These past two days have been glorious. A few degrees below zero (Centigrade), brilliant sunshine, just a little wind. Yesterday loads of people out walking, long queues in cafés. Many places are closed – I guess that’s only fair, they need their holidays like the rest of us. One of the buildings in Eiranranta (rather posh and terribly expensive) built about ten years ago is covered in scaffolding. Water damage. What ever happened to quality control??
Today I walked to Lapinlahti, where an old hospital (1841) is the centre of all sorts of activities: restaurant, café, space for exhibitions, small businesses, artisans’ studios… It was designed by C.L. Engel, the same architect who designed the centre of Helsinki in the first half of the 19th century. Originally it was a mental hospital, the first one in Finland. In it's last years as a hospital it helped people with eating disorders. This picture is from Wikipedia. This time of the year it looks quite bleak from the outside, especially as renovations are going on and there are blue skips in the courtyard. Inside, things are bustling just like in the summer.
I had lunch in Loop, a restaurant transforming waste – food past its best before date – into tasty meals. Salad buffet, soup (tomato), dessert (banana, caramel sauce, whipped cream and toasted seeds) and coffee for 7 euro. The carrot in the salad was very shriveled, but the taste was there. Namm.
The Hietaniemi cemetery (1829) is close by and there is a walkway just outside its wall. I’ve been there once before when I cycled around the shoreline of Helsinki taking the long cut back home. The wall of the cemetery by the sea is impressive, makes you think it could be large fortification. It looks like it belongs to more southern latitudes.
A friend suggested I take a walk on the ice. I don’t know the area and the only person I saw was a winter fisherman. There isn’t ice too thin for winter fishermen, so I definitely was not going on the ice!
I'm Piisa and I will be sharing with you my thoughts on this and that, maybe even on whatever.