I will never get tired of saying that I love biking in Helsinki! Even though it is so much colder than in Chicago (it was a peak of Indian summer in Chicago last weekend, with temperatures rising to 74F), it is so much nice! I can’t stop marveling at the fact that there are safe bike paths everywhere! This time, I bought better and warmer biking gear, and I like it so much that I almost want to take it back to Chicago :). We went on two bike rides, Sunday and Monday, and the weather was perfect for biking!
I wanted to try one of Fazer’s ice cream creations for a while, and yesterday was the first time tried Fazerella. And believe it or not, my verdict – too much chocolate! Boris was wiser to choose rhubarb sorbet with truffle ice cream!
What else is there in summer? The strawberries that can’t be matched, forty flavors of ice cream, pride festivities, 86F weather for two weeks in a row.
And also – Helsinki’s IKEA.
IKEA always gives me a sense of stability and an “all is right” feeling. Now, it is almost impossible for me to go to the Schaumburg IKEA, so most of my orders are online (which means, that IKEA food is out of reach for me). We decided to go to IKEA “just for window shopping,” but then we found these coffee cups of that perfect pale turquoise which was gone several years ago. The cups were not rectangular as Boris likes them, but they were still near perfect. We didn’t buy them because I wanted to check online first, and for some reason, my internet went down. When I checked at home, it turned out that 1) this was a new product and 2) this color was sold out in all of the IKEA stores in the US!
The next day, when I was at the Swiss PG Day, Boris went there again and got two boxes of coffee cups with saucers, and a box of espresso cups. I only managed to get one box in my luggage, and he should bring the other two when he comes to Chicago next time.
if a scarecrow should scare crows, these “black birds” should be called “scareseagull,” because their purpose is to keep the seagulls away from the open-air dining. However, I saw a couple of very brave seagulls making their way through, trying very carefully to avoid the black scare 🙂
During my unplanned stay in Helsinki earlier this week, we went to two concerts. One was a short lunchtime concert at Suomenlinna Church (yes, we went there again :)).
Then on Wednesday, we went to the concert of Finnish Baroque Orchestra in the Saksalainen Church in Helsinki. Boris is a part of their “friends circle”, and I never attended their concerts.
They are really-really-really good! Performing “here and now”, enjoying what they do, and giving the distinct feeling of “making the music”.
Boris had a very bad bike accident on Wednesday. He says that’s because the sun was bright and because he was not looking at the road but looking back, making sure I was not left behind. In my opinion, the problem was his state of mind. Before we went, I asked him whether he was sure we should go, and he said – yes, it might become better.
He had very serious reasons to be upset, so all is understandable, but as a result, he ran into the rear of a police car – at full speed! I am not even going to describe his face (it still looks very impressive, and actually worse than right after the accident), but the most amazing thing is that he broke a police car bumper!!!
The police filed a proper report, and the hilarious part of this story was that the officer said: we hope our insurance will cover the damage, but we need to check. Most times, it’s not the bike hitting a car, but the opposite, so we need to check whether they would cover the situations like this!
Boris took me to another rose garden – and I thought I knew all of them in Helsinki, at least the ones which are close to the city center. But here is another one – and in walking distance from our home.
And yes, not all of the flowers pictured here are roses, I know 🙂Continue reading “A Rose Garden”
Helsinki greeted me with rain and barely 60F, but today is sunny, and isn’t it great to be so close to the North on the Summer Soltis?! I do not think I saw any dark last night:). Somehow, 63F seems miserably cold in Chicago but feels perfectly summery in Helsinki.
And the bike paths! And the ability to bike everywhere, and the parks so close to the city center! Yes, as much as I complain about missing out on two weeks of Chicago summer, I enjoy these days in Helsinki – a perfect summer in a different way.
On Tuesday, I met with my friend Natasha, and she took me to the Sinebrychoff’s Art Museum.
As the museum site states, the private art collection gathered by Fanny and Paul Sinebyshoff was bequeathed to the Finnish state in 1921. All I can say is that the collection is really impressive; many of the items are real masterpieces. There are some Early Renaissance and Medieval Italian paintings, Dutch and Flemish art, Russian Icons as old as the 14th century, and many other art pieces. I wish there would be more information available in English and more information in general. Many artworks do not have an artist’s name, the origin, or both, or do not have the art school specified. For example, a 15th-century Russian icon can come from different parts of Russia, or an “anonymous artist” of the 18th century could come from different countries, and I would love to know about that :).
Here are some pictures I took in the museum:Continue reading “Sinebrychoff Art Museum”
Each time I bike in Helsinki, I marvel at how awesome the bike paths are! I can’t even compare it with Chicago! Pretty much anywhere in the city, the bike lanes are clearly marked, and it is completely safe to bike. And there are so many different routes! In Chicago, if I decide to go biking after work, I have to navigate heavy traffic even if I follow the bike routes, and it might take me up to 30 minutes to reach the Lake Front Trail. Here in Helsinki, I can bike anywhere at any time of the day!