A week ago we were busy packing, doing laundry, and cleaning. The two days between the drive back from Namibia and leaving for Finland were packed with packing and farewells. Call it denial or whatever, I refused to organise any farewells for myself, but for Talky and his friends we did. The last night was filled with laughter, hugs, and a few tears. Until we meet again!
So now we are back in Helsinki. I’ve gotten back to the very Finnish way of being busy: if a Finn asks you “How are you?” the correct answer is busy or really busy or awfully busy. Otherwise there is something seriously wrong with you. So I’m relearning being busy. Just kidding, not really. After South Africa getting things such as residency and social security sorted out is a walk in the park. In South Africa getting one thing done takes on average seven days. In Finland you get seven things done in one day.
This is what has happened so far:
We arrived in Helsinki with style in business class. Didn’t pay for it, but did enjoy skipping Finns having their free morning beers in economy.
We’ve seen the sun. Occasionally. We’ve learned +20 in Helsinki actually is hot. No down jackets or jeans needed.
We’ve enjoyed loooong hot showers and tried to unlearn “if it’s yellow let it mellow”.
One of our first visits was paid to a bicycle shop. Now we all have brand new bicycles. By the way, my old had been “taken away”. Stolen? No such thing ever happened to me in dangerous South Africa!
Colours gold and blue have changed to grey and green. Even the sea here is green!
We still don’t know which school Talky is going to attend next Thursday. He had a test yesterday with all the Asian “competitors” brought to the test by their tiger moms. So it might very well be that he’ll, in addition to catching up academics, be soon learning a new language to read and write: Finnish.
Talky has once again proven his unbeatable and inspiring resilience. Making new friends. No problem. Not knowing which school to go to next week. No problem. Doing sports in the rain. No problem. Well, the latter was a bit of a problem. Actually a big problem. “They made us run in the mud!”
We are so not geared to the weather. After almost five years in a country where rain cancels everything it’s going to take some serious shopping. What kind of shoes are supposed to be worn when it rains?
We all have ID numbers and can operate as normal human beings. Pure delight.
We’ve eaten plenty of blueberries, salmon, and cheese that tastes something else than cardboard.
We “organised” a “parkrun” on Saturday at 8am. There were three of us. Good things take time?
Below some random photos. Can you spot:
– a Finnish “wall”?
– a Finnish school?
– the busiest cycle lane in Helsinki?
– a “parkrun”?
– playing Pokemon Go?
– 130 kg of luggage?