March 10-13: Finland and the Finnish

Trip Start Sep 02, 2010
Trip End May 13, 2011

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Hotel Stadion

Flag of Finland  , Southern Finland,
Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Well I have about an hour right now before I have to leave Versailles for Italy. I'll be gone until May 3 so I thought I would try and catch everyone up on here as much as I could.
It is now March 10.  There had been an optional Structures field trip to Amsterdam planned from Thursday to Sunday.  Since I had already been to Amsterdam, me and five other girls decided we wanted to go to Finland instead...Helsinki. It was just getting really nice in France. It was 60 degrees and sunny the day before we left. Well, on thursday, the weather in Finland was 20 degrees, cloudy, and snowing. Just a few things I thought were interesting in Finland before I start getting all excited with too many details. When greeting someone, the Finnish say "Hey!" (spelled 'He' or something). It would catch us by surprise when we would walk in to a restaurant and the people would say "Hey!"......uh.......Hey!.....
St. Pertersburg, Russia was only about an hour ferry ride away. A very tempting side trip but somewhat pricey.
 Our hostel was an old part of the Olympic Stadium where the players had their locker rooms and things like that.
It was cold...very cold. It snowed almost everyday we were there.
Any water you see in the pictures is of the Baltic Sea.
Theyre known for their fish....and Reindeer.
The Finnish thing to do in the winter, and its said to relieve stress, is strip down to your underwear, jump into the freezing cold Baltic, then get out and sit in a hot tub. It was a very tempting idea also, but we passed on that one. haha
Day 1: We arrived in Helsinki around 9PM. They were an hour ahead of France. It was about a 3 hour plane ride. We got to our Hostel by taxi then ventured out in the town. The downtown section of Helsinki was pretty far, so we took the tram all the time. The first night we ended up at a place that had a live band, where we had hot wings and Koff Beer. (Koff might mean beer in Finnish, never figured that one out, or its Finland's brand, not sure).
Day 2: We went to a hostorical museum in town and walked around and saw a bunch of Alvar Aalto's buildings, the famous Finnish architect. All of the guys in Finland are blonde....and very cute! haha.  We just did alot of walking around today. Walked to the Baltic which was frozen and this section had a bunch of huge ice chunks. There were a bunch of huge cruise ships, some of which would take you to Russia. We ended up at a bar/club that night and hung out for a couple hours.
Day 3: We had a tour of Alvar Aalto's house and studio. We had lunch at a cute Finnish place where I had some sort of pastry looking meat sandwich. Finland is also big on fish, and here they had Salmon soup which was pretty tastey. We also walked on the Baltic. It was so cold it was completely frozen solid. And everyone was out on it doing some sort of wind snow surfing on top of the sea. There were also a bunch of ice fishing holes. Tonight, we went out to a really nice restaurant and I had Sauteed Reindeer. It was realllly good. It was a cross between Beef Bourguignon and Beef Jerky.  Very good. We ended tonight at a club that was pretty cool.
Day 4: Today, our goal was to get to some house, I don't remember the name. But, we were given directions to two different places and we followed the wrong ones. We ended up at a Cross Country Ski area. And since we only had about 3 hours to kill, me and two other girls decided we would stay. It was alot of fun! I've only been normal skiing once, never Cross Country Skiing. We only had about an hour and a half to ski though since they closed at 4pm if you rented, but it was a very tiring hour. A great way to end our trip in Finland!!
We got on the plane and arrived in France around 10pm.

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