Friday, October 28, 2011
Me olimme Helsingissä / Vi var i Helsingfors / We were in Helsinki
I went to Helsinki this past week to take care of some paperwork at the US Embassy. Here's what Helsinki looks like:
Driving in Helsinki is not fun. Which is why I wasn't driving. Most of the roads in the city are two way but then there are giant train tracks in the middle separating them. So in most places it's impossible to turn left and absolutely impossible to turn around if you miss a turn. Plus, some of the lanes on some of the roads are actually on top of the train tracks so you always wonder if there is a train behind or in front of you to watch out for.
Fall weather is almost over and winter weather approaches, snow has been in Lapland for over a month now, Finland is lowering the speed limits all over the country to ,winter speeds, and soon drivers will have to switch to their winter tires. It's already below 0 C most nights and not much warmer during the day. Novita magazine already came out with their winter issue, while I'm sure in the US winter knitting magazines won't be out for some time. Fall colors here start out orange and then switch to yellow and then that's it. Occasionally there is a red or brown but those are quite rare. The birch leaves have already turned and then fallen to the ground, so now all around are bare bark birch trees.
After Helsinki we stopped by IKEA in Vantaa to pick up a few things while we were in the area.
I am always amused by the IKEA in Finland because everything is in Finnish and Swedish. But it's not exotic because those are the two national languages so everything is in Finnish and Swedish anyway, from street signs to food and drink, etc. I do enjoy the Finnish accent when they try to pronounce the names of items in Swedish. Also interesting is that Helsinki has it's own dialect and words that it uses so I enjoyed walking through the store and hearing those.
The first thing when we walked into the showroom that we saw was an IKEA sewing machine.
Don't get excited, it's not real, IKEA does not make or sell sewing machines. I got a kick out of it anyway.
Thanks for reading!
ruska - autumn colors
isä/faija (finnish/finnish dialect)