Sun-mary.

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:

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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!

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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🙂

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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?

Apologetic (t)rain.

Blogroll, Comments, Finland

When I was living in what can without doubts be called the best flat-share ever,  with my flatmates we wrote down some of the brightest ideas we came up with (usually in the kitchen, for some unexplainable reason).

One of the ideas was on an autumny note: the nature of British rain. It does happen frequently, yes, but it is very different compared to say Dutch, German or Finnish rain.

When it rains in the above-mentioned countries, it is usually the all-or-nothing rain (with the exception of the autumn drizzle), pouring down like as if there was no tomorrow, sometimes the drops would become steady streams of freezing liquid flowing parallel to the Earth’s surface, blinding, leaving you and your clothes without a chance.

British rain, however, starts conspicuously, carefully, with its head down. The drops are avoiding coming down in some recognisable pattern. For the entire duration of the shower you feel as if the rain was behaving as a native English passenger on the tube passing from the front doors toward the middle of the car: “excuse me, sorry, thank you, ooops, sorry darling, thank you, pardon, sorry m’love, thank you, cheers, ta”. Sorry for making you wet. 

Now. Last week I went to Turku to attend an academic conference, unfortunately one of the worse ones. As an anthropologist I can never be sure how (in)valuable my findings and how suitable my method is, our professors did teach us a thing or two about academic research. The principle of anthropology research is to avoid stating the obvious, and the essential presenting skill includes knowing the difference between a “presentation” and “reading your paper in front of everyone (accompanied by a set of mediocre powerpoint slides)”. How come people who have been in the field for 15+ years have not heard of these? What’s the point of reading out loud a paper in bad English and boring everyone while presentation can serve as a great tool for acquainting the audience with research findings?

I was sitting there, melting. Thought I’d chuck one of the muffins we got with our coffee at the poor person, and I sincerely hoped I was not the only one in the lecture theatre thinking that a fair half of presentations were dreary.

The Turku train knew in advance I had a bizzare experience ahead of me and decided to be delayed by half an hour. My fellow passengers and I were freezing at the platform, when – just like the British apologetic rain – the train appeared from behind the poles and slowly and in a guilty manner approached the platform.

Avoiding eye contact, just like a guilty dog.