Helsinki harbour early in the morning, Cholera Pool, unknown ship.
Like I may have mentioned, I spent my Bobmas in Nurmijärvi, Finland where my parents live. Lots of time was naturally spent in Helsinki because it's suitably near and much shopping happened. The country looked somehow unreal without the usual metre and a half of snow but I could comfort myself with the thought that Iceland probably had twice that amount already and more falling every day.
There are some things about Helsinki that never, ever seem to change. One - and an important one for those who'd like to visit the capital some time - is that the cafes at the Kauppatori (marketplace at the harbour) open at the crack of dawn. Even if there seems to be no customers or even a possibility of such creatures existence. There were also some sellers already in various stages of opening their booths. In the back there was actually a bread seller from Nurmijärvi already at her completed stand.
Others, of course, were not nearly as ready. There's a salesperson there in the folds of the tent, I assure you. Quite a remarkable lady too for putting up that tent all by herself in that weather! Windy and rainy and miserable, the kind of coldness that seeps right through your clothes.
Some cafes know this and know exactly how to advertise their tents for maximum customer temptation. See that sign under the Finnish and Swedish flags (signs that the customer service there speak both languages btw)? Says +18°C. That's +64,4°F.
Amanda of the Sea, or simply Manta. Legend says she's a mermaid who left her home and is casting one last look at it, being the allegory of "The Daughter of the Baltic Sea", Helsinki. Another legend says she bears cunning resemblance to someone's wife (the important thing to notice is that the wife was not the artist's who made the statue). However, there are two ladies from Paris who the artist mentioned as his models so perhaps some legends are simply that, legends.
Senate Square Cathedral, the most iconic building of the city. Looks rather romantic in the light of the rising sun. The little houses down below are a Bobmas marketplace, full of all kind of interesting, necessary and yummy items that people clearly need. Many types of canned animals, bakery products, sweets, jewellery, clothes, hats, art etc.
Here's the all-time favourite Tsar of Finns: Alexander II of Russia. Even the seagulls know he's the best.
This booth sells traditional knives and that sign on the left side is something unbelievably Finnish:
"The first knife for children
engraving a name included in the price"
Because clearly every child needs a knife. I'm not going to say anything because I learned to use one at the mature age of perhaps four or so. It was my grandma's idea. So that I could, er, make bark boats to amuse myself. Naturally the thing I cut the most were my own hands; I still have memories of having at least one band aid per finger every time we went to the summer cottage.
Well, it was more than just bark boats. My grandma also taught me to clean mushrooms and gut fish, so learning to sue the knife was actually very important indeed.
Right after Bobmas Finland was hit by a series of storms so bad that in some areas the electricity's still not back on. Our house suffered only minor damage but even so I liked to avoid the worst weather. This video is taken after the wind subsided a bit.
However, it was strong enough to do this...
Here's where that piece of metal belongs to.
Mum's new spruce trees were also curiously tilted after the second day of storms.