Sunday, November 27, 2011

Rauma Day 017

Wow! it's been 17 days since I laid my feet on Rauma's ground! And, my apologies, I've been procrastinating to post updates on my Finnish life. My project at Uotila school has given me unexpected challenges, I've been stressed out. 

Rauma is getting ready for Christmas, and there were lots of happenings on Saturday morning, like Children's choir and Santa's parade. So, I set my alarm to 9am, but the stress has given me insomnia and apparently I slept through my alarm. Duh! I was really looking forward to see the traditional "gnomes' march" at the market after the Santa parade!! So.... I was very bitter when I found out it was almost noon when I woke up. 

But, it was such a rare sunny day, I decided to head downtown regardless.

Here are Raumar's two bikes stationed in the backyard. The red bike is much higher than the green, but long story short, I couldn't find key to the green bike, so I started riding the red one. Now, I have both keys, but I'm already used to ride to red bikes, so here I am with the red bike. Plus, the red beret is so cute on this red bike! (What a great idea for a warm and facy seat cover! Thanks to Hannele ^_^)

There are so many ducks in this river. And time to time, I could spot people standing on this dock fishing. 

I love this bike path. With a river along the road. However, it's a bit scary at night because Rauma's evenings can be pitch dark. 

I normally ride to get to a point B from point A. 
Saturday was so sunny, and I'm already late for the gnome's parade, so I decided to enjoy my ride. And, I found a lovely little bridge that I never noticed. 

My lonesome but joyful picture on this lovely Saturday afternoon.

ok! a close-up. :)
I was about to leave, but found some thing very very odd around the bench. Can you tell me what they are?!!!

I think they are result of: 
1. A pack of wolves were playing around this bench last night.
2. Someone with a very very big hairy white dog was here brushing its fur last night.

I saw a red fox on Thursday in the neighborhood, like two houses next to mine, so I think it can really be answer #1. What do you think?

There are christmas lights installed in downtown. I just realized there is a little santa in this picture! haha. 

Bread truck in the market. The market was about to close when I arrived. I will have to come much earlier next Saturday. 

 I can't wait for Hubby to arrive so that we could buy these together. :)

Now, some storefront pictures. It seems like those long red gnome hats are everywhere in Finland. 

While walking on the street, I saw people peeking on someone's house. It's the little place squished between two stores. Can you spot it? It's got three keyholes to peek through.

I wondered what's in there? O_o Can you take a guess? 

There was a little plaque with a date 2008 on it. I will get informed about this curious installation, and let you know soon. :) 
nähdään vielä! (see you later)

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Rauma Day 010

Some of you already know that on last Tuesday, I had my real "Finnish experience" by going to a sauna where I dipped my body in a lake when it was -2°C outside. I want to show you this sauna's facility as it was designed by Alvar Aalto, an infamous Finnish architect and designer whose work includes architecture, furniture, textiles, and glassware. 

This sauna is called Jokisauna, which means river sauna. It's located in Kauttua, about 40 km east of Rauma. This town is known for paper mills, and this sauna was originally built for its workers as sauna and laudry facilities. Nowadays, it serves general public with it's two saunas (women's and men's), a meeting room, an art gallery, and a design shop.

Everything found inside is designed by Alvar Aalto. I'm bad with names, especially with architects,so Alvar Aalto didn't really ring a bell, but once I stepped inside, I soon recognized many items. 

Floor lamp. 

The Aalto vases. (deigned with his wife) It's also known as the Savory Vase because it was custom designed for the Savory restaurant in Helsinki. 

The Aalto Tea Cart and chair. 
Sorry for the fuzzy iphone pictures. I thought this place would be a giant public sauna, so I didn't bring my Canon DSLR... :( 

I love his textile design. This picture is taken from the meeting/dining room. As you see, there's a deck with more tables. It would be nice to come back in Summer. 

This trip was part of Raumars' board members meeting & early Christmas dinner. I'm so glad to take a part in this lovely dinner as I got to meet the board members of Raumars in a superb atmosphere. 

I forgot the name of the fish. But it's caught in the local river, and it has spikes... haha. It was so good. 

I was so thrilled to taste this dessert. It's a meringue!!!! omg.. melting in the mouth. I would've ate ten or twenty more if they had. 

Ok, let's go downstairs where it used to be a laundry room. 
It's now a design shop filled with many smart inventions. 

Among them, these santa (?) heads were my favorite. I wanted to pick up a pair, but they were really expensive. I wish Canadian $ was par with €. =( 

They look ten times better in real. My iphone just cannot pick up all those hair details. 

Next door was a little art gallery. They were preparing for an exhibition with paintings by local children who have mental disabilities. All the paintings were very precious, but there were three that really took my heart. 

I think this Hello Kitty painting is damn smart! I'm generally not so keen with children but I love their drawings. Maybe I should really start to consider becoming Art Therapist as my other path. 

We were the only group in this facility, so it felt more like a private sauna. I didn't take any pictures of the actual sauna since I didn't want to embarrass people. However, I found my Rabbit #4 and #5, so here they are. :)

These chocolates were in the Design shop. I wasn't sure if I should consider them as part of my odd rabbit series since they didn't look that odd. But, my rabbit #5, that I found in the sauna hallway, is so odd, I soon forgot about this dilemma. 

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Rauma Day 009

So many happenings. I've been busy and extremely tired due to the jet lag, lack of sleep and stress... , but I slept very well last night, so I'm back to blogging! :D

Hmmm where to start... 6 days passed from last blog, and it's already day 009.
I will give you a little tour of my new appartment.

This is the entrance to my flat. I'm located on the second floor of this lovely house in Syvärauma, 2.5 kilometers from the city centre. 

This is what you see first when you come in the flat. To the left is my kitchen, to the straight is washroom as you see here, and to the right is my living room and bedroom. The washroom still smells fresh renovation smell, so I usually keep the door open. I hope the smell will go soon.  

My studio!!! This place is really huge compare to my little almost-non-existing studio in our Toronto Condo. I have two huge tables to work from and there are plenty of thick pulp papers to let my imagination go wild!

The living room corner. When I arrived, I rearranged few furnitures, so this picture was taken when I was still shelving the books. There are plenty of art books and magazine to read, I'm so overwhelmed!  I'm still in the process of rearranging some stuff, so I will re-post my apartment when all is ready and shining.

This is the street seen from my kitchen window. I like how the window has a thermometer attached to it.

I have my two homes pictured here. There is 7 hours gap between my two homes, it's not so easy to schedule a Skype meeting, but when we do, this is what happens on the screen. Hehe, what a lovely looking couple!! (sorry honey :P)

My grocery #2.
I swear, when I picked up that toilet paper, it said LAMA. with a picture of a lama.... hmmm....
I have fish, some cold cuts, cheese, mayo, etc so this grocery totals to €30.09. :( 
Oh! do you see something odd in that egg carton? There are only ten eggs! It's a little weird to pick up a slightly short egg carton. And the egg yolks are very orange!

I think this is the most brilliant way of selling lettuces. Most of their lettuces come with their roots, I wonder why we don't do it in Canada. 

Of course I had to buy chips. The chips in that lovely packaging was so so so yummy. An ultra version of Miss Vickies. It was €2.65. The pastry in the bag looked so yummy and sweet. It's called 'voisilmäpulla' (Butter Eye Buns). It's supposed to be a "common sweet bread here in Finland with a devilishly sugary eye in the middle", but it wasn't sweet at all. In fact, I expected some kind of sweet filling inside, but this one was just plain and dry. I thought I picked up a not-so-good version of this pastery, but I also had it at the school where I do a project (will explain tomorrow), and I don't think I like it. haha.

I will finish this post with my dinner plate. 
The fish was sooooooooooooo fresh. I normally hate cooking fish due to it's pungent smell, but this one must be so fresh, it didn't smell fishy at all. What a nice discovery!! Yum Yum!