Monday, November 8, 2010

Every P-DAY is GREAT.....

We adopted a 'DAUGHTER' for the day......and she came along with us!

We had not been to downtown Helsinki in a few weeks and we were having withdrawals, so we decided it was a beautiful day to be outdoors....sunny skies but very, very cold. You can see the temperature from the thermometer below! We just bundled up....including our TOE WARMERS given to us by Tina. KIITOS PALJON Tina!
Now, our 'adopted' daughter. As we were leaving the Asuntola to head to the bus stop we started talking to a sweet young (21 years old) Russian gal who arrived this morning. She will be here all is SINGLE ADULT VIIKO. The Single Adults are coming from Russia, Lithuania, Estonia and of course Finland. A great group are going to be here!! LENA ASKHATOVA. She is from PERM RUSSIA.....check it out on the map. You will notice that it is on the other side of Russia. It look here 1 1/2 days by train to get to St. Petersburg. She rested up there for 3 days with a friend. Sunday night she took a bus from St. Petersburg arriving here in Helsinki this morning at 6:00 a.m. The picture below was taken of us as we were leaving the asuntola for the bus.
While we were riding the bus to downtown, Lena wanted to learn some Finnish. I am (an American) trying to teach a Russian some Finnish. Go figure....that is just the way it is here.....always some kind of language challenges! And they can be very interesting at times.
We checked out the TORI just to see if there was anything 'interesting' there. Even though it was a beautiful day, there were not many 'vendors'. BUT the SEAGULLS were out in force...notice that one above Wayne's head.
Looking toward the Russian Orthodox Church.....if you can see the gold-topped fence in the background, that is the President's residence. The gold just seemed to be shining nicely this morning.
After lunch at FAZER's (our favorite place to have lunch downtown....great homemade soup bar), we headed over to the CHURCH IN THE ROCK. Rightly named because it truly is IN rock! It is such a cool place.
Then we walked over to the HIETANIEMEN HAUTAUSMAA, a very large cemetery where the President's of Finland are buried along with a lot of war dead. We have been to this cemetery before at night when we placed candles on graves. We wanted to see it in the daylight. We are standing just outside the wall before going inside.
Wayne and I are standing at the grave of PRESIDENT KEKKONEN. He was President when Wayne was here as a young missionary 45 years ago. He was also very instrumental in having good relations between the Finnish Government and the Russian Government.
Next to the cemetery is a beautiful BEACH. Finland does not have many of those but this one is nice. I don't know that we have every walked on a sandy beach with the sand was crunchy from it being FROZEN....with frost and ice still on it.
Here is some of the ICE AND FROST. Even with the sun out today, it was cold enough and the sun never got high enough in the sky to melt any of it. This was taken at about 2:30 p.m. and the sun is beginning to set!
We walked over to the SIBELLIUS MONUMENT next. I have been wanting to go here for the past 18 months. We just never found the time to do it. Sibellius is a music composer. He is best known for writing FINLANDIA (or for us members of the church... "Be Still My Soul"). Wayne decided to lay on the rock to get the next shot!!
And....this is THE shot he got......what we won't do for the 'perfect shot'. Cool huh!
BUT....then he needed to get up.....with a little help from me! Thanks to Lena who was with us to get this shot!! Great job Lena!!
A little better shot of us by the monument.......
Back home about 4:30 p.m. with a pretty sunset of the temple! AAAHHHH.......
......what a GREAT P-Day....and Lena being with us made it even more fun!!!

Looking forward to a great week with the YOUNG SINGLE ADULTS from all over Russia and the Baltics!! Great young people.

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