Finland, part I

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Well hello there! Finally recovered from all the traveling on Friday so I have some energy left to write. :) I pretty much spent the entire Friday traveling, I got up at 5.30 in the morning and arrived to where my parents live around 9.30 in the evening. An hour by train, 2,5 hours by plane, 5 hours by bus and 30 minutes by car. It's always very exhausting coming over to see my family and friends.

Right! Plenty of pictures incoming. :) I actually only took one picture during traveling, I just had no energy for anything really. My back was being awful for most of the way and I was just plain shattered so I pretty much snoozed most of the travel. Anyways, this picture is from Lahti I think. I found it quite funny how there's this huge motorway right next to this huge bit of countryside.

My parents have two pets nowadays, a cat called Enni and a German Sheperd Luka. We used to have another cat and a Caucasian mountain dog, but they've both been put down recently due to age / illness. Luka went absolutely mad when she saw me Friday night, just running between my legs and making all kinds of spastic noises.

There's one amazing thing about being in the sticks. Nobody cares when you wear ridiculous shoes like Crocs. They are incredibly comfy but would never agree to wear them in town, they're strictly countryside shoes. :D I actually bought these shoes for work a few years ago when I needed some comfy shoes to wear all day when walking around, best work shoes I've ever worn.

This picture of the red outside buildings brings up so many memories. It's a little pathway that leads from the front garden to our cow barn. The rocks under the building was always a cool spot to play at, I used to climb on the rocks pretending that the rock slabs on the ground were lava or something. There's a lot of holes and nails on the wall to hold on to, it was like rock climbing to me. :D

I've also been spotted by mosquitos and horse flies. Didn't take them long unfortunately. I was bitten by a tiny horse fly and the bite swell up to be the size of a 10p coin. And it itches like mad.

I've decided to take it easy this week and just relax when I can. There's not really that much to do around here anyways so I've gone back to a hobby that I've neglected for quite a while now - reading. Currently I'm reading Robert Fabbri's False God of Rome, a third book from his Vespasian series. I've always been very into the history or Rome so this is a book series that I've fallen in love with.

And in case I finish this book before going back to England, I've also got Lord of the Rings on my Kindle as a backup. Definitely won't finish that anytime soon.

Sauna is a very essential part of the Finnish culture. Many households actually have two separate saunas, one at their home and a separate one by a lake somewhere in the middle of nowhere. Ours is about a ten minute walk away from home though.

It's a very peaceful place, the lake is very quiet most of the time so you can just forget about the world for a little while. The water is incredibly warm and going for a swim after sitting in the hot sauna for a while is so refreshing. I've always been very into swimming, I was like married with our lake when I was a kid. 

And Luka is absolutely mad about water as well, she chases the air bubbles and splashes of water you get when you move your hand or foot in the water. Swimming can get quite dangerous with her if she's not told off, though. Her protective insincts just kick in and she swims after you, trying to get you to go to shore. This unfortunately means that she will claw you to absolute ribbons if you're not careful with her. 

The typical temperature of sauna is between 80-100 degrees. That's the comfortable range for me to sit in, some "hardcore" sauna fans can put up with the 120 degree heat. I just end up getting dizzy in that heat.

Oh and this picture was taken last night at 1am. I promise. The sun just doesn't really set during the summer, you could just go out in the middle of the night and still be able to see perfectly fine.

There's this big flour mill about 15 minute drive away from where I am. As far as I'm aware it's mostly (or completely) powered by water power, which is incredibly cool. They do also sell some handmade stuff, like jams and marmelades, sweets, honey.. I did end up getting some souvenirs for my other half and his family, but that shall remain a secret for now. ;)

I'm probably going to post every few days all week, just pile up a ton of pictures and post them like this, I'm just too lazy to write long essays about every picture I take. :D

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