Wednesday, August 13, 2008

... whereas Rovaniemi is a bit ordinaire...

Utterly fascinating Sami culture museum. After that much-anticipated breakfast of fresh coffee with fresh milk, and a bowl of cloudberries, which were indeed luscious, how was Inari? A gem of a place. Can’t wait to go back to Lapland and maybe do some summer hiking and take another zillion photos.

We bought the Sami museum shop, you know. Everything from a fridge magnet to a piece of felt art. The (very young) shop assistant got more and more gob-smacked as I added piece after piece to the pile. But these things were worth getting! Unfortunately she was a) a hopeless packer, and one of my mooses will have to have his horn stuck up again; and b) she was so busy being gobsmacked and gormless, she actually left out an item, and I will have to write to them and see if they can send it on. Silly girl. And why didn’t *I* check? Because my clock-watching husband was in a lather in case we missed the bus to Rovaniemi - not a tour bus but a public one, so no waiting at the door while little B put her face on. And therefore, I didn’t watch closely as she packed up all the stuff.

We had a dreary afternoon on the bus (a coach) driving to Rovaniemi. We had a short lunch stop (coffee with cream and a doughnut, oh bliss, oh FAT). Not long after, the bus filled with French scouts returning to France from their summer holiday trekking. They were kind of noisy but not obnoxious. We had had enough of being squished when we arrived ... a 6 hour trip, counting the few little stops.

Our hotel is standard purrfectly alright hotel. No saunas or value-added stuff this time. And Rovaniemi is a harmless little town, new (rebuilt after WW11 - the Germans kindly reduced it to rubble when retreating), not very exciting, but on a pretty river bend, and clearly growing fast.. we went for a short stroll to find dinner - Subway, I’m afraid. It being Sunday night, everything else was either closed or just a bar, and I draw the line at liquid dinners.

Now we are watching on Finnish TV a very sweaty man conducting Beethoven’s 5th, rather a good way to end the evening.

Tomorrow we have to get up at 6am eeeeeeeek to get on a train at 7.15, which will take us to Helsinki. We have 6 days there, with friends to visit, and a professor of linguistics for M to meet, so I’m looking forward to some easy chat, some kulcha, and to being able to unpack completely as we did on the ship.

It’s going good.

Today brought to you by blasts of Prada from my shirt-front, which got rather hot in its thermal top (so John, I hope Liz can get the purrfume out when I return it, thanks so much for helping to keep me so warm!). That’s it, I can’t smell anything else and I don’t think there was any discernible eau-de-Finnish bus.


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