If you’ve been keeping a close eye on our blog you’ll have noticed a definite slow-down in postings over the last few weeks. This is partly because we had a little trouble with our server, but mostly because we’ve been really busy! Just to mention a few interesting things:

  • From the 19th of August until the 4th of September was the Helsinki Festival – a celebration of arts in the city. The festival is an annual event and seems like great fun. We only made it to one event – a puppet-building “workshop” run by Roger Titley (a South African!) and Airan Berg (from Israel), and even then still didn’t manage to participate as we would have liked to… But we did get some photos of their very cool vehicle (see below) and a friend pointed us to a YouTube video showing the procession of all the puppets which were built during their workshops (here – it’s quite something!).

The puppet-mobile!


  • Brigitte went for a short mushroom-hunting walk with our friend Tracy in a forest patch bordering on Helsinki’s central park – and we were able to enjoy the fruits of their foraging later that day. My mushroom taxonomy is very basic, but it looks like we at least had some Boletus and Russula mushrooms as a special starter that evening (you can check them out at this useful website). Thanks Tracy!


  • Last week our friend Antti brought us some lakritsi jäätelö (= liquorice ice cream) after reading our posts about tar and salmiakki ice cream. I thought it was pretty good and would recommend it as an easy start to the uniquely Finnish ice cream flavours. Jesse (originally from the liquorice-loving Netherlands) also thought it was great – in fact, he finished the tub!

Liquorice ice cream (a very good brand)

  • We had a nice email from Sofia Edstrom last week to say that she’d linked to one of our blog posts (Brigitte’s post about sima) on her NordLiving newsletter. If you’re living in Australia (Melbourne specifically) and want to get your hands on some of the Nordic goodies that we’ve been blogging about you might want to check out her online shop.
  • And, just to end on something a little different… shortly after arriving in Kallio, we found a talking drain (see the photo’s below). I was doubting my sanity when I heard voices from a storm-water drain – but was then relieved to see that it is actually an art installation! Other bloggers have also commented on it (here, here, here and here), and if you’d like to see (hear) it too, then take a quiet walk to the corner of Torkkelinkuja  and Franzeninkuja. According to Anna MR the recording is saying “Lähtö Finnairin vuorolla AY 844 Amsterdamiin, portti 15…” (“Finnair flight AY 844 to Amsterdam, gate 15…”).


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