Naantali, that is off-white, lace and beige. Wood and cobble stones. Sea and ice-cream.

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And then I HAD to go and visit the HĂ€rmĂ€lĂ€ gorge, ie. a big crack in rock. It was great to walk/crawl through it, but impossible to take decent pictures due to an impossible angle – camera lens combination. If you want to know more, take a peek here. I would definitely recommend to visit if you are around Turku, and please do so during some unpopular times as the crack might get crowded during summer weekends (and totally empty in winter). Mass tourism, hey.

The sunniest place in Finland.

Blogroll, Finland, Pampas, Picture a day, Traveling

Is in Österbotten, more specifically, it is the town of Vaasa. It quickly became one of my top towns in Finland, and yes, it should be the place which receives the most sunshine in Finland. I only spend there a day and did not take any pictures, just used the sun thing as a click-bait.

Nah I did take some pics, like these from the Edvinin puisto – Edvin’s park, a smallish recreational park filled with amateur scrape metal sculptures just like these:

The following batch of photos, in fact, is taken in NÀrpes, where our tomatoes and cucumbers and flowers grow, and to where large quantities of immigrants move to work. So this would be the most representative photograph of the area:

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Another interesting sight would be these church stalls – yep, over 120 wooden stalls for the church visitors’ horses. They were in surprising good conditions, although I cannot really think of a good way to use these. One stood open so I took a peek – and it was empty, then I tried to spy in the wood cracks and none of the stalls seems to be in any kind of use at the moment…

A couple of Swedish miles (one Swedish mile = 10 km) away from Vaasa I drove and walked around the coast line. It was great as usual, I mean this blog is over-flooding with blue-green landscape sceneries and boats and alike.

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While in NĂ€rpes I also visited Kristinestad a bit – a tiny picturesque town with a historic centre and the curious Carlsro museum. The wooden villa (which is not electrified by the way) belonged to a certain Carlström, local tradesman and ship-maker of the late 19th and early 20th century. The business did not go that well in the end and he shot himself in 1910. To cut the long story shot, the villa stood abandoned for some time and deteriorated accordingly and was sold in an auction in the early 1960s for close to nothing to a local weirdo. The idea was that in the worst case he could use the building material as fire wood, but fortunately, he did not do that, instead, he filled the villa with all kinds of old/antique/strange/novelty/curious objects. It really is crammed with random stuff! Well, come and see for yourself, the piles of pots, books, dolls, mirrors, shoemaker accessories look particularly interesting in the omnipresent gloomy dusk…

 

… while the house itself is really fresh and inviting on the outside …

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… for the most part at least.

And as you can see from the pictures, the sunshine was abundant, so there is something to the sunniest-place-gossip!