In the memory of Mauno Koivisto.

Blogroll, Helsinki, nature, Picture a day

Today has been a particularly weird day. Former Finnish president Mauno Koivisto was buried today, the state funeral was aired and everyone has been feeling kinda under the weather. The emotions, once again, just hopped on the others – or maybe it was just me.

A nice BLT sandwich and a few hours outside around Ruukinranta in Espoo (that’s where Galen Kallela museum is!) did it for my part. And close to the port I found these buttercups and they are for Mauno.


The port, yeah, well there were some boats and buoys, and I guess this diesel pump has had it 😀


There are some lovely Villas around Ruukinranta, something like old Westend, but much more picturesque. More wood and more soul. And more houses for sale with “minor roof damages” – but with amazing tile stoves or wooden furnitures! Dining table, I’m coming back for you 😉


The downsides of the area are bad collective traffic connections and the omnipresent humming noise from the nearby highway. I’m sure the locals love the Turku motorway.

A short walk from the port and Villa Åkerblom, a popular event venue dressed up as a humble wooden villa, is the famous Villa Elfvik. It is, in fact, a nature education centre with a cosy café, several children- and wheelchair-friendly nature trails, a bird-watching tower and… nature diversity. It was remarkably awesome! Seriously, a lovely Espoo surprise. We’re coming back on bikes, so expect more pictures within the next weeks!

So, this is the main venue, Villa Elfvik…


… a garden gazebo… MIU_5907

… and the nature trail!


There were birds nesting. Apparently.


And this is Otaniemi and Aalto University.



Blogroll, Finland, Helsinki, Lifestyle, Picture a day

I understand that a picture per day is pretty hard when it’s cloudy outside – or when you are stuck inside day in day out, or when you’re depressed and cannot really see the point.

But here we go. Things happen nevertheless. I went for a cheer-up ride to Espoo (the horror), more precisely to the gateway to Suvisaaristo, and even more precisely to Matasaari. There is nothing particularly exciting about the space, maybe the chapel (the red house pictured below), the sheer number of couples getting married in here and the fact that there was no-one to be seen. With an exception of an elderly couple fishing.


And a bit of summer reminiscence. A dried-out waterfall (algae really) and the last purple of the year:


Oh and today we visited a place many Finland/Helsinki-located folks must have passed: it’s just off the main railroad between Helsinki and, well, anywhere really, just off Pasila stop. The place is not unlike Villa Mehu we visited a few weeks ago, except for that it is less artsy, less over the top and reachable by public transport, and it is known to the locals as Kivilinna. A complex of one-woman-made simple building and walls made out of stones found around Pasila, an attempt to live on one’s own and build an alternative world, disturbed maybe by the passing-by trains. A popular place to visit by old and young alike. It has made it to the news a few times recently, mostly because it has been fenced and people have been showing they disagreement. Now. Why. Unless you are blind, drunk or totally irresponsible, the place is no more dangerous than any other foresty OR urban jungly spot in Pasila… thankfully the locals took matters in their own hands and the fence has been quasi-professionally opened for anyone curious enough… a big thank you to you!



Oh and I need a dog. Or a baby. And I need either of those even more after visiting the Rescue dog event in Suvilahti on Saturday. Those soft paws, kind eyes, thankful hearts and therapeutic souls, how can you… how can you enter and not fall in love with one, regardless of their “family” or placement status.


(… and a little urban landscape shot from Suvilahti🙂


How is Finland otherwise? Ah well, getting cold, dark and more and more Christmasy. The first Christmas decorations were spotted in mid September, there are more of those to be seen. The one major wintery thing missing is sweets: I can’t wait for Lidl and their German Christmas/Winter goodies! Nomnomnom, marzipan and ginger-bread (and random liquor in combination with chocolate)!

I’m afraid I have quite a week ahead of me and it makes me feel partly excited and partly paralysed with fear. Avail or not. Disappointed or what. Hopeful either way, as this too shall pass and the things will start looking better soon? Right?

Feeding ducks.

Blogroll, Finland, Helsinki

This post may mean a step backwards toward the uniform crowd of life-style blogs. Despite the weird spring cold I enforced a trip to the… bird lake in Espoo, just off the power plant.

How exotic! With a swampy twist. But I found what I was looking for – gorgeousness overload!


Some of the ducklings were too small to swim, so they preferred to sleep in piles, snuggled up next to their ever-alert mummy. I was surprised by the numbers of offspring per mother – we counted 8 to 12 ducklings per head. Well. As I said: gorgeousness overload.

And after that Finland lost to Canada and nothing happened. Except for the cold and being exercise dope sick…

Passing by.

Blogroll, Helsinki

You know… you know when you keep passing THAT PLACE every week and every time you tell yourself that one day you would like to explore the place? Yesterday was the day.

Sadly, the beautiful Sinebrychoff Mansion in Espoo (I know right) was not taking advantage of its prime location ON the busiest road in Finland, I could literally feel the cars driving over you.The building was beautiful (especially the abandoned part nearby), so was the little rose garden (with a little gazebo should anybody feel like getting married on Länsiväylä), and I’m sure the exposition in the art museum was as well – all to no avail as the location-location-location is so bad. Poor villa. It did not deserve the road to be built so close to it.