It’s a living thing

Live music that is. I love live music, probably because as a teen I never got to go to any live concert, not even free ones. With my first long-time-boyfriend I managed to see some Finnish club live music nights such as Kingston Wall (my then-bf knew the Walli brothers from school) but then there was a long time I couldn’t go, kids were small and so on. Around these last ten years or so I’ve been going to live concerts again. One of the first was 30 Seconds to Mars which is still one of my faves and I also managed to see Prince perform here in Helsinki which was my dream come true, I was (still am) his long time fan from 1984.

Now though I think that two massive gigs is quite enough for one week.

Last Friday I and my friend Mareetta took a plane to Gothenburg, Sweden, to see a concert by three of Sweden’s top musicians from the 80’s. They used to have solo careers but then started a project together called GES in the 90’s, then went on a pause but reunited for a friend’s birthday party and now they made a tour together. There were 11 000 people in the Scandinavium in Gothenburg and it was so much fun! I even remembered some of the lyrics to some old 80’s songs in Swedish. Here is a compilation of their previous gig in Stockholm as I couldn’t find anything from Youtube. If you like there’s some videos in Instagram at GES.se

Yesterday I was on a totally different kind of concert here in Helsinki. One of the most beloved and gifted Finnish rock musicians Ismo Alanko had his 40-year-long-career celebration, 9 concerts at a club which had been postponed from last year. I had tickets to one night, some people had tickets to all nine concerts… I’d be plain dead after such a marathon. I danced so much my legs were literally killing me all of the last night, luckily I had my osteopathy session in the morning. Underneath is the song from the beginning of the gig. If you know where to look you can see a certain person dancing in front of a taller woman (that tall woman is my friend Heidi, she’s right in the middle).

I’m going to write another post about the trip to Gothenburg tomorrow.

Fall holiday’s over

I’ve been on holiday this week. As I work in the City Education organization we’ve got the same holiday schedule as schools and so I took the whole week off and it’s been nice. I haven’t done much but that’s all right too.

View from my kitchen window

Last weekend me, hubby and youngest one took a long awaited cruise to Stockholm. We have these huge ferries that sail (run?) from Helsinki to Stockholm and back during the night and then you’ve got a day in the city there, for us Finns it’s Stockholm and for Swedes it’s Helsinki. They are called shopping cruises bc the ferry has a huge tax free shop and people buy a lot of alcohol from the ship. We buy a lot of candy and some cosmetics. I linked our ship Silja Serenade there, it’s been about ten years since we last took a Silja Line ship bc we’ve been using Viking Line since hubby did some work for them and got rewards.

Helsinki in horizon

In Stockholm we visited the Abba The Museum in Djurgården, it’s such an awesome place for one who has grown with their music. After the museum we took a ferry to Gamla Stan (Old City) which has one of the best scifi bookshops in Europe and it’s on our ’visit every time’-list. I bought only three books this time and one dvd. Oh and a wall calendar for next year. Then we walked to the newer city centre, the main shopping street has a nice candy store where you can buy traditional Swedish polkagrisar (= peppermint candy).

Since I had already told hubby I wanted to have a coffee (fika) at Mr. Cake cafeteria we went there and luckily managed to enter at a time the queue wasn’t very long (a short while afterwards the queue went out of the door to the small square). From the cafeteria we walked back to the ferry and were there in good time, about an hour before the departing time, which was nice.

Hubby had Monday off work which was nice. After we had come home and let the cat out we unpacked our bags. Middlest son had left on Sunday to Tikkakoski for a flying thingy and came home on Tuesday. On Tuesday I did a short walk in the forest as we had walked about 15 km during the day in Stockholm and my legs were a bit stiff. On Wednesday it rained all day and I read all day, I finished ’The Shadow of what was lost’ by James Islington and felt sorry I had even started the book. I can’t recommend it to anybody. Oh and I did bake cinnamon buns, they were good.

On Thursday my friend Mareetta and I drove to Tammisaari again. On our way there we did an expedition to a funny little shop called ’The Greenhouse effect’ which has all kinds of awesome stuff to buy and then we drove to Fiskars village. We had a very nice lunch in Tammisaari and then drove back via Fagervik (it dates back to the 17th century) and Kirkkonummi new library, only we didn’t go in this time. It looks like I’m going with Mareetta to Gothenburg in mid-November, it’ll be nice.

On Friday we had horrible weather, rain and very windy. I had my osteopathy therapy session in the city centre and then I met youngest son in the Eastern shopping mall, he needed new clothes and he wanted to buy new cell phone with his gift money from the confirmation day. In the evening we watched couple of episodes of Buffy with him.

View to Tammisaari historical centre

Tomorrow I’m putting some bulbs on the ground so we’ll have tulips and crocuses next spring too.

Forest therapy

Today I managed to get to the forest again. I find it essential for my mental well-being to see the trees up close and breathe the free unpolluted air. Last weekend we were at my other godson’s confirmation party and it was nice too but since it was a rainy weekend I didn’t mind not getting into the forest.

I was lucky to find a lot of yellowfeet, in short time I had a decent amount of them which was great since I had a minor headache that blew up into a migraine. I had hoped it’d gone away in the forest but it didn’t. I think it’s partly due to the yin-yoga where we did some exercises to stretch the area between shoulder blades and I also had my osteopathy treatment on Friday morning.

I finished watching the Good doctor S3 yesterday evening. I must say that even thou I liked the series it got too syrupy and the characters begun to annoy me a bit. Now I’m continuing with Lucifer and then I probably continue with Bloodline which was also annoying, it started so slow I almost left it.

I went to movies to see the new Dune and it was amazing. I really liked it but I liked the old one too (I still have the soundtrack on LP). The cast and music were good but the photography was beautiful, it reminded me a lot of Tale of Tales. It was weird to be in the movie theater with restrictions minimized to one free chair between groups and they will be lifted in the beginning of October totally.

On Friday the post services finally delivered my RA auctions last item, thank you Jane. Since one of the coasters was already picked by a friend you’ll only get to see two of them here 🙂

Next Friday I’m having a day off and if the weather is nice I’ll be going with my friend Mareetta to pick mushrooms in Nuuksio forest. Now I’m going to watch tv and knit and pet Sirius.

September started

I’ve now been a month back to work and it feels like I had never been on holiday. Well, mostly. I don’t know why but I feel a bit blue, I think it may be the current situation and also that the summer has gone and even the weather is very fall-like already. Cold and wet and it doesn’t feel good in my joints.

Last Saturday we celebrated youngest one’s confirmation. We had most of my siblings, some godparents and some friends over and it was nice to see everyone. As usual we had counted for more people to come so we had cake all week. Also the flowers are still beautiful, except roses that I put to dry since youngest one wanted. I have a nice fragrance here where I sit typing this.

My pilates lessons have started and I’ve been to an osteopath, she does wonders to me and I always almost fall asleep while there. She is lovely young lady and loves cats 🙂 I also enrolled to Yin yoga classes, I hope it’ll be good for me.

Since I haven’t updated in a month I think here’s also a short video I shot at the cottage. I was sitting on the jetty/small pier in the lake shore and this little Mourning cloak (Nymphalis antiopa) comes to sit on me. It was tickly.

RA 50 auctions

As Guylty has very generously given out in her blog post I’ll be donating the cd-audiobook The Martian invasion of Earth for the auction. I had thought of donating it already last year but forgot but now it’ll be perfect for the big 5-0 celebrations.

This post is mainly just to let you know that the cd-box includes two cd’s and is in pristine condition. I’ve only unwrapped it and copied the cd’s (because I like to listen audiobooks on my phone when I’m scrapping or doing house chores). Of course you can stare at Richard’s pic on the cover while listening if that is more your thing.

Below are the cast members. Richard and Lucy Briggs-Owen were very good as were the others too. A very enjoyable listening even if you’re not a fan of HG Wells.

Richard Armitage (Herbert)

Lucy Briggs-Owen (Amy)

Hywel Morgan (Curate)

Ewan Bailey (Daniel)

Richard Derrington (Ogilvy)

Helen Goldwyn (Agatha)

Christopher Weeks (Edward)

Benedict Briggs (Boy)

Nicholas Briggs (Martians / First Officer)

So there you go! Happy bidding!

Maritime museum and movies

This week we were expecting a bit cooler weather so we decided to take youngest son to the Maritime centre Vellamo in Kotka on Monday and it was fun.

Kotka is a city near Helsinki, about 90 minute drive from our house and I’ve never been there in all my life. My mom’s grandmother had a workmen’s dinery there in the early 20th century which is my closest connection to the said city. Kotka used to have a lot of paper and pulp mills and also an important sea port which is still one of it’s biggest employers. BTW Kotka means eagle in English.

We had first thought to visit Vellamo and then walk in the city which is now famous of the renewed parks, it’s said people drive annually to Kotka just to visit their parks but since it took us five hours to go through the Maritime centre we decided to save the parks for a later date.

The Maritime centre Vellamo was huge and very interesting. There was a nice exhibition of the great battle in Svensksund in the Russo-Swedish war in the late 18th century. We also got to visit an old ice breaker Tarmo and the Finnish maritime history including old cruise boats like Finnjet. My brother Kimmo was an ordinary seaman on a large Finncarriers carrier before he changed career due to raising a family so it was interesting from that point of view also.

In the museum there was a lot of all kinds of ships and such and of course there was also a part of Estonia shipwreck. Youngest son asked about it and I noticed it still makes me cry to remember so hubby got to explain the disaster to him. You can watch videos in YT if you want to know more, just put ’Estonia 1994 news’ on the search bar.

On Tuesday I had a meeting with my osteopath and it was awesome. Later I walked to the city centre to meet Heidi and we went to movies to see Mads in Drunk. It’s a story of four teachers who decide to do an empirical test based on a study about a human functioning best in 0.5 ‰ drunk. I think you can guess how well that goes down.

I’ll embed the last scene of the movie underneath just because Mads was a dancer before his acting career and the scene reminds me of the old fandom phrase ’You can take a man out of dance but you can’t take the dance out of a man’.

Then on Friday I took youngest son to the movies to see Black widow and it was much better than I had thought. Of course one of the highlights was to hear one of the Widows speak Finnish too. It was fun I must admit.

Middlest son got a call from his Captain and he now has place in the ND Uni and will eventually become a fighter pilot! Yay! So he’ll be living here with us next winter and then he’ll go where they tell him to. I’m glad he’ll be able to do what he always wanted to as work, it helps.

Tomorrow me and eldest and youngest are leaving for summer cottage for the next ten days. Hubby has to go back to work and middlest son maybe comes for a couple of days, I don’t know and neither does he. This time we are leaving Sirius the Cat home since I fear some fox or supikoira (European raccoon) will eat her. Also she doesn’t like car trips and we all know that (eww).

Here’s a pic of Helsinki from Tuesday when I walked from Kallio to city centre. The big red brick house on the far right side is the University’s Education theory building, for the teachers-to-be. The left side bank is called Säästöpankinranta (Savings bank shore) because in the late 19th century there used to be a very popular bar and the reason for the name was that poor students could drink there for credit. Hence the name 🙂

Artsy Friday

We are having a heatwave at the moment and in order to have something else to do than sit at home eating ice cream and sweating I planned a movie night with my friends Heidi and Kristiina.

Since I was going to meet them at a cafe before the movie I thought to go city centre a bit earlier and see the Repin art exhibition in our National gallery before meeting them. I had to queue for about 15 minutes bc I didn’t want to buy the ticket beforehand as we have a thing called The Museum card here (you pay an annual fee and get to see as many museums as you like, to cover the annual fee you must visit about four exhibitions). I only took couple of photos of my fave paintings and walked through the exhibition in 30 minutes.

You can browse the other art works in the exhibition here: https://ateneum.fi/en/exhibitions/repin/

At the cafe we shared our latest news like that I got through my exams with flying colours (I was quite certain I had failed) and then we went to see Cruella. It was very good. I had expected something else so it was a very nice surprise. Of course great actors, i. e. Mark Strong 😎, and both female lead Emmas’ among others and the costumes, music and charming doggies. All in all a very good movie! Go see it it you can. We had great time and enjoyed greatly our first movie after November.

That was my artsy Friday. I had good time 🙂

Today we’ve had hottest day this summer, +31c degrees in shadow. Hubby has been driving me to swim in the sea and so far the blue-green algae is not yet bothering us. It’s been wonderful. As the beach doesn’t have boxes to lock one’s things into while swimming Hubby has been watching my stuff as he doesn’t like to swim in the ocean here 🙂

Lunch dates and road trips

The beginning of my summer holidays has been busy. I’ve met friends over lunches and dinners and had lovely massages. I’ve also been swimming both in the Baltic sea and the public pool. We’ve had great weather, sunny and over 24 C degrees. Me like.

We celebrated Midsummer just at home. I bought five kilos of strawberries to put in the freezer for winter. We also ate about three kilos before that, the strawberries are so good now and they are all ripening now. I haven’t frozen strawberries for years but it’s a kind of civic duty here and people discuss where you can find the cheapest berries.

I’ve also seen some art exhibitions.

On Monday I, hubby and youngest son visited the Serlachius museums in Mänttä which has a Banksy exhibition. I reserved our entrance in good time already back in May. Since it’s an 3-hour-drive I was sure to get us booked in the afternoon and it was a good decision, we got to sleep and eat breakfast in peace without rushing (well almost.. teens you know) and then had a coffee break on the way. The exhibition was free and it was quite nice. We also took a round around the other exhibitions there and enjoyed them too.

We drove back via hubby’s childhood summer cottage but since it was already a bit late we didn’t go visiting his uncle. Besides hubby has such horrible memories of the place he was happy just to see it from the roadside 🙂

Today I went for a lunch with my friend Heidi. We were going to see an exhibition at the AmosRex museum but then we just browsed the shop and continued to the Helsinki City Art Museum (HAM) nearby. It was nice, the free side had some Tove Jansson’s works and the paid ticket side had some interesting art made by Katharina Grosse.

We were both a bit tired so it was a bit short day today. I had a osteopathy massage me yesterday and he found some nice sore spots in my legs. Last week he did my cheek muscles..

Some piccies underneath.

Here’s a song for you too. I quite like her voice.

Summer!

Today was my last day at work before summer leave and boy is it needed!

Last week we had a tad of drama at home as youngest son was about to leave for Lapland for his confirmation hiking camp and his best friend said he won’t come on Monday. They were due to leave on Tuesday morning at 6am. On Tuesday morning I go to wake youngest son and he says he’s been thinking all night that he won’t go since BFF can’t attend and I say that it’s not an option anymore, that now he just has to jump so off he goes. I was a bit worried I must say but today he came back and he’s had so much fun and made new friends and the hills were awesome and so on. So I was glad I pushed him to go. They also had awesome weather so he is quite sun tanned now.

Also last week at work we notice the clockwork machine is odd.. It’s been counting our hours wrong all WINTER (since last August) and only now someone realized it. Then we get an e-mail, it says I have about 200 hours of time uncounted! Geez I was a bit worried. Then my bosses say they are trying to find the error in the system with HR and I e-mail my workplace steward who is very concerned and with her support the bosses and HR do the clearing a bit more speedily. Today we receive a message that due to a mistake made last summer (when our contracts were updated after a two-year agreement done by the employer and the trade unions) mine and my colleagues hours were updated by wrong contract so we need to go through all of the dates since August. Luckily that can be done after summer holidays.

Yesterday I got my braces off! I’m quite glad of the result and today I had a consultation with my own dentist Kai so we can plan what to do next. Some of my crowns are a bit worn out and the plan was to change them but Kai said he’ll need to replace about five crowns and my corner teeth need some work done too. So the project getting my occlusion fixed continues.

My studies are finally about to finish, the final exam is on next Monday. I’m glad I did the essays in good time and now I have four and a ½ days to read three thick books in English about freedom of speech and social media. Yay. I’m so done.

Some piccies underneath, mostly from my garden. Hope you enjoy.

Also a suitable song by Lenny Kravitz since I have five days til summer. Boy I miss live music, Lenny was awesome ❤

Day tripper

Yeah! Me and my friend Mareetta did a Sunday trip to a nearby city called Lahti today. We left at 10 am and I just got home an hour or so ago. We had fun day.

First we visited a second hand store and then an outlet shop of an Finnish brand where I found one nice t-shirt and a light skort (skirt and shorts combination I really like, awesome for i.e. bicycling). Then we drove to the city and had a nice dinner at a local restaurant and afterwards we did some light shopping at a department store next door. From there we drove to a shopping mall a bit further since they had a lovely waffle cafe. After that we were about to drive home but decided to take a turn at the lakeside in the city next to the famous ski jumping hills. You may have heard of a Finnish ski jumper Matti Nykänen, these were his home grounds.

Since it’s been a holiday week again (a day off on Thursday) the motorway was so packed with people coming home from the summer houses that we decided to drive back via the old highway and it was nice. We watched the local houses and farms and enjoyed the scenery.

On other news; I’ve enrolled to my last Communications Science course which is a bout the freedom of speech and it’s okay I guess but so much writing. I need to write a paper of the lectures after I’ve listened to them and also I must read five books, of two of them I need to write a paper of and three will be questioned in an exam. Whoo boy. I think I took a too large bite with this one. Well, at least the summer holidays will be appreciated.

Last Tuesday I was getting my braces tightened again and the dentist said I’ll get them off on mid-June right before my summer holidays. On my last day at work (the next Wednesday after I’ve got the braces off) I’ll meet with my own dentist and we’ll plan what to do next. I hope I’ll get everything fixed during the summer, it’d be wonderful. The money I saved during this pandemic by not travelling will be put to good use.

Youngest son is going to his confirmation camp on early June, it’s a hike in Lapland. He wasn’t very happy when I said he needs to go but it seems he’s adapting to the thought. His best friend is coming to the same camp so it’s alright. On Friday I took him to shop all the necessary stuff, i.e shell jacket and trousers, woollen set of underwear etc. I think he was most happy of the new Marttiini knife he’ll need there.

I guess this is all for now so have a nice Sunday evening and awesome next week! Here is Sirius sleeping.