As ice forms on the waters of our fair land, the Finns always have a strong urge to go and walk/skate/fish/ski on the ice. It is also a custom that people go too early when the ice is not yet strong enough and there are news of people falling into the water and needing to be saved. Sort of sad, but seems to be one of those news that you could pretty much copy-paste for the coming winters.
This winter started late, but with a bang and now it has been proper winter for a month or so. The ice formed quickly even on the sea, and now it is also safe to walk on if the place does not have a strong current.
In the spring this will fill up with nice boats.
From the pier onto the ice.
Ice-skating is great fun when there is not too much snow on the ice.
All frozen in.
Just a fun stroll on the ice. And a hot chocolate to warm the body after the cold wind.
I stumbled upon a list of reasons to visit my hometown, so I thought I would link that for my foreign readers.
“7 THE CHURCH THAT ROCKS
OK, we’ve allowed ourselves some poetic licence, but not much. The Temppeliaukion Kirkko is not so much made of rock, as carved into a massive block of granite, which was hollowed out to create this space. You have the sensation of being in an underground retreat, with circular walls made of serrated stone, a ceiling of copper wire and light flooding in through 180 slabs of glass in the roof. Check local listings to see if any concerts are being held here while you’re in town; alternatively, drop in late on a summer evening. Sitting back and watching the changing colour of the sky is a spiritual experience in itself.”
This used to be bustling train yard. Now it has passed on to history. The track on the left is still in use (main railway track of Finland, but the rest is slowly receding, to be replaced by apartments etc in the future.
So, Southern Finland finally got her first snow of the winter. The word would be of course, finally, as last year the winter started oh, about two months earlier. So with almost a snap of the fingers the weather changed from dark, wet and relatively warm (+8 celsius) to around -10 with first snow on the ground as well. Positively, there is more light now and that has a very invigorating effect.
Here are a few snaps just after the snow came. If you have followed my blog for a while you can see how dark and wet it has been earlier.
As is obvious from the photos, there is not a lot of snow as of yet. But still rather nice, albeit I do not like if the temperature drops too low. At the moment its more a case of how you clothe yourself..
A lot of trees fell down in the last storm of the autumn.
A yearly tradition, a spectacle of light for the darkest part of the year was the past week in Helsinki. The light show aptly called LUX Helsinki featured different artists from home and abroad. There was snow and ice last year at the same time. This year rain, but quite warm, so it was a different experience altogether..
One of the main features was at the cathedral. Agatha Ruiz de la Prada & D-Facto: Corazón. A heart beating to music and different lights, beautiful work by a Spanish artist. My photo does no justice to this as I took it hand held and it of course shows only a small fraction of a second.
Here are a few more photos for your enjoyment, all taken around the areas of Töölönlahti.
The best comment for this: “Look, its an alien egg!” 😀
Lovely colors in this one.
Ring[z) by Philippe Morvan. This was a beutiful, long show with music.
I loved this piece.
A bit of sparkly shoes, eh ladies?
Fractures appear, when we last expect them,
A hard ice formed by time, a heart hardened by hurt, suddenly shattered, Love crashing in like the Sun
As one of the main focuses of this blog has always been food, I have been a bit sad to have so few restaurant reviews in the last few months. The reason being, I have eaten more at home or at the same familiar places which have nothing new to report of.
However a new acquaintance came in the form of Empire Plaza. The Chinese restaurant located in /beside Kamppi shopping centre, at the heart of the city. A place which I have often thought of visiting but have for some reason or the other always passed by. Either because of the restaurant being full, or because of a craving for a different sort of food. Finally I had the chance to visit and eat at this restaurant.
First impressions. A rather large and comfortable restaurant with a nice atmosphere. The waiters are very accommodating and the serving works as it should. Menu is already on the table, and drinks come quickly. Price wise not the cheapest Chinese restaurant in Helsinki, but also not too expensive and in-line with the look of the place.
The menu was quite large and consists of vegetarian, meat and seafood options as well as Dim Sum. There were also enough spicier versions for those wishing their food has a bit of bite..
One of the restaurants specialties: sizzling food. This portion was King Prawn skewers in satay sauce. Excellent. And the sizzle was spectacular as the sauce was poured on the hot plate.
My choice for this visit was a wok called Nam Yu. The food included bamboo shoots, cabbage, mushrooms, noodles etc. The portion came in a beautiful wooden carriage. Great looking, and the food tasted excellent as well. Only trouble was I am not good in eating with “sticks” so had to resort to fork and knife halfway through. Not a fault of the food, but my own. Need to practice more..
In conclusion, Empire Plaza was a positive restaurant to visit and I will be definitely visiting it again sooner rather than later. Probably to eat some properly made Cantonese duck.