London Calling

Welcome to my London blog! I'm Arja and in this blog I will share some of my experiences of London this May. I have a priviledge to participate in the English language course for Finnish journalists in London and this blog is about learning to write in English. Please feel free to correct my writing at any time. I hope I can convey some of the atmosphere and insights through this medium to those who are interested.

Month: March, 2013

Maundy Thursday in Helsinki 2013

Talven viimeinen hiihtolenkki_2013_1

There are still some snow in Helsinki but soon the sun will melt it away. After my last skiing day this winter I went to listen to the J.S. Bach’s St Matthew Passion in St. John’s Cathedral in Helsinki. The world famous barytone, Jorma Hynninen sang the role of Jesus in this masterwork for the last time as he is retiring from active singing career. Magnificent day off for me. Enjoy the last bits of winter and have a Happy Easter everybody.


The Spring is here

I’m sure that you in London are expecting the Spring finally bursting in as much as we here in Finland. Some days ago I read in a Finnish newspaper that an Englishman had sent an angry letter to the Finnish Embassy in London accusing us Finns for the harsh winter. Hmmm. The staff of the Embassy is planning to send a nice greeting from Finland to this active British citizen. However, I think we Finns cannot be accused for this climate phenomenon as attempting it might seem. We might have done something wrong but climate changes are not only in our control.

We will switch our clocks next weekend to the summer time so I think it was about time that some ice broke on the seashore of Helsinki today, Tuesday, 26th March 2013. This link below shows how there were a hockey game going on on the sea two days ago and how today the ice is gone. It’s still pretty cold here during the nights but above 0 °C in daytime.

Be patient, spring is nearly here – and there!äsjää+vaihtui+avovedeksi+Helsingin+edustalla/a1364267115442

To choose a Museum in London


Last time I was in London I visited the Tate Modern, The National Gallery and The National Portrait Gallery. Since I love portraits – both written and painted/photographed – the last one of the three I’ll probably visit once again in May. However, I thought I also might visit the Victoria & Albert Museum, not necessarily because I’d be so interested in porcelaine and china, but because I happened to read A.S. Byatt’s The children’s book last year. It was wonderful fiction about the British Arts and Crafts movement and the artists of that time – and about the sad ending of that golden age with the first world war. Last time I actually stayed next to the Victoria & Albert Museum but didn’t even consider visiting it! Both V&A Museum and the Natural History Museum were too much at that time. I watched the skating rink in the garden of the latter and just passed by for other engagements and bookshops. In any case, that’s why I love literature: it makes you want things you never thought you would. It opens up the worlds you never knew before.

Besides the V&A Museum I might visit the British Museum, at least some interesting exhibitions there, like this one:

I have been to the British Museum once – in the early 90’s, but now I’m more into something more intimate and less ancient. The above link interests me though. I’m sure the British Museum has something interesting to offer even if I only have some spare time; besides it’s in the neighbourhood anyway.

The Saatchi Gallery was mentioned by my colleague today, and perhaps, dont’t know yet, I might go there too. More likely, I’m going to be so busy with studying and moving from one place to another, that I might just visit some smaller museums or galleries ex temporé, without planning it beforehand.

There are some writer homes that interest me (like Keats House) not to mention Shakespeare’s Globe theatre. I guess, in the end, I’ll just follow my intuition and pop in to some place that comes to my way. Better keep my eyes open.

Still two months till London… Counting days. Take care until the next time.

Let it snow in March

We’re all looking forward to spring here but last night the nature showed us our place when it comes to weather. We have shoveled a lot of snow today… This picture is taken in the morning by the Helsinki Cathedral’s staircase. Due to hard wind the snow piled up randomly: it looks like there was at least a metre of snow falling from the sky last night but actually there wasn’t quite that much.  However, we had a beautiful sunny winter day today.

And this is how we deal with in Finland.