Wellcome to get to know Finland and Finnishness, as well as the world of 80's and 90's childhood memories, dreams, dance, gymnastics, baking and other interesting topics. Jump along the dance girl's journey!
Look what I found yesterday when I was on a walk… Yes, a bumblebee. I would almost love to pet those fluffy bugs but maybe better that I didn’t..
Bumblebees (Bombus) is a genus of flying insects belonging to the genus Apidae, oneof the bee families. They have a sturdy, hairy body, and thanks to their large size, they are easily distinguishable from other insects. Bumblebees eat nectar and act as important insect pollinators for many plants. Bumblebee species are found on all continents except Antarctica.
MAIJA THE BEE
”Once upon a time, a completely unknown country, there lived a bee, which has long been told.
And the name of this bee was Maija, small pretty bee Maija. Maija flies to the world, wonders to see it. Here is today our friend Maija, small, brisk friend Maija. Everyone loves Maija. Maija tell us your story”.
When I was younger, I (like presumably many other children / young people) mixed a bumblebee and a bee. I have blamed Maija-Mehiläinen for this: a children’s program that I watched as a child.
Maija is a bee, but still a plump ball, so it looks more like a bumble-bee. I have wondered why a children’s program gives such erroneous learning to children? Anyway, I loved the program, and I still like its theme melody.
Virus situation in Finland has again eased a bit but this battle is certainly not over yet! For a moment I thought that I was safe when I received my first vaccine! Now, however, it has become clear that somehave fallen ill despite the first vaccine, some have even been hospitalized.
Restrictions on outdoor activities were just removed in Finland, and yet it appeared that this Delta variant easily adheres to the outdoors too. Fortunately I have been myself (even paranoid) careful. I also have a mask again for outdoor use, which I was already almost giving up.
YOUTUBE CHANNEL BY KAISLA(For Finnish speakers)
Tänään ajattelin esitellä uuden lempitubettajani kanavan, joka sopiimainiosti tähän stressaavaan ajanjaksoon rauhoittamaan mieltä. Jos sinunkin mielesi on levoton, etkä saa unta, tai kykene rentoutumaan kiireen, ja vallitsevan stressaavan tilanteen keskellä, tästä voisi olla apua.
Ainakin itse olen huomannut, että etenkin Kaislan päiväkirjavideoista saa ajatukset muualle, ja rauhoittuu mukavasti hänen pehmeää ääntä, ja mielenkiintoisia tarinoita kuunnellessa. Tulee heti parempi olo. Kokeile Kaislan videoita stressiä lievittämään!
Summer is at its most beautiful and at its brightest in Finland. We have had a Midsummer celebration going on yesterday and today. Many are at their summer cottages or with relatives having sauna, grilling, swimming, and enjoying the summer…
but the corona situation still does not ease. Today I panicked again for a moment after reading the new corona statistics because they were pretty high again. Apparently, infections from those returning from Russia to the European Football Championships are now starting to show up in the statistics. It was known that these football tourists will bring the virus here from Russia, where the situation is very bad. However, I hoped that this would not affect very much as vaccinations are progressing (more than half of population vaccinated once).
In addition, the heat here in the north should help. Usually viruses do not live here in the summer, in warm weather. I have been wondering if this could be due to the intense UV radiation from the sun in the north which destroys viruses …but these new virus variants apparently are even more resistant to UV radiation.
The forrest near our home where we were walking yesterday.
Now we forget for a moment this virus situation and go back a bit in time … or actually a little more. For today my purpose was to show you excerpts from my life 30 years ago when I was 11 years old.
So let’s go back in time to summer 1991 … and Midsummer of the same year which I spent at the summer cottage with my family. There always had a lot of program and I also had two good friends there: Sini and Sanna-Kaisa. I played with Sini’s brother Janne too and with Sini’s cousin: Risto.
Life was very different at the time. There was no internet, and no social media. However, writing was already close to my heart although I was no master writer at the time. In the early 90’s it was written mainly in the diary and to pen pals. (I also writed poems and stories to the desk drawer). These texts in todays post are straight from my first diary.
(*marked words or names are explained below)
We went to the summer cottage and there was no traffic jam. *Eila visited us.
We went to the traditional Midsummers *Bridge dances. We danced and grilled sausages. We bought many lotteries as well but we didn’t win. Eila, Jussi, Janne, *Anja and Keijo visited us.
Eila’s family visited us. I played with Janne on a ”ghost train”. We pushed each other alternately in strollers and was pushed from some terrible point or not really pushed on (but so close for example the dike) that it feels like falling. That becomes a terrible and wonderful feeling at the same time. Then we gatherer dropped from the stroller. Anja and Keijo visited us and then later *Veikko visited us when I was gonna go to sauna to *Terttu with my mom. After the sauna Terttu came to visit. Then Sanna-Kaisa and Pälvi came to visit and then Eila’s family came again.
Many guests visited us.
Many guests visited.
Sini had been at the wedding party in Helsinki, Pasila and stayed in Helsinki for several days. She was supposed to come back on wednesday or friday but she came already today. I was very surprised. This is where it all started again. I went to her *grandmother. We played school, broomstick, hide and seek and ”Nurkkakurttu”. At our cottage we jumped the skipping rope and twist and plyed with Barbie-dolls. We went to Sini’s grandmother again to eat and then we played ”Penkkipersis” and broomstick, played with Polly Pocket and wrote on each other’s backs and hands and played ”viivahippaa” (line tag) and ”Saarta” (island).
Sini came to our cottage at 9.40 am. We went to her grandmother and to sauna to my grandpa. Then we went to swimming to ”Koipijärvi” and again to sauna to Sini’s grandma.
I went to swimming with Eila, Risto and Sini and we also ate packed lunch.
I went to swimming.
Sini had bought a lovely dog plush toy. It was gray and it had a blue dress and yellow bone. I also bought one. There was only one left. It was yellow. I liked the blue one more but the yellow one was also pretty so I bought it. Risto bought one dog plush toy too but it was different not so cute. We got the toys at a discount. Risto’s dogs original price was about 70mk now it was less, don’t know how much. Mine and Sini’s dogs original price was 85mk and now the price was 59mk and 50 pennys. We went to Sini’s grandma to play with those.
*Eila -Sini’s and Janne’s mom.
*Bridge dance: dance on the old bridge in our summer cottage village where used to have traditional Midsummer dances. In Finland it is traditionally organized that kind of dances in the summer but the speciality in this bridge dance was that it was held on the bridge on the flow. It’s very beautiful place. The name of the place is: ”The Flows bridge as Virran silta”.
*Anja and Keijo was our familyfriends and Anja was like second grandma to me. (My real second grandma I’ve never seen, cause she died when she gave birth to my dad.)
*Veikko and Terttu -our summer neighbors by then. (Veikko passed away at 90’s.)
*Sni’s grandmother lived almost next door to our cottage. Sini often stayed (part of the time) at Grandma’s when our family was at the cottage.
There were a few excerpts from my diary, June 1991.
The world of an 11-year-old girl, so simple… and that is why it’s so beautiful…
Tell me if you want me to continue this text and I will.
In recent days there has again been a slight increase in covid cases (atleast here in the Uusimaa region). It’s a little worrying. However, more than half of Finns have already received the first vaccine and about 13% have received their second vaccine. I would have expected (or hoped) cases to remain very low. On the other hand, the cases have apparently been raised by cases from Russia where football European Championship-competitions are currently underway. Many canceled their trips, but surely many have also left to follow the competitions despite the very bad virus situation in Russia.
Finland is also participating in the competitions for the first time in history. We won our first match against Denmark 1-0 certainly only because an important Danish player: christian eriksen had a heart attack during the match and the Danish game got mixed up. Eriksen’s heart surgery was successful but his career is sadly over now.
A sporting event is also my actual topic today. It’s not related to football but to the Finland Gymnaestrada held three years ago in Turku, whereby the corona was not yet known and we gymnasts could enjoy each other’s company without fear. So, I participated in the event with my team. These moments are nice to remember in these difficult times, even if it is wistful.
I remember a hard workout during that few-day event. There was little free time. I remember how tired I was, (I slept poorly in a hotel as usual in foreign places) but I was still happy. I remember good conversations with my roommate and a visit with her to the Turku Historic Cathedral. I remember how my already deceased father called me every day and asked me to visit him. Although in every call I said that I was on a gymnastic trip in Turku, (and so my parents lived in Helsinki just like me), because of Alzheimer’s he just didn’t remember it. Also I remember a good team spirit and sunburn in black, sweatable outfits. Especially the actual show day was so hot that I was close to fainting on the field, waiting for our turn to performance. The wait was really long and I didn’t have any money or debit card with me. I had left those with my other stuff but luckily one wonderful co-performer was so fair that she bought me water from the kiosk next door that I would not faint before performing. The performance went well in the end. I miss these moments most from gymnastics now that I haven’t gotten to practice for a while.
Finally I will be free! On monday morning me and my spouce got our first vaccinations.I’m so happy of that!
Soon I can start living a more normal life again without constant fear which was already almost destroying me. Of course I can’t fully relax yet but I am much closer to that moment. Anyway, the situation here in Finland has made it easier with the summer and vaccinations. Today, there were only 6 new cases in Helsinki. I don’t remember when was the last time virus counts were equally small.
Monday’s vaccination day was exciting. We had been afraid all the time that there would be a lot of people in the place and that someone there would infect corona to us. We arrived on the ride of our friend. There was some queue on the outside and even more people inside. The vaccination itself in a small booth was rapid but after that each was directed to wait 15 minutes if you happen to get an allergic reaction. I thought my spouse is in the same hall where I was following the others but he was not visible. Someone in the hall coughed loudly all the time, even though if you have flu symptoms you should not even be vaccinated. Luckily I soon saw my spouse passing by in the hallway, outside the hall I was sitting. I ran after him and fortunately got out of the hall where the coughing woman was. There had been someone next to my spouse too who was constantly coughing and my spouse changed place. I heard the coughing voice still in the hallway where we were but there was a screen in between. Well maybe they had allergies or tobacco cough, don’t know about it…
After a while we began to feel a little bit weak. For a moment we feared it was a vaccine, that we had an allergic reaction but it went away as soon as it came. Probably it was only due to the heat cause the day was really hot. About a quarter later we set off for a walk home. The distance was almost four km (over 2mi). We would have taken the city bikes from a nearby bike station but for some reason we didn’t get the bikes to work. The bike screens stayed off mode and the push buttons required for the code did not work. So we walked all the way home (because we don’t want to use the public transport). At least we got a decent walk. The weather was good too, so it was quite nice to walk although the heat was a little exhausting.
At home, I noticed muscle pain in my left hand (vaccination hand). The pain was similar as after training but the next morning that pain was almost gone. Neither has had any other symptoms. Well, on Monday night, my head ached, but it was surely due to the thunder that started then. Thunder is usually caused by headaches, or maybe I just drink too little…
I can hardly wait for the second vaccine in August although, on the other hand, it is exciting because I have heard that the second Pfizer vaccine can cause worse symptoms than the first. Well, let’s see…
Now I try to start enjoying summer more. I hope you all can enjoy it too, whereveryou are!
I went for an evening walk last weekend. It was beautiful weather, and I wanted to smell the onset of summer. I didn’t even really remember what it feels like to breathe freely; decent fresh spring air. I have been wearing a mask for so long anywhere I go, although sometimes I have momentarily opened my mask from another loop, in a safe place. So I did now too when I was coming back home. I stopped to admire the beautiful sky. No one was nearby. I rubbed handsanitizer to my hands and opened my mask from the other side and the feeling was indescribably wonderful, now that all the scents of summer were already in the air. It was a really euphoric experience. I closed my eyes for a moment and enjoyed. The birds sang their songs. I could never have imagined that fresh air alone could feel so wonderful. Now that too is no longer taken for granted.
In reality, I was awakened by the ripple of conversation behind me. Some people were clearly coming my way. I quickly put my mask back on and left to home. People had appeared across the street too where there would have been another possible route home, so I straightened across the lawn, over a small fence to the yard area so as not to collide with anyone. (Today, I am even more afraid to bypass people because of the Indian virus variant and who knows when a new, even more contagious virus variant will come again)!
These little soothing moments are more important now than ever!
I just wish it will become more warmer weather (which would certainly also reduce the number of infections)…and…
I also wish everyone a wonderful and safe start to the summer!
Ok, the game is over and we have new winner of Eurovision Song Contest 2021 -after two years break-. The winner is Italy’s glam rock band: Måneskin. Finland’s ranking was sixth. It’s our second best result in proportion to the number of participants, so this Contest went well! (Today, there are many more participating countries than before).
Neither of the songs were my personal favorites, but at least for the Finnish song I could expect audience voices.Rock always has its own fan base, and the band (Blind Channel) is quite popular abroad (more popular than in Finland) and as I mentioned yesterday the song (chorus) is really catchy. We got well votesfrom the audience but we also got moderate points from the jury.
Finland’s first and so far the only win in ESC history was in 2006.
My personal favorites were: Bulgaria, France, Austria (eliminated in the semifinals), Georgia (eliminated in the semifinals)… and also pretty nice catchy song was in Greece and in Cyprus (which sounded likeLady Gaga. Also singer looked a little bit like her.) Anyhow I didn’t like the idea of this song. I don’t know who would like to give herself to devil… 😱 Not very good message!
From the link below you can find the total results and listen all songs.
In an hour, the exciting Eurovision final begins. After a year break, it has been nice to watch the classic European Song Contest again.
Finland made its way from Thursday’s semi-final to tonight’s finals. Since then this contagious earworm has been playing in my head. It is already time for the Finlands previous and only historical victory (2006), when Lord’s catchy rock song (”Hard Rock Hallelujah”) took us to victory, so I think it would be our turn to win again…(By the way, Lordi will perform in tonight’s final).
However, there are many really good songs in the competition, so it may be that this slightly Lord-like rock song isn’t going through this time…
We have this saying in Finland after winning something: ”see you at the market place!” but this time if we really will win, pleace DON’T MEET IN THE MARKET, right! (Because of the Corona).
Where were you at the time? I like these videos where you can look to the past like it’s happening now. There, people still walk freely side by side, unaware of corona.
Time travel back to 1997
In June of the same year, this single was released:
My spouse played The Verve’s music one day, and it was like a time travel 24yrs. backwards. The Verve and this song was my favorite back then. I had birthdays a while ago and it is a good time to return to the youth years for a while. (By the way, watch how people collide with each other in the video. Who wants to collide to strangers anymore?)
1997 was a good year.I started high school back then. Even before I went to high school, I had decided to make friends there for myself because I didn’t really have good friends at that time (I had one friend outside my school). I had been pretty lonely for a while. However, I realized it was my own fault because I had been so withdrawn and passive because of my tenderness. At that school, it was too late to change things. Groups of friends had already been formed, and I would no longer have been included in them. That’s why I was glad to have a fresh start that high school offered me. There I confirmed my decision, and I made a lot of new friends, two of whom are still my good friends! In addition, I remember the great Stockholm trip with my annual rate.
The common joy of Thursday evenings for me and my mother was the twists and turns of the drama series ”Kotikatu”, which we watched regularly for many years. From the link below you can read more about the Kotikatu series and watch the theme of the program.
For a few years now, my life had brought content also my cheerleading hobby, where the summer match season had begun just before the release of the single ”Bitter Sweet Symphony”.Summer was always my favorite season, for training too, as match days were great moments. Unique experiences that cannot be experienced anywhere other than on the edge of the field. The feeling when you’ve been standing for two to three hours encouraging your team along with the audience, and your team is winning. Nothing wins it! (Except maybe the field performances of flow gymnastics!). By the way an American football team that I cheered won the championship that year!
That year also saw the premiere of the legendary film Titanic, which I went to watch with a friend. From the final scenes of the film, I remember how someone’s phone rang right in the middle of a tense event. She or he did get a few comments from the audience.
Death of princess Diana
From -97, I also vividly remember the death of Princess Diana, what then touched deeply. My mother and I were home when the TV was open and we heard there was an extra news broadcast coming. We waited excitedly for what had happened. As the news began, it became clear that Diana had died in a car accident.
When this album was released in September, I bought it right away. Here’s another beautiful hit from the album with great words. The song mentions aging. It really scares me too, year after year more. I just had my 41 birthdays, and every birthday today is just an inevitable reminder of how time passes, and I grow old. I was thinking about getting old by the time I bought the record, but still it felt like a very distant idea at the time. From something that only comes sometime in years to come. Now it has become much closer, and it has become a more concrete thing, (perhaps also because my father passed away and my mother has also become weaker / more fragile). Time is running so fast already that I don’t even dare to think about what’s ahead in 10 or 20 years.
Finnish, well-known journalist: Maria Veitola summed it up a few years ago: As long as your age is thirty something, you can still somehow think you are young. After it is forty something, you can’t anymore! Now I have experienced it first hand.
As many of you may remember: Manic Street Preachers’ album ”This Is My Truth Tell Me Yours” was released in August 1998. It went straight to number one on the British and Finnish album charts. I bought that cd myself too and it’s still great! Here is the link to the first track of the album: The Everlasting.
In 1998, I turned 18 and under Finnish law I had now reached the age of majority. As a birthday present, I received the first cell phone of my life: the Nokia 5110, which was new and great at the time. What could have been a better gift for a young woman on that age at the time…
In high school, I started second grade, and I became senior student. I also participated senior dances in the dress I borrowed from my good friend’s big sister, and I was involved in a cruise of the senior students.
The year 1998 also commemorates Monica Lewinski and the sensation over her relationship with Bill Clinton.
9.5. Eurovision Song Contest in 1998 was won by the Israeli legendary Dana International with its great song: Diva. Finland was represented by Edea with the song: Ava. I also thought this song was great, and for once the singer had a great voice, even though it didn’t succeed despite high expectations. Below is the link to my blog post of ”best eurovision songs” where you can listen for example the above-mentioned songs.
On May 30, 1998, the Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Art, which has become one of the landmarks in the center of Helsinki, was opened. I have not been a big fan of contemporary art in general, but I have to admit that there have been some pretty great exhibitions at Kiasma. (You can see a picture of it in the post I linked below).
In addition our American football team (which I cheered) won the championchip again!
I hope there are still many good years left, as long as this pandemic is over…
Matti Kalevi Siitonen ”Fredi” was a popular Finnish entertainment artist and musician.He had his own recognizable singing voice and the songs he sang were largely delicate, very beautiful, and melodic songs. Many of those became beloved evergreens.
Fredi released 13 studio albums, several collections and singles, of which more than 177,000 copies have been sold beyond the gold record limit. Fredi represented Finland twice in the Eurovision Song Contest.
Fredi is also remembered for the singing and entertainment quartet: ”Kivikasvot” (stone faces). The same line-up also made a show entertainment program with the name: ”Kivikasvot show” which was really popular in the 70s.
This evergreen hardly needs demonstrations. A beautiful song. Specially I like these finnish lyrics. This song became even closer to me after my father left. (This Finnish text is slightly different from the original, and here the father’s passing is mentioned). The idea of loneliness is the same but the perspective is different, at least more touching and close to me. It may also be that I internalize the message better when it is sung in Finnish, but at least I personally feel that there is more depth in this finnish version. Here’s my free translation.
Alone again (Naturally)
When my memories take over me, I see my whole childhood
How I was scared at night and under the blankets I pressed my head
I still remember when I quietly sobbed, every bump was an abomination
And I felt a great longing, a longing to come
In the evenings when I closed my eyes
I dream of something far away like going to another world
And only later I understood all that
Alone again, naturally
When father died I was left alone, every night I saw mother cries
Like a cold and exuding emptiness I felt next to me for a while
So in vain did I seek the word of consolation
Every sigh, every consolation was a guest at the time insignificant
Everyone ones have to give up a loved one, the wounds only remain
I understood all that in tears of grief
Alone again, naturally
Everyone is lonely here, I quietly bend to my destiny
I fall into its arms, so alone and depressed
I searched oblivion in vain from you
I saw everything slipping and I felt the mundane emptiness in my chest
And in my mind again, I saw my former life
And I knew that all of us loses once out all beauti
Only longing remains
I guess the purpose of life, I sharked here in vain
I missed the answer
When emotion warmest ends to tears
Alone again, naturally
One of Fred’s best-known songs: ”The Third Line back”, has also been an ever-beloved piece for me, too. By the way, The Third line is a street in Kallio, Helsinki.