Monday, May 9, 2016

Gorgeous spring weather in Helsinki

We had decided to get to St. Petersburg by flying to Helsinki and taking an overnight ferry from there. After settling into our Helsinki hotel we set off for an exploratory walk. It was quite a pleasure as there was no wind and it was quite warm. I had been to Helsinki in the late seventies or early eighties but I tonight discovered a much different city. Back then it was suffering economically and was quite dowdy and I remember a lot of unkempt parks. Tonight we found a modern, trendy city even if we couldn't find anything to eat at eleven at night.

The next day we explored the downtown area. I remembered the huge square from my previous trip. Somewhere on that square was an excellent restaurant called the Ritz where they served really good food. I remembered quite horrible food and soup with glops of powder in it and that was at a good hotel.

The Finns are known for their design. There were several Marimeko stores with their huge splashy patterned clothing. They weren't the only design store with the shops displaying trendy, fashionable and expensive clothes. The store I liked best had lots of cushions with pictures of scenes in Helsinki. Pictures were taken, photoshopped and then printed onto the pillow covers. But €150 was too rich for us. Still, it made us think about doing the same thing with our own photos.

Although the food was a little better this time, it still wasn't very good. Perhaps we were unlucky. By the middle of the afternoon we were ready to start our adventure. It was time to take a taxi to the St. Petersburg ferry.

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