Birthday girl

Natal ChartMy astrological chart

"When you are old and grey and full of sleep...." Right, it's my birthday. And I'm thinking about Paul Auster's interview which I saw on tv last weekend. This New York author was aswering to the question: "Are you lonely?"

And he said something which I feel is becoming so very true in my life as well: "People are never really alone, we all have all these memories of other people around us. Nowadays many of these people are dead. So I'm living among the ghosts all the time"

So, that's really what the ageing is about, accepting that you are only partly looking forward in life and most of the time you think about the past and the ghosts around you.

And because it's my birthday I put a picture of my natal chart here. I don't know so much about astrology - only that my sign of zodiac is Libra, ascendant is Sagittarius. Libra means that I have a communicative nature and I seek harmony. Sagittarius makes me extroverted, demonstrative and passionate. True or false, who knows...


Pictures on the wall

A future office, what will it look like? A couple of weeks ago some people that are in real estate business said that in future office you won't have your own room, not even your own desk.
You only have some desks to which you and all the other peole can dock. Perhaps that's possible in some professions.

I think they are forgetting what people are really like. We want to have our own territory. And we are like dogs or cats, we mark what it ours. Not by peeing all around, but by personifying our space.

Like me, I have my pictures and photos on the wall. My own tea cup on the desk. All these little things say: "This is me, this is mine!"

Examples of my pictures and photos:
- My family gathered down by the table in the garden
- My husband and my dog
- A comic strip that tells how much power the press has
- 4 photos taken during our trip in Sweden
- A photo of me, taken by my husband
- My dog sulking under the table (you know, just to make me quilty)
- An old photo of my grandmother's farm house from the beginning of the century (probably 1900-1905).
- Some invitations
- A photo of last Vappu (1st of May)


Curls or no curls?

I'm going to the hairdresser today. I should actually leave in 15 minutes or so. It's some new guy and I'm wondering what I should tell him to do.
Curls or no curls?

I used to have curls when I was 19 and 20. Perhaps my willingness to take curls has something to do with the wish of going back in time. Just once again, be young and have a future so totally open for you.

Well, I can't go back, I have to be what I'm now with straight hair and all.


Last Sunday we went with our dog to pick some mushrooms in Sipoo near Helsinki. We ended up to the shore of this beautiful forest lake Hältingträsk, which is situated near Östersundom. We found some trumbet-shaped chanterelles (suppilovahverot) and some rufou milk caps (kangasrouskut). I prefer chanterelles, because they are much easier to use than milk caps. Those milk caps you have to cook.
Hältingträsk Sipoo
Our dog was truly enjoying himself. Weather was nice, warm and sunny, so it was quite perfect way of spending the Sunday afternoon.
On Sunday evening I went to see a movie called "The Crash" with my friends. I was a bit reluctant at first, because it's not the sort of film I usually like to see. But it was much better than I expected.

Lady in distress

Guess where this lady is!

More information about sculptures in Helsinki you can find here!


Visiting a manor house

I visited this Kotkaniemi manor house on Tuesday. House was built in 1836. It reminds me of the works of Carl Ludvig Engel, who designed the Cathedral of Helsinki and lot of other stuff. Apparently this house was designed by his apprentice.

All in all, this has been a busy week. Now I'm waiting for a relaxing weekend. I just hope I will get one.


Yle strikes

No half past eight o'clock news today. Finnish broadcasting company YLE's personnel is going to march out and they will be no sendings between 2 PM and midnight today. YLE plans to reduce its current work force of 3600 employees by more than 400 in the coming years.
I wonder what they are going to show in the TV today? Test card??? and radio? Well, we will find out pretty soon - after a minute or so.


"If I were" meme

I thougth a meme would be nice for a change. I got this meme from Tuleva Kätilö.

If I were a month, I would be: September
If I were a day of the week, I would be: Friday
If I were a time of day, I would be: 11 PM
If I were a planet, I would be: Mars
If I were a sea animal, I would be: star-fish (Meritähti)
If I were a direction, I would be: right
If I were a piece of furniture, I would be: chair
If I were a sin, I would be: pride
If I were a liquid, I would be: sea water
If I were a stone, I would be: granite
If I were a tree, I would be: oak
If I were a bird, I would be: hawk
If I were a flower/plant, I would be: day lily (päivälilja)
If I were a kind of weather, I would be: light rain
If I were a musical instrument, I would be: cello
If I were an animal, I would be: lion
If I were a color, I would be: red
If I were a vegetable, I would be: aubergine (munakoiso)
If I were a sound, I would be: wind whistling
If I were an element, I would be: air
If I were a car, I would be: Old Chevrolet from 1920's
If I were a song, I would be: Seasons of wither by Aerosmith
If I were a movie, I would be: Dersu Uzala by Akira Kurosawa
If I were a book, I would be written by: Margaret Atwood
If I were a food, I would be: tiramisu
If I were a place, I would be: Porvoo in Finland
If I were a number, I would be: nine


Visiting Vaasa

Mustasaari churchMustasaaren kirkko Mustasaari church 3rd September 2005
I visited Vaasa (Finnish town in the west coast) on Saturday with my husband and his friend Juha. We left the dog to my mom. I wanted to see some culture, so we went to this art museum called Tikanoja Art Museum. They had an exhibition about orientalism in the art. It was nice to see their Matisse. I'm very fond of the works of the Finnish painter called Eemu Myntti. He was a Finnish expressionist and lived many years in France. Tikanoja Art Museum was a former home of a business man called Frithjof Tikanoja. He was the brother-in-law of the painter Eemu Myntti. Mr Tikanoja and Josef Lassila founded a company called Lassila & Tikanoja in Vaasa in 1905. First it was a wholesale business. Nowadays Lassila & Tikanoja is a Finnish public listed company specializing in environmental management and property and plant maintenance throughout the Baltic region.
We also visited the old Vaasa and Mustasaari (=Korsholm) church. It was built in 1776 as a Court of Appeal by Kustaa III (Gustavus III). The old Vaasa was destroyed in the fire in 1852 and they transformed the court house as a church. The new town of Vaasa was then built on the coast six kilometres from the old town.


Dogs and Cats

I've been telling so much about my dog Jekku in this blog, so I thought it might be appropriate to reveal that I used to be a cat person before.

The first cat I ever fall in love to was a cat in my grandmother's house. At the time I was six years old. The cat was called Elvis. A black-and-white cutie.
He lived in a farm and chased mouses and rats.

The second time was when I was about 12 and found kittens in the stall. They had eye infections and I decided to save one of the from the evident (you know what sometimes happens in a farmhouse...)
I named her Rose-Marie Charlotte, because it was the prettiest name I could ever think of. She was a white cat but her tail was grey and she had a grey spot in the forehead as well. I was amazed that I could finally pursuade my mother (who hates cats) to allow me to take a cat to our home. So Rose-Marie Charlotte (or Rosi as we later called her) became officially mine.
Sometimes a life of a cat can be short. Rosi lived with me happily a couple of years but one day she was gone. I remember I searched for her two weeks. Then some ambulance guys told my mom that they had run over a cat near my home.

I took my second cat when I was 18. Her name was Katza and she had a lot of stripes ( I don't know if you call them in English stripes in this case). She was a fun loving cat - she just loved the cleaning days. She used to run on the carpet and then suddenly hit the brake so that the carpet was a mess. She also liked to wake me really early in the morning (like 5 AM). Unfortunately I had to give her to my great aunts Armi and Alli when I moved to Helsinki, but she lived a very nice life in the countryside. I quess it wouldn't been so nice in Helsinki in an appartment blog with allergic roommates.
Nasu kissa
This is photo of a cat called Nasu. She belongs to my brother-in-law. She doesn't like our dog Jekku very much. They don't understand each others languages - so I quess the best word to describe their relationship is the word "distant". They don't fight or anything - they can be together in the same room, but they don't go very near each other. Nasu is always very curious about what Jekku is doing and Jekku understands the Finnish word "Kissa" (Cat) well - he always starts to look around when someone says Kissa.

Chasing relatives in Ellis Island

I got an e-mail today from my relative Waino in Utah. He is the second cousin of my grandmother.
We found each other a couple of years ago - through internet of course. We have also met each other, he visited us in Finland summer 2003.
It was his grandmother Susanna who left Isokyrö, Finland over hundred years ago 1889 and travelled to USA. She married a Finnish man Jaakko Järvikorpi in Hanna, Wyoming in September 1892.

It's amazing what internet has done to genealogy. Finding your ancestors in church books online, tracking the descendants of the immigrated relatives.

If you are interested how to track relatives in USA, here are some websites which have helped me.

*Ellis Island passanger records
*Ancestry.com and US Census records
*Familysearch.org (Mormon site)

Tracking Finnish relatives in USA or Canada:
*Finnish institute of Migration (passport records online etc)
*The Genealogical society in Finland
Article by Olavi Koivukangas: Finns abroad