Going to the theatre

February 28, 2016

Most of the week has gone by with me complaining about being tired. Stockholm last weekend really depleted my batteries, so I’ve felt like a zombie for the better part of the week. Or Joylent might have been the contributing factor, which you can read more about on its own dedicated post.

We’ve had some really great weather throughout the weekend.

I don’t know, I guess weekend trips are always one day too short, like you’d need a second Sunday, which you just spend at home recuperating yourself.

Anyway, on Friday Jaana and Harri came down from Vaasa for a visit, or rather, to celebrate Jaana’s birthday with us. Paulina had booked a table at a Russian restaurant called Troikka, it was a really nice, albeit small, restaurant decorated in what I guess is traditional Russian style.

But never mind the looks, the food was down right awesome, it was really one of the best restaurants I’ve been to here in Helsinki.

Poster at Svenska Teatern.

After the dinner, we went to see a play at Svenska Teatern (translates to The Swedish Theatre) which is located in central-central Helsinki, on Esplanaden or basically by Stockmann.

The play that we saw is called “Sånger vid randen av ett grått hav” which in turn translates to “Songs by the edge of a gray sea”, and it was about a typical small town or village that you can find by the western coast of Finland. The title of the play isn’t really fair, since there’s not a lot of singing, there’s like two or three songs throughout the whole play, of which only one of the songs are actually, eh, performed?

Anyway, the play was really good. I’ve been to my share of theatre performances (not too many, but a handful) and most of them haven’t been really memorable. But this one, since it didn’t really have a clear story, and it ended with lots of unresolved strings, which were left to the viewer to interpret, was quite interesting. Even though I’ve been thinking about it, I can’t say for sure if I understood everything that happened in the show.

Walking home from the city.

So after the show, me and Paulina were heading home. We took the subway to Ruoholahti, and then changed to bus number 20. When we got to the bus stop, it said that the bus would arrive in about 3 minutes. After about 5 minutes, the display said 1 minute remaining (whoever programmed those signs live in an alternate universe, where time moves in a different pace). The timer ticked down to 0, and reset to 25.

This is what I hate with the buses here in Helsinki, you can’t count on them, never. Paulina was sure that the bus was just delayed and the sign was out of sync. But this has happened so many times to me previously, that I knew that there weren’t going to be a bus for the next 25 minutes. As we stood there, a random guy walked up, and asked us in Swedish-Swedish (i.e. not Finnish-Swedish, but in actual Sweden Swedish accent) if we knew when the bus would arrive and if it was the correct bus for Lauttasaari.

I got a bit thrown off, mostly because there’s an unspoken rule in Finland, and that is to keep interaction with fellow people, especially in the bus line, to an absolute minimum. There’s a reason why these kind of images have been made. Well, I answered that I didn’t think the bus was going to arrive in the near future, but that it was indeed the correct bus stop.

It’s generally the small things in life that make you happy. Like people drawing male genitalia and hearts in the snow on multiple cars on a single street.

We kept talking with the guy for the remainder of time, he was a young student who had moved to Finland last August to study at the Arcada university of applied sciences. He was a really nice guy actually.

I’ve never had a casual discussion with strangers in Finland at a bus stop, the only exception to that rule is if the stranger in question is foreign. There’s a lot of things we Finnish people need to learn from other cultures. Just having that conversation with the guy made the waiting for the bus a whole lot easier, since you weren’t constantly checking the time left on the display.

As soon as the ice has melted, people with fishing equipment show up along the shores of Lauttasaari. I wonder if this is a sign that spring is coming to Helsinki?

The next morning me and Paulina got up early, we had breakfast plans with Jaana and Harri, and we had agreed to meet up with them at their hotel at 9 AM. When I got up at 7:30, I had the brilliant idea that I wanted to test out Sunday morning. Get up, do my usual morning routine that I do during the week days, and then when I’m done (coffee, shower etc.), I’d just go back to bed, but I digress.

We got to the hotel and had our breakfast there. The hotel was Scandic Marski, i.e. the same hotel chain that we stayed at in Stockholm the previous weekend. The major difference between the breakfast selection was that they had a lot more of everything, I guess this was a larger hotel, but also, in the two Scandic hotels that I’ve stayed at in Stockholm, none of them have had croissants, which is a crime against hotel breakfast rules. But Marski here in Helsinki, did have croissants. So I had like 10 of them, as a protest about not getting any croissants in Stockholm.

After the breakfast Paulina had to go to work. Me, having the day off, and seeing as the sun was shining, decided to just walk the five or so kilometers home. For the last couple of weeks we’ve had mostly rain, with some snow every now and then, but mostly rain.

So when I finally had the chance to enjoy some proper sunlight (without it being too warm), I didn’t want to miss it.