20 April 2015

From Turku to Rovaniemi

As I am always in the swim (I have no idea did I use that term correctly, I just tried to google for a fitting idiom...) here is my moving story, only two and a half weeks late! Well, it is not like it is a post that should be on real-time anyway.

So, I use to live in a city called Turku, which is located in the southwest tip of Finland right by the coast. I want to write more specific post or two about Turku, especially from the point of view of a visitor, so I will not talk about the city more right now. Let's just say I lived there for nearly five and a half years. I do not have any deep connection with the city, but it must be the best city I have lived in so far.

Here are few photos of the city center. I took them the day I moved away:

Looking at the market square.
Also looking the the market square, though from the opposite corner. I have walked home this way so many many times.
The market square.
One side of the Hansa shopping center.
This beautiful building was almost at the neighbour of the house I lived in and I still have no idea what it is. I believe it is some sort of a museum.
My home street. I lived in the pink building ahead.
The view when stepping outside from the building I lived in. Also the length of street that I walked to most in Turku; my main grocery store is visible as the third building on left and the library is just one block from there.
The view from my former window.

By the looks my latest apartment was fairly good, but honestly it was the worst one I have lived in; ie. zero sound proofing and a neighbour that played music loudly most of the nights, mold, which possibly (most likely) caused me all kinds of health problems (about which I will soon write more about), et cetera. I so will not miss this place, but since it was a really old building, from the 1920s I believe, it was so much more beautiful than more recent boring buildings:

Doors in the building. My former apartment on the left.
The building's doorway.

I had my father and my brother helping me with the moving. Since they came from hundreds of kilometers away, my father drove to my brother's place at the previous day and then they drove to Turku early the next morning. My father had borrowed a van from his friend, but unfortunately it was a tad bit too small and we have to leave three chairs behind. Which was not such a big loss since they were in fairly bad shape already. Amazingly my moving helpers managed to fit everything else in the car.

I myself packed rest of the stuff inside and tried to save my energy (referring to the health problems mentioned above) for the last (or second last actually) high school exam. Luckily my last exam, that I needed to do at the school, was on the moving day and not the day after. This meant I could move away smoothly and not have to stay at a hotel or something for one night and then follow my stuff with train.

This is how the packing process looked like:


After I was done with my exam (from which I got one of my best grades in a subject that has been hardest for me!), the moving party set away from Turku. And I said goodbyes to the city, not knowing I would be going back there in couple of months for a university entrance examination, haha. We drove to my brother's home almost 400 kilometers away. It was already very late when we got there and my brother had to get up really early to go to work. Me and my father had to also get up early, but we got couple more hours of sleep than my brother. Which is good since we had a long drive ahead...

Before we left the area where my brother lives, we made a short stop at my brother's ex's home. There I met my niece for the first time. She was born almost a year ago, but since they live so far away, I have never visited them before. Evaluation: my niece loves to rip and eat my long hair. My father's long beard also got its share of rips. :)

From there we got approximately 550 kilometers to go. We had to make couple stops at Oulu and Kemi in order to get me food and an internet connection, since we realized we did not have enough time to get to Rovaniemi (where I was moving) in time before stores close. Besides those and few mandatory service station / rest stops, this is what most of the day looked like:

On the road again...
550 kilometers is a LONG drive, especially if you are tired and have driven almost the same amount the day before (= overall app. 1000 kilometers). It was a bit easier for me, since I did not drive the car (I have never gotten a driver's license), but still extremely boring. There was not even a CD player in the car. And it was very crowded; the van's back was filled to the last centimeter. After the trip to the grocery store in Kemi, we had to fit in four full plastic bags of food and some of my stuff to the cabin. They did fit in, but all the space to move even a little was gone:

My leg space too was shared.

At least I got some delicious salad from a store in Oulu:

Yes, I am one of those people that just MUST photograph their food.

The photo couple of photos ago showed what the almost entire way looked like. There really is nothing interesting on the roads in Finland and we did not even drive through any cities really. (Though we drove through the city of Jyväskylä on the first moving day at very late hour. I have to admit it was very beautiful with all the lights and nice buildings). The most interesting thing for me was the endless amount of wind farm windmills (or how do you call them?) around Kemi. I absolutely love those. Besides being a good source of energy, I find them looking very pretty. Obviously I had the spend lots of time photographing them (not like there was anything else to do anyway):

A small collage of some of my photos of the wind farms.

Finally 20:28 o'clock there was this familiar sign welcoming us:

On a side note: a camera's flash and these signs do NOT make a working combination.

We still had over an hour to drive, since the city of Rovaniemi is huge (by area) and the sign is at the edge of the limits and we were heading to my father's place which is far from the city limit where we entered the city. But at least it marked the last leg of the drive!

I am originally from Rovaniemi (the city of Santa Claus at the polar circle in Finnish Lapland), so I was sort of coming back home. Even though I really do not feel this city as my home anymore; I have been gone for so long, that everything has changed and honestly I do not thrive here. Luckily this is only a temporary living situation.

The reason behind of moving away from Turku was that I wanted to save in rent money. I do not need an apartment here in Rovaniemi, which means I can save a little. I am hoping to get in to a university in Autumn, so every cent is welcome addition to my savings. And also since the apartment in Turku was causing me health problems, I really needed to move away from there. And on top of that, I need to store my belongings in my father's storage anyway, since if I will move to Denmark in few months, I will definitely not be dragging all of this with stuff me. So, moving here made sense in many ways.

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