As Seen In Finland

1st February 2015

Processed with VSCOcam with a5 presetWhile most of the other students from my year chose warm destinations like Spain, Turkey and US, I went to Finland for my exchange semester. Why? It was the only place that offered the course I wanted (music management) and it seemed a country I wanted to explore on a long term basis. Today I am sharing some interesting/typical things I ran into.

Processed with VSCOcam with a5 presetYou might not think there’s anything weird about the photo above, but what if I tell you those slot machines are located in a supermarket? And they are everywhere: from restaurants to local stores. In Finland they love their slot machines and it can be compared to lotteries in other countries (though they also have lotteries). The money that is made from gambling and lottery is used for non-profit organizations.

Processed with VSCOcam with a5 presetBecause one door is too mainstream for Finland. I can image countries where it’s freezing cold have these types of doors.

Why a drying rack by the sink when you can have a cabinet where you can put dishes to dry? I still miss them every day.

Processed with VSCOcam with a5 presetParking spaces comes with car engine heating systems which is more than needed in winter.

Processed with VSCOcam with a5 presetMämmi is probably the most unusual dessert I tried in Finland, it’s a traditional Finnish Easter dessert (usually eaten with vanilla ice-cream or sweet cream) that you will see everywhere ahead of Easter. Some love it and some just don’t, but everyone will talk to you about it and try to make you have some, just to see your reaction . It looks like brownies, but tastes nothing like it, it tastes like dry gluten and wheat free bread. Once your brain realises it’s not brownies and you add enough ice-cream it’s kind of ok. But one portion was enough for me.

Processed with VSCOcam with a5 presetUK has Cadbury. Germany has Kinder. Austria has Milka. Switzerland has Lindt aaaaand Finland has Fazer. And Fazer do good chocolate, but the most interesting thing they make are handmade Mignon chocolate eggs (filled with almond-hazelnut nougat inside a real eggshell) which you can buy around Easter.

Processed with VSCOcam with a5 presetWho ever said barbecuing should only be done on a sunny summer day?

Processed with VSCOcam with a5 presetIt’s common to have a warm meal during lunch which usually comes a drink. Now, Kalja or alcohol free beer isn’t necessarily unusual but it’s just weird that one can get it in the university cafeteria.

Processed with VSCOcam with a5 presetI still haven’t figured out which two cards you can use at cash points.

Processed with VSCOcam with a5 presetDepression is a big issue in Finland, another thing is that the Finnish are not great talkers, so that’s where a Hali Card (hug card) comes in. It’s basically the business card for an organisation that promotes and supports students’ mental well-being handed out a few times at my university, although I haven’t seen anyone show one in exchange for a hug or two it’s a great way to ask for help without posting vague Facebook statuses.

11 thoughts on “As Seen In Finland

  1. Aisyah

    Ahhh Finland has always been a country I would like to visit!! It sounds like such a beautiful country but I’m so intrigued by their long winters and summers. I take it from your pictures you were there during winter! Was it difficult to cope?

    Enjoyed this post a great deal! 🙂
    xx

    Reply
  2. Elsie @ Sharing Healthiness

    I love this! I have been to Finland before and I loved it there! Those cards are such a great initiative. I remember seeing those cabinets and the double doors! I didin’t have the chance to try the Easter dessert but it looks delicious! 🙂

    Reply
  3. Rachel

    I’m utterly obsessed with Finland, and slightly disappointed to find out I did not know about the hug card! Oh my goodness, that is amazing!
    I love the dish draining cupboards, it was a real thrill to see an actual real one when I visited! (I’m a geeky washerupperer)
    Did you learn much Finnish while you were there? I’m trying to learn it, it’s so beautiful and different.

    Reply
  4. Christabel

    Finland! So glad I came across your blog via Bloglovin’. Finland is joint top of my countries to visit and this looks so lovely. Cool post! (no pun intended, dear me) x

    Reply

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