I'm moving to Helsinki.
I figure they've got to have some need for American English majors in Helsinki. Maybe I could help translate menus. At any rate, I love Finland. Like it really is possibly my very favorite place in the world. It's funny because some places I go and enjoy, some I learn, and every once in a while is a place I want to live. Here are the reasons I should live in Helsinki:
1. The shopping is excellent.
2. The general air of the city is modern and design-centric. It has such a good feel.
3. Everyone speaks perfect English.
4. Highest per capita coffee consumption in the word - enough said.
5. They're total socialists.
6. Over 50% of their population had a library card and they're avid readers.
7. Some words in the Finish language are so beautiful. Like this island we went to. Sourmenlinna. When they say it, the word is like wearing a pair of expensive gold earrings.
8. There are like a million high-quality hair salons there. Lord knows, that's important to me.
9. I actually really love lonnnggggg summer days and could get used to short winter ones.
10. At Christmas time they put candle on the graves instead of flowers.
11. No one wears makeup.
12. Though it feels much larger there are only 600,000 people in the city so there's a good community there.
13. Their public transportation system kicks ass.
14. Classes at the university are taught in English as well as Finnish - study abroad much?
15. When I went to the bookstore I found they had large assortments of both Billy Collins and Seamus Heaney poetry.
Unfortunately, I am not living in Finland now, so I'm on my way elsewhere abroad. (Really this is not unfortunate and I am very lucky). Lorin's on his way home and I'm on my way to Venice to meet Judy and the fam. So here's some pictures of St. Petersburg, Helsinki and Tallin: the coffee shops (cutest message ever), churches, farmer's markets (what the fox skin?), islands, sparkly nail polish, monuments, Laura Ashely stores (remember that college essay of mine?), people, deserts, book stores, and generally pretty things I saw there.