Sunday, April 7, 2013

After two days of travel--10 hour flight to London on Saturday, then a 3 hour flight from London to Helsinki and a 2.5 hour train ride, I am in my flat in Jyvaskyla! While tiring, the trip was uneventful.  The problem is the 10 hour time difference from California.  That's why I'm writing this at 4:48 AM (Monday) since it is only "supper time" (6:48 PM Sunday) for my body and brain.

Here are a few images from the last leg of my trip. I took a bus from Helsinki airport to a nearby train station at Tikkurila which you can see below.  There are some smudges of snow still on the ground and as we traveled north, the snow, at times was falling densely (1-2 feet on the ground) among the birch trees and on the farms. The countryside was beautiful! I couldn't get a picture because the train was moving so fast and the weak light required the shutter open too long, creating blurred images.

 The people here have a reputation for being silent and removed.  They appear removed, but when you engage them, all the folks with whom I've talked have been kind, open, helpful and engaged. However, they ARE quiet!  The Helsinki airport was almost silent.  In the US, crowds are noisy and when standing line (like at passport control) individual conversations can be heard since Americans tend to talk so loudly.  Not so here, and I appreciate it!

Arrival at 13 Puistokatu:
 Into the front door, up to the third floor and...
Here's home for the next three weeks. Very nice digs.
 The university has a block of flats to house people like me. It is a nice little furnished apartment, which is located about 1 mile from the main part of the campus.
Tomorrow (Monday) is free so I can get acclimated, but I will be meeting my sponsor for lunch. He greeted me at the airport, drove me to the flat, and walked me to a nearby grocery store to get some food to start. He's arranging meetings and observations for me with all of his other academic and family responsibilities. I really appreciate his help.

Time to try to sleep a bit!

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