I ♥ Helsinki: Part Two
Monday: Aida and I went to Itäkeskus, which is a huge shopping center with all kinds of different clothing stores, including Seppälä, H&M, Zara, aleksi. I would say it’s a mall, but mall’s have such a negative conotation-at least for me- and it is definitely not anything like the malls in America. I didn’t buy anything on this trip, but definitely saw tons of really pretty things that I could have bought. I also had the chance to visit a Marimekko store, which I enjoyed.
Tuesday: We went to a swimming hall in Vuosaari, and only there because the one at Itäkeskus is closed for the summer. But the swimming hall in Vuosaari was still a blast! Definitely a lot different from the ones in America, where you just arrive in your swimsuits and jump in the pool. Due to cleanliness and hygiene reasons, there are some stuff that must be done before one can dive into the refreshing pool. In the women’s changing room, you get totally naked, go take a shower, must go to the sauna, either the steam or traditional sauna, but we did both, then take a shower to rinse of everything that was detoxed, go back put on your swimsuit, and then jump into the pool. We had a lot of fun, jumped tons of times, went down the slide a couple of times, and visited some of the other pools as well.
Wednesday: Went to Jumbo, which is another shopping center but in Vantaa. A lot of fun as well! Basically did the same thing there that we did at Itäkeskus, but visited some of the stores that we didn’t get to there. We spent A LOT of time at Stockman ( beautiful shoes shoes shoes!) and Zara, where my cousin found a really nice sweater that her mother went and bought for her. I also bought my little brother a Muumi pillow case from Stockman. However, it was after Jumbo that really made the day special: Suomenlinna! Which is a really old sea fortress, but literally translates into Finnish castle in English. To get there, we drove through Helsinki and had to take a ferry ride across the sea. It was a lot of walking, tunnels, and photographs! Everything there is so historical, I could definitely see myself spending the whole day there, but just relaxing and enjoying my time.
Thursday: Thursday was arguably the best day during my stay in Helsinki. I got the best of both that I wanted: shopping and experiencing the historical downtown Helsinki. Helsinki is an amazing city, with a rich history and beautiful architecture. But there was a lot of immense beauty. I fell in love with Helsinki mainly due to everything we did on Thursday. We first went to photograph two statues that my mother told me about, Mannerheim and the naked Greek men in front of Stockman. Once we found them, we went back, and went to Sokos and Stockman. At first, we found our way around by going back to the train station, Rautatieasema, and then going from there, but eventually we just let go and didn’t care and we knew that if we really did get seriously lost then we could always call someone, which we ended up doing when we wanted to go the President’s Palace, which is beautiful from the outside, with guilded spires on the fence and gate. My cousin went and took a photograph of a guard by some other official building, one of those guards that isn’t supposed to smile or anything but you try to get a response anyway. Yep, she did it as I was too nervous. We also ended up finding the marimekko store and I bought my cousin back home something from there!
Friday: Friday was a perfect day to end the very busy week. We went to my cousin’s mother’s store, Baby Center, that sells baby carriages, some strollers, car seats and carriers; but mostly carriages, her store also brings in Dorjan carriages into the country from Poland. Here in Finland, they use more carriages for babies rather than strollers because they are better for the back and spine, as well as growth of the baby. My cousin gave me a presentation of almost all of the carriages, and now I am a huge fan of the Dorjan brand and whenever -if ever- I have kids I will buy that brand. Other than baby business, we hit up youtube and watched fashion shows, mainly from modtv. For lunch we had a very Finnish meal: fish-siikaa, and creamed potatoes, with milk, then buscuits and coffee. ♥
**I did not take the above shots, they’re beautiful yes, but everything I took is still on film waiting to be developed when I get back to the US. I will not take credit for beautiful shots when I did not take them. The credit belongs to the people below:
[1, 2, 3 Google Images]