Change: Slowly but surely
It’s the end of March and what seems to be the end of good weather alongside it. Though the weather is certainly getting warmer it means I practically swim to university everyday with all the snow melting. But still, it’s great to see the days getting longer, by almost 8 minutes every day! It reminds of the month of August I spent here, there were times we decided to cook dinner before heading to the city, only to realise of course that it was in fact approaching midnight. I guess problems arise, especially for the avid sleepers amongst us, such as myself, when you see the sunlight through your curtains at what I like to call stupid o clock.
So, with the snow melting so quickly, I decided to seize the opportunity and go on a skiing weekend to Luosto, organised by ESN. There were approximately 26 of us, with a few more people arriving later and I didn’t really know what to expect. There were of course a few friends that had booked with me but the majority of the people I hadn’t spent much time with and so to begin with I was a bit sceptic. We all arrived at a pretty impressive 26 person cabin, fully furnished, with a sauna, a fireplace and a great Lappish feel, automatically reducing my scepticism. The first night consisted of playing outdoor games in the snow, and somehow illegally climbing a skiing slope in the middle of the night with sledges, being told to hide in the forest of course if we saw the lights of a tractor. Swiftly moving on, we had in fact organised a few hours of skiing at least, for the following morning, but as a group of 26 students it’s only natural we don’t stick to our plans and leave a little later. Having never skied before in my life I was little nervous to start, but it was great to have a skiing instructor with us in the group who was more than helpful, and I guess incredibly patient with my pitiful cries of help when attempting to ski. Nevertheless, I gradually gained a little more confidence and soon began to enjoy the whole experience. Returning back to the cabin we were ready for a great night in, cooking and enjoying each other’s company. I guess now would be a good time to mention the one and only rule we were told to follow whilst on the trip: “What goes on in Luosto, stays in Luosto” – all I can say is that I was impressed at how well we all got along, no connotations intended there, and how such trips are a great opportunity to get to know those individuals whom you’ve never really had the chance or time to talk to before. And so I returned to Rovaniemi with a wonderful experience, which I guess was amplified by the fact that I went with no real expectations and just the intention to enjoy myself.
A few weekends after, a few friends and I decided to take a day trip to Kemi to visit the much heard of snow castle. Arriving on a Sunday meant a very deserted Kemi, but we didn’t let it dampen our spirits and headed for the port close to where the castle was situated. The snow castle is open every year, where every year both the architecture and the theme vary - this year the theme was “comics”. Within the structure itself there is a snow hotel, a snow restaurant, a snow chapel together with several themed rooms. The intricacy of the work was very impressive and the sheer effort that must have been invested in such work was axiomatic; a true showcase of architectonic snow-work of the local constructors.