Spent last weekend in Finland, visiting my cousin Catriona, who as an artists residency in the small town of Rauma. Went to one of the opening nights of the ARS2006 art show in Helsinki. Rather excellent! Outside in Helsinki the temperature was well below zero. Minus 16! Icicles formed on my eyelashes, and the moisture in my nose was freezing hairs together. Quite amazing. We stayed with some friends who lived on an island. Normally it is necessary to row to the island, but the Baltic was frozen over so we had to walk across the ice. Fantastic.
Rauma itself was like something from an Aki Kaurismï¿½ki film – rather grey (ok of course it was clouded over and freezing cold) and depressing. It has a historic centre with streets of colourfully painted wooden houses I found quite remeniscant of Vermont and New Hampshire.
Photos of the trip can be found in a SmugMug gallery I made.