Apartment shots, market meandering and cathedral hopping
I didn’t take any pictures of the apartment so I stole these from Nikki. Keeping in mind our mixed yet overall positive review, you guys should check this place out if you’re ever in Helsinki. The location is really great.
Reading back my first post I realised that I didn’t actually talk about what exactly was so ‘bad’ about Helsinki. Which again I need to clarify, that the trip wasn’t bad per se, but uneventful. Things like a shitty restaurant I can quite easily overlook, but having nothing to do really puts a damper on a three day two night holiday. Thankfully there is a certain charm to dreary weather, whether simply as a juxtaposition to warm fires and hot cocoa. I know that these four weeks in Scandinavia have given me a new appreciation for the great indoors.
Not many people on exchange thus far seem to share the same appreciation my friends and I in Sydney have for food. Thankfully Jordan is made of malleable stuff (read: easy-going) and obliges me my visit to the Hakaniemi Market Square. It’s worth mentioning here that getting day passes to use the Helsinki Metro is great value. A single trip costs about 2.5 Euros while my 3-Day pass costs 16 Euros. On that particular day we easily rode the Metro about 8 times.
It was only after the markets that we managed to meet the others. At some point on the first day I asked Giacomo why he wanted to come to Helsinki when he had already been before. He told me he came as a high schooler and was young and stupid then without any regard for appreciating the city. Giacomo says there’s something really enriching about being a tourist, you learn a lot of things by simply being around a new environment.
The stairs up are deceptively slippery with snow and sludge. I accidentally got caught in a ‘danger lies before you and safety lies beyond the danger behind’ situation whereby being at the midpoint of the stairs I was bound to slip either way. Thankfully Jordan guided me back to safety by walking me towards the side of the staircase which I had completely missed as having been cleared of all snow. He chivalrously took the step below mine saying that he would be better able to help me should I fall backwards. Silly Canadians underestimating the sheer weight of an Asian girl.
At this point this would be the third cathedral we’ve visited. The inside was completely dark except for candles that were lit. For most of the part we simply just sat in the darkness while Giacomo observed the room and the artefacts. Nikki and Jordan both commented on how serene places of worship were. We stayed for quite awhile considering only one of our party was Catholic, leaving only when their service began.
Dinner at Thai/Viet
Supposed to be chicken pho; some kind of sweet and sour duck
Ordinarily I am weary of any restaurant that offers a combination of Asian cuisines because it is the stupidest thing I have ever heard of. There seem to be a plethora of them in both Helsinki and in Stockholm a phenomenon I do not understand. It’s not as if we have German-Swiss-Spanish cuisine in Asia even though we may not culturally understand Europe? But after a day of trawling around the cold city, I am tired and hungry and cannot stand another meal with pasta as the main dish. I will surrender to anything with hot clear soup and a little bit of spice. To my Thai roommate, Natalie, I am sorry.
All of it was surprisingly still very good. Particularly the pho as the noodles were actually the right type. I don’t know what the duck was supposed to be, maybe an interpretation of sweet and sour pork. Nevertheless it was still very good as you can hardly go wrong with duck. The beef rolls were the most disappointing, we intended to order fresh rice paper rolls but the waitress said they had none. This was minutes before we saw it being served to another table but at this point our order was already taken.
My sad ‘kebab’ story
I’ve told this story a number of times to several people already so I might as well disclose it here on the blog. I begin with saying that I had absolutely zero intention of going out that night as I was still really tired from the night before in coming back at 5 am. Also taking into account how lovely our apartment is, I just wanted to bask in its homeliness and perhaps even use the jacuzzi. But somehow in the middle of socialising with the bunch of them who were pre-gaming before a night out, Giacomo convinced me to take half a shot. Three more shots later I found myself upholding Jenna Marbles’ Drunk Make Up Tutorial legacy and out the door I was with everyone.
Out of everyone in Mario Party I am the weakest and least inclined drinker. Apparently life dictates that when you feel really strongly about something say, not drinking, the inverse will inadvertently happen. What occurred that night in some club in Kamppi was like Opposite Day, if my Opposite Day was ‘Don’t throw up five times’. The title reference is to the fact that I also had a kebab at some point between vomit #3 and #4 but must have dropped it or lost it because I don’t know where it went yet I know I did not finish it. Not that it really mattered since #4 saw me heave it all back up. And #5 was my tip to the taxi driver. Needless to say I inherited some huge karma debt that night which I need to pay up lest in the future some incredibly dumb chick has way too much to drink and throws up in my car.
I am also pretty sure I scared all of Mario Party. It was almost like my body was helping me support the argument I have been telling them from the moment we met ‘I am a light weight, see I’ll show you’. Another thing I also recall being said during the time Nikki (god bless her heart of gold) was looking after me was ‘Wow there’s so much inside your tiny little person. Where does it all come from?!’. Surprisingly no one heckled me this time I went to the shower, except Giacomo but I think that was only to check that I hadn’t drowned myself.
My last day in Helsinki wasn’t as much of a wreck as it could have been as I had basically thrown up all the bad life decisions I made the day before, so I was just tired. I slept a lot, ate mediocre sushi for dinner and bought myself Miss Dior Blooming Bouquet and a giant block of Fazer milk chocolate at Duty Free. All in all a pretty good ending to a trip akin to previously mentioned sushi. I am not an alcoholic but feel it appropriate to mention that I am 7 days sober.
Now Playing: Drugs in My Body – Thieves Like Us