Friday, September 29th, 2017 – Friday, October 6th, 2017
Jyväskylä to Helsinki- Normally you can take the train and if you ask me you should always take the damn train. We took the bus, which on a Friday can be all kinds of packed. One of the coolest things about the bus is you really get to observe what Finlands like. So lots of trees, lakes and well nature. Its really nice to see the changing of the leaves, all the colours. Whenever you take public transportation, you run the risk of sitting close to an idiot. We had a guy who just watched Youtube videos the entire ride… without headphones.
Helsinki was the first city I got to when coming on, exchange, it’s beautiful. Right on the water with a vibrant culture and teaming with life. If you’ve never been here some advice. Fins are great, but they can be “weird” That is the way they come off. In Finland, the concept of small talk doesn’t exist. Personal space is a must here. Take, for example, when I get on the bus to school no one wants to sit next to each other. You’ll have people stand rather than sit next to someone else. If you don’t believe me check out, @finnishnightmaresofficial or @veryfinnishproblems on Instagram, you’ll get a good laugh out of it, and I can vouch for how accurate it is.
It is rather easy to get them to come out of their shells though.. sorta, beer. Kippis means Cheers in Finnish so if you want to get to know them or talk to them or have them talk to you maybe hold up two beers and say Kippis! I’ve gotten off track, sorry. We didn’t stay long in Helsinki, our ferry to Tallinn left at midnight, and we arrived at around 9:15pm. Just enough time to grab McDonalds and head to the ferry terminal. If you’re one of my North American readers, you’ll know that McDonald’s back home can be …ASS especially if you’re not drunk. Finnish McDonald’s gets the thumbs up from me. I recommend the share box, you get wings… WINGS!! Onion Rings, and Nuggets. Whats not to love? Anyway, at the ferry terminal, one of the members of the group pranced through the gates and security were waiting for him. Just a random search. Naturally, we made fun of him, and it was nice that it wasn’t me being randomly selected. Adel Darwish Mohammed feels like this,
Helsinki to Tallinn
Sorry, couldn’t resist. The Ferry is awesome and it even has a grocery store/liquor store.
Alcohol is pretty cheap on the ferry, but in Tallinn, it’s cheaper. Its why Fins go there and exchange students. So Tallinn is basically what Montreal is for Torontonians. Party Hardy beautiful city. Cabs in Tallinn are cheap … just not the ones outside the ferry terminal. Our hostel was close to Old Tallinn and some bars and clubs. I’d recommend Euphoria (Roosikrantsi 4, 10119 Tallinn, Estonia) Its real simple, really chill and a good price. After we settled we went out to a club, Münt (Müürivahe 22, 10140 Tallinn, Estonia.) They had €1-2 drinks, so needless to say there was a lot of people and a lot of security. So what I’ve been noticing is that there are smoking rooms everywhere you go in Europe. In clubs, bars, even the airports. I ended up in one at the club and while I was sitting there with my friend the fucking ashtray exploded.
The next morning was spent recovering from hangovers, I felt great because at some point during the night I switched to tonic water and limes 😉 Why? Drinking is fun, hangovers are the bane of my fucking existence, and I’d rather crawl naked across a kilometer of broken glass. Very descriptive I know. Anyway another recommendation, Kompressor (Rataskaevu 3, 10123 Tallinn, Estonia.) Its a cafe that makes the best god damn pancakes in the world … in Tallinn. Its cheap and the portions are massive. Not traditional North American pancakes, you can get them topped or filled with a variety of different things. I had the cream cheese and chicken 👍🏾
I had this feeling the entire time I was there that I was being watched. Easy to explain, there are churches EVERYWHERE! Like this one, sadly not everyone respects churches or cathedrals. On the side of this one, someone spray painted graffiti. It looked like someone had tried to remove it but they couldn’t.
So yeah you are being watched… By God! My favourite thing about Tallinn was the variety of food options. So I’m Trinidadian, that means I get a lot of spice in my food. Finland … Does ketchup count as a spice? That night we went to an Indian restaurant, and it hit me. Keep in mind I’ve been away from home for about 3 months. Tallinn was also my first stop of my little holiday, but I sat in this Indian restaurant, and I immediately missed home. Toronto is the most diverse city, I can get food from every part of the world. I’m very fortunate to live there. I’ll elaborate more on this in the last part of this series. Myself Shawn and Jari spent the night out later than the rest of the group, I had a flight to Helsinki at 6:15am then I’d get a connecting flight to Manchester. We went to a hookah bar, Hookah Palace (Roosikrantsi 3, 10119 Tallinn, Estonia) which was across the street from the hostel. €3 Drinks, I recommend the cider and €8 Hookah, great atmosphere. We smoked and drank and had a great time.
At 4:00am I got in a cab and headed to the airport. It cost €8 to get there. Hail a cab don’t get into the ones that are just waiting around! The Tallinn Airport is small, and when I got there, I was a little drunk and tired and had to wait what felt like the most extended hour and a half of my life.
Tallinn to Helsinki
This is the last part of part 2. I got to Helsinki and had to go through customs, the customer officer laughed at me because I’d forgotten to sign my passport. Rookie mistake. The highlight of the Helsinki airport, I found a Starbucks and paid a stupid amount of money for a medium coffee… sorry Grande coffee. It warms my heart to know that Starbucks is expensive everywhere. It’s a healthy relationship to have.
Alright! Thanks for reading. Part 3 will be up later this week, or tomorrow, depending on how I feel!