Wednesday, April 26, 2017

A quick trip to southern Finland

Hello people!

Last weekend I went for a quick trip to southern Finland and, to be more exact, the Satakunta region. I went there to help out my friend Firith with a Japanese culture event in Eura's library but while there I also did some other stuff and had a good time. ^^

I started my trip southwards on Thursday, 20th April. I woke up early as shit on the morning, took my belongings and walked to the bus station on the other side of town. The bus took me to Oulu and there I stepped into another bus, Onnibus, where I'd sit for the next 8+ hours. I managed to grab a seat in the far back of the bus, which meant that I could lower the seat without having to worry that the person behind me would get angry, lol.
17:35 local time the bus arrived at Rauma, where Firith picked me up. He had told me that to recognize Rauma I should look for a stream flowing through the city and a Prisma and Citymarket really close to one another, but all I had time to see was McDonald's and a church, lol. Also, for some unknown reason I always imagined that his Ford Mondeo was red but it's actually a kind of weird sand-colored car, I don't know. xD We put my stuff in the car and walked over to the Hesburger before we left Rauma. I hadn't eaten since like 04:00 on the morning/night (non-stop sitting in a bus) and was really hungry. Fuck yeah cheeseburgers!

After the burgers Firith had some kind of boxing practice at a nearby gym and so we headed there. The car trip there wasn't ordinary though. You see, on our way there we ended up in a close encounter with a couple mooses – a female moose suddenly crossed the road a few meters in front of us, with a second younger one staying in the trench. Pikkasen kuumotti. Thank lord the calf(?) didn't follow or it would have bombed into the flank of the car. It's not like the first time it happens to me but it's always scary because mooses are some big-ass animals... and I'm not badass like Masa.
But yeah, we got to the gym in one piece, including the car. Firith started his practice while I basically just sat in a corner and watched him punch people meanwhile old Nightwish songs were blasting from the speakers and I was singing them from memory. It was the Century Child CD, which I hadn't listen to for probably close to 10 years and, even though I couldn't remember all of the song names I still remembered a fair chunk of the lyrics – memory is an amazing thing.

Once we finally got to Firith's place I dropped my stuff upstairs and I think the remainder of the day we just talked randoms and went to sleep. I got to sleep on his bed while he took the couch because it's so narrow. Good thing, because even in the bed I tossed around so much in my sleep that I hit down several items that were lying on the bedside table. Twice. I sleep like a starfish, don't judge me. :'D 

On Friday morning we prepped for the event and later on Firith took me to a nearby stable, as promised. I didn't know what to expect but it was really chill and fun. I'm just guessing but it was a small stable with some ponies so I assume it might have been owned by his friend, whom we picked up on the way. I had never met this friend before but she was really easy to talk to and really funny!

Firith's friend's dogs. Nakkeja.
We got to the small stable and I watched Firith and his friend brush and feed two of the ponies. I had never been so close to a horse –or a pony– before. That horse smell though. The ponies still had their winter coats on, if I recall right, and I actually tried touching them carefully and... I must say that they were a lot softer than what I had thought. ;_; So fluffy!
I feel dumb for not realizing back then that I maybe should have taken a photo of the ponies but oh well, no can do now. I did take a photo of one of the two stable cats; they were both surprsisingly social and really cute. I'm starting to really like cats. One of them just walked up to me, laid down and did this:

I need attention, meow ~
So stinking cute. ;_; This cat doesn't seem to have any survival instincts at times though – he laid down lazily right behind the pony and the pony was backing and hitting the ground with its hooves!
The other cat I don't have any pictures of but he also had a striped coat except that some parts of his body were completely white, really cute as well. This second cat also came and stroked/bumped my feet with his head, aww!

Once Firith and his friend were done grooming the ponies Firith's friend suddenly told me to sit in the wagon/cart thingy that she had attached to the pony. I was like "whaaaat? o.o" because I had not been told anything before we got to the stable. :'D I'm not sure if this was meant to be a surprise or if it was spontaneous but I must say that it was awesome to be pulled by a horse pony.
10 out of 10, would ride again.

And off we go!
We rode through open plains and a forest path in different horse gaits. The weather was nice and the whole experience was amazing and so relaxing. ♥ I want to do it again! I've always liked horses anyway and, at one point when I was really young, I wanted to take riding classes but it was too expensive. 

After the stable episode Firith took me for a quick visit to another one of his friends.  When we got back to his home we watched an episode of Vain elämää, mainly because it was Olli Lindholm's ('s singer and front man) day and I've liked their music since I was a kid. Both my parents like so I grew up with their songs, haha. 
At some point we went to meet Gure and on the same go we decided to go to this one "haunted house". Firith and Gure told me some experiences they had of this old house (I think it belonged to Gure's grandma or something, not sure) and it felt a bit spooky when we got there. It was dark and this house was on a field in the middle of nowhere. You could tell that they both were nervous about entering but we had to go there because they needed to cut a wig for the event and we had no other place we could do this in. As soon as the lights were on I didn't feel uneasy or threatened by anything – it just felt and looked like any other house that smelled like old people. There were even cookies in the pantry!
Then again, they both told me that the scary stuff happens after midnight and we were there earlier on the evening/night. I don't remember if it was Firith or Gure who said that they had heard scraping/clawing noises behind the walls after midnight etc... Spoopy time, bitch! :D

The remainder of the night me and Firith spent playing some Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate. He's quite new to the game franchise (and to console gaming in general) so I helped him out and did the whole MonHun senpai thing. xD

On Saturday we were busy with Euran mangapäivä (Eura's manga day), the Japanese culture event I mentioned. It was a 4-hour event and I worked there as a photographer and also acted as a second judge for the cosplay contest. I won't talk much about the event because, if you are interested, you can read about it over at my cosplay blog. ^^

Beautiful old dress on display at the library. Kansallispuku?
edit: se on Euran kansallispuku, "Euran emännän puku". :)
After the event we went to buy a pizza and back at Firith's home I started to get my stuff in order because I'd had to leave the same night; couldn't really afford to stay extra because I have school waiting for me. I had a night bus so we had some time to hang out and we played some more Monster Hunter and talked randoms for the remaining hours.

My bus left from Rauma at 22:55. Sleeping on a bus is so damn hard and thus, once I arrived at Oulu 07:05 on Sunday morning, I looked like the remains of a zombie apocalypse. My train to Kemi wouldn't leave until 12:27 and so I ended up walking to the train station (one of the few places open on Sunday morning) and there I spurgu'd for a couple hours. For those not in the know, the word "spurgu" is Finnish slang for a drunk and/or homeless man and sometimes they can be found sleeping at train stations and the like. So yeah, I got my first spurgu experience and it was... interesting. xD
Good thing the train station was mostly empty so early on the morning and I managed to sleep a couple hours before noisy people started gathering. Once it got too busy I got up and left for centrum to kill some time. I headed for Valkea shopping center and luckily the doors were open so I could sit there and wait, although all the shops seemed closed and like they wouldn't open until 11:00. I had to wait one hour before anything opened and I really needed to pee. I didn't want to pay 1 € to pee at the train station when there's free toilets in Valkea, lol.

I went to the toy store as soon as I was done in the bathroom. Nostalgy bit me and I bought some Pokémon TCG cards and then I had to start walking back to the train station again.

This was the only XY Evolutions themed blister pack left.
I opened it a couple days later at home (the suspense!) and I got a reverse foil Magikarp and holofoil Gyarados in the same booster! xD Opening these boosters felt so nostalic because it's like a upgraded rerelease of the very first Pokémon trading cards – the cards are otherwise updated but the original artwork from the very first cards is kept the same. The damage dealt by the attacks etc have been updated to be playable with the current TCG standards but oh my lord, just being able to buy and see the original cards in a new updated package, with the old holofoil etc is really something cool. ;_; I need to get more of these Evolution boosters...

Before my train to Kemi came I sat and waited for it outside at track 3 in the station. I noticed that in the distance there was an extra fancy VR train cart...

We are all pieces of art. ♥
I've never seen one like that before! All the other carts on the same train were normal. I wonder if there's more of them on other trains around Finland...

~~~

Okay, so that's pretty much all that I had to say. 
I might have forgotten to mention something but oh well. xD I got back home safely and it was a fun, albeit short, trip.

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