Saturday, 30 April 2016

at the ice-hole air is bubbled during whole winter to prevent from freezing
yesterday the bubbling was stopped
to have my morning bath i had to break a thin layer of ice
otherwise summer, +13ish, but it felt +25 on the sunshine
two more days like this and all the snow will be gone

first of may is vappu in finland, fiesta is everywhere
except here
they celebrate the end of winter

i celebrated with canoeing on the river
i paddled some kilometers until a bridge where the river narrows, of course i went down to spice up things
on the way up, the boat got stuck on a rock, i had some frightful moments
coming back against the flow and wind

Friday, 29 April 2016

the summer continues
i was in ivalo afternoon
the landscape is quite unfriendly there without snow (or dirty snow) and with dead plants
+13 and incredible sunshine
i was reading for hours on the pier in t-shirt

school camps have gone, vasatokka is empty
it is strange to go to sauna in daylight, but i barely have choice

Thursday, 28 April 2016

cigarette butt in finnish
so much snow melted that plenty of them appeared all around the yard
of course, i had  to collect them

i forgot such weather could exist, in which you can wear a t-shirt only
they said it is normal in june

Wednesday, 27 April 2016

the lappish silence is broken by screaming kids
this week there are two school groups
one from alta, norway
the other from kemijärvi, finland, at home there is more snow than here
children at age 10-15
the norwegians learn finnish, so i had to talk to them in finnish
and tonight i was supervising their disco
how lovely

this was the first genuine spring day, an in incredible amount of snow melted

Monday, 25 April 2016

today i asked Pekka about the boating possibilities, and we took out a canoe from the warehouse
around 9 pm with Konsta we went to try
exotic canoeing in gloves, winter coat, rubber boots, and with winter scenery
along the icy shore of the river,
then sunset from water (what a variability in the events here)
it was cloudy but maybe there were most fabulous colors so far
orange northern lights

here 3 seasons can be represented in one day
yesterday early afternoon there was lovely sunshine
i hitchhiked to inari to meet Konsta the portuguese and to get fruits
while i was waiting for a car, I was laying on the asphalt, eyes closed, backpack under my head i could imagine being at a beach
but lappish silence
inari is 10 minutes by car, but i got out into snowstorm
around 9-10 we could stare at the sunset, but it was crazy cold

Sunday, 24 April 2016

yesterday it was overcast all day
i was skyping for four hours
finished the márquez
read the finnish children's books

Friday, 22 April 2016

last evening i went for a walk and found a rowboat at the lakeside
i cleaned it from ice, snow and fallen leaves
i was very excited to try
but today they said i shouldn't use it, that doesent belong to vasatokka
what a pity
but i dont give up

Thursday, 21 April 2016

yesterday there was a picturesque (or sloppy) sunset again
around quarter past nine
this time i was alone, with my head empty and my glass filled with red wine
there was still quite much light at midnight, then soon i went to bed
i have office work to do nowadays
i help sari with evs applications, a scary deadline is coming
she seems to be lost sometimes, and hopes some help from me
it is very funny, she talks to me almost only in finnish, i try to get the point, and do something
no doubt, excellent language training
i cannot complain
the morning baths are the highlights of the days
i walk down to the lake wearing only a towel and sandals
today in light snowfall
at dawn it was -10, and there was a thin layer of ice on the open part of the lake
there were birds and men fishing further

Monday, 18 April 2016

the sunny days worth everything, like today

this is the place where my days start with a bath
and they end if there is sunset to watch or a sauna break to have
today i was laying there for hours, reading and having sunbath
it was plus 10

an earlier picture

i was in ivalo around noon, i showed my hand to a doctor
most probably it is not broken, but i was very scared
it is swollen, very sensitive and painful

tonight instead of sauna i went for a walk to the little wooden watchtower and the lake
alone, cloudy nightfall
beautiful orange clouds in the far distance
some parts on the ice are truly flat now
moonlight filtered by the clouds and vasatokka's lights were reflecting on the ice
incredible silence of course
what else to tell

Sunday, 17 April 2016

a fishing competition was held there today
they had four hours to catch as many fish as they can
i won a fazer chocolate on lottery!
at the end of the of the event i was offered all the fish they caught
after cleaning the half amount i got fed up and i threw out the rest
but still a lot of fish in the freezer

and again, there was an unbelievable sunset, with magic colors
all day was ugly rainy but for the end it cleared up in the distance
i was chilling with Konsta and red wine on the pier for icebath after the fish-cleaning job

it is impossible to get tired of these sunsets, i will miss them for sure
a main attraction in vasatokka

Saturday, 16 April 2016

afternoon i went fishing with Marja, Veli-Matti and a friend of theirs to the other side of the lake
we fried sausage and and brewed coffee on fire
we were discussing birds, fishes, and weather

the true taste of lapland

noone will understand me in southern finland, i learn the lappish dialect

tomorrow there will be an ice-fishing competition in riutula (a few houses in the neighborhood of vasatokka)

late afternoon i went skiing in light snowfall, the conditions were excellent
my knees are better but i hurt my little finger, i hope it is not broken

Thursday, 14 April 2016

i have just eaten up the tasty grayling (pénzes pér!) Pekka and Jouni caught
shortly after dinner

in the morning, right after waking up i had bath in the lake
and i went for a short walk on the frozen snow and later to the ice, listening to the calling of swans
so many different birds here now
they keep a diary about observations on them
then i went to the sauna building to have good moments with márquez and the scenery

afternoon hitchhiking to ivalo and back, always the same
and again, i was picked up by known people

i am starting to be more and more self-confident with finnish

Wednesday, 13 April 2016

when i woke up and pulled my head out from the cover of a blanket i was blinded by the light for five minutes
winter came back with striking sun, temperature during the night went down to -10ish and stayed below zero all day
the morning was beautiful but windy

snow was frozen to stone
the change of nature is catching here, in the afternoon a short snowstorm came, dark gray clouds, whiteout, sunshine at the same time

the sunset gazing was more successful than yesterday

there is high aurora chance for tonight

Tuesday, 12 April 2016

vasatokka is still empty
i had around 40 minutes of work to do today
in the afternoon some sunshine came
Lukas is leaving on thursday
Sari took us to ivalo get some fruits and vegetables
she took us to her house in ivalo, her husband sold me some decent red wine
on the way back we were picked up by Veli-Matti, Marja's husband and we had a direct lift to vasatokka
Konsta, a previous evs volunteer in vasatokka from portugal is here now
we went out to the roof to check the sunset, but was very windy and became cloudy, so after 10 minutes we came back


i have just turned on the sauna
it is 23:30 and no complete darkness

i tried to take some pictures about this lappish decoration of sauna breaks
difficult to describe the atmosphere with words, very quiet