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A hot summer day in Italy, 2003 (somewhere between Rome and Naples) I didn’t really know where I was, or where I was going. I was following this recommendation and that, from acquaintances I’d met along the way. A German girl had said the Amalfi coast was worth seeing but I must’ve taken a wrong turn somewhere. I never went quite that south. Sitting in a local bus squirming along a country road with its ups and downs and tight lefts and rights, I was keenly looking out the window for any...

I recently read a post with the words “The boys in my world are tender…”and, like some words do, they stuck in my head. The boys in my world are tender, too. They are only 15 months old. They like to watch little sparrows and plump pigeons search for food in the grassy green patches of our residential area. Some of the pigeons are white ones and my boys are enchanted by their feathery footsteps and bouncy little jumps. When we go for a walk, we often stop for a good 15 minutes to admire...

If you happen to be in Helsinki, Finland for the first time and only have a few hours to spare, how should you use your time? This post was requested by Véronique from The Uprooted Wanderers,who will soon be traveling through Helsinki with her family. If you ask me, I’d suggest you take it easy, soak in the city’s architecture and atmosphere, sit down at a cafe and watch people pass by. Helsinki’s center has some interesting architecture as well as plenty of cafes. It’s like it was just made...

So… I was sitting there in my pajamas (aka day outfit) snacking on chocolate and brushing some fallen bits off the computer, when I read Véronique’s tongue-in-cheek suggestion. To do a blog post about the time I wasn’t glamorous enough. This was just too delicious a topic not to bite, I chuckled to myself. I took another bite of chocolate. As someone who recently realized she has been going outside, in public, in sports leggings with no intention to do any sports, and also without any makeup...

I hope you don’t mind working on that presentation at home next weekend… There’s so much to do during work hours that you won’t have time The deadline is on Monday but you can work on it when your kids are having dinner, right? And here’s your company phone Keep it with you at all times so you can answer if I call I have a tendency to think about work in the evenings and I might want to discuss something urgent I’m also giving your number to all our customers It’s already on the...

I read a beautifully written blog post, urging the reader to go and explore the world, before it’s all gone, as it will be. Nature, wildlife… But I feel like saying, don’t go! Let’s leave something for the future generations. Let’s not trample upon it all right now. Let’s water it and give it space to grow, undisturbed. I know, I know… this is selfish of me, since I’ve already traveled and explored. I’ve already gotten my fair share of these experiences. The rest is much appreciated...

2004… in an office building in one of the northern suburbs of Paris… “Listen, Snow” said my Finnish boss, young like me but better versed in the mysterious ways of the French. She had been there longer. I was a brand new intern. “Some of our colleagues are wondering if you hate them…” “Whaaat? What do you mean?” I managed. “Well, you haven’t given them all bises each morning.” “But I do give them bises!Not everyone of course but the ones I chat with and who sit nearby.” “That’s exactly...

Somewhere, on an island, the wet sand is pink… the waves tickle the feet of three little birds… that run away, only to turn around and run back again. Isn’t that what we humans do too? We test and we try, ponder hard if we dare dip our toes into the next new thing… We can never know all the outcomes of the all the possible what if’s. All of those little decisions that led to the big ones – how different everything would be if we had crossed the street five minutes earlier or...

Last weekend, the soft summer heat took a step back and allowed an autumnal breath of fresh air to enter. I even think I saw some leaves change color overnight. For the first time in over a month, I was cold and unprepared. My one-year-olds were looking at their long-sleeved shirts in wonder, like seeing them for the first time. But it was a very fun weekend. I had an old friend visit me from Germany and I got to play tourist in my own home town. It was a wake-up call! Some things I...

Writer’s block. Blogger’s shock. Mind lock. What should I write about? How amazed and happy I am about the warm and sunny July we’ve had over here in this arctic corner of the world? How my daily coffee intake is reduced to 1 or 2 espressos, now that my vitamin D levels have been refilled by sunlight… How my two little sweethearts have just learned to walk, gushing out in sheer elation as they toddle along. How they enjoy swinging, but there’s only one playground nearby with swings in the...

When you travel solo for a long time, living in foreign places, roaming freely from here to there, there’s a certain freedom to it. It can be elating. But after a while it can also start to feel a bit pointless, like you are lost at sea and need some direction… an itinerary, a reason for being. A travel companion might cure that, as well as new friends you’ve met traveling or simply something like finding a job abroad. For me, it resulted in restlessness, which was slightly exhausting and...

This view fascinated me for an unknown reason when visiting Genoa a couple of years ago. It wasn’t until my friend pinpointed it that I understood why – two different eras collide, harmoniously, like these pillars were always meant to house vespas and...

Fairytale life Snaps with my phone while hanging out with my two one-year-olds this summer… strolling around Helsinki. Serenity and imagination I have to say, we have had some very nice weather this year – and we deserve it after so many rainy summers! Sunshine and warmth are not to be taken for granted in this climate. “?” Sometimes you don’t need all the answers Friday 13th was yesterday, and I had a great day – the boys entertained their dad while I went swimming in an outdoors pool...

Porvoo is a small town a short drive from Helsinki, Finland’s capital. It’s mostly known as a tourist stop for its tiny Old Town with traditional wooden houses. There is a church that dates from the 13th century. As for me, I associate Porvoo with a tourism and hospitality school which many of my ex-collegues in the travel industry had studied at. Back when I was choosing my future career as a young adult, some twenty years ago, Porvoo was the only option for tourism studies (that, and...

Time for a walk… Yes, I have my camera, do you? Let’s go. Thanks for joining...