Over the Atlantic
|Somewhere over the Netherlands.|
Hectic moments at Oulu airport. I’ve packed my bag to the limits and the lady at the check-in looks like she’s not giving mercy to anyone. Luckily enough I pass the weight limit with many grams. I’m using my ninja-skills also at the security-check with my overweight hand luggage – laptop and charger separately through the x-ray machine. I can sigh in relief when we get to sit to the airplane.
Before I can say Äteritsiputeritsipuolilaudatsijänkä we’re waiting for our flight from Heathrow to Montreal. The seven-hour-flight to Montreal-Trudeau –airport goes faster than I ever imagined. Flight attendants serving your favourite alcohol drinks and watching the newest movies before they are even published in Finland makes the flight go fast. Nobody took me to the cockpit even though I must have looked like a happy little child.
At the airport there is a driver waiting for us as well as the happy border security personnel. Apparently my ryebread bags don’t cause any harm to the Canadian food industry’s security so I can step freely into Canada. Driver chases time and death by speeding to Valcourt like locals do. At the destination there is an excited gentleman from our future neighborhood welcoming us. He shows us our small half-basement apartment with a creaking floor and a plentiful room height of around two meters.
When the sun rises we can finally see where we ended up – where are the skyscrapers of the big world? Instead of those after rubbing my eyes I can see this stereotypical American suburb. One look up and we can see the Canadian maple-trees. Our neighbor took us for a ride through Valcourt…which took maybe 10 minutes. Valcourt is literally a town of around 3000 people and one BRP-factory. A little trip to outside of Valcourt reveals that landscape is actually quite familiar to some parts of Finland. We’re living near the companion of sheep and cows which isn’t shocking for a Finnish hillbilly.
|Few miles from Valcourt.|
Apparently the first thing that visitors should do in Quebec area is to try the famous poutine (though we ate pizza first). It is basically French fries with a lot of cheese on top and hot sauce added so the cheese melts and mixes with fries. My experience can be seen in this picture sequence - since it is also important to take photo of the first tasting. Reader can draw a conclusion of my opinion of the dish. (It was good as a matter of fact.)
On Monday it finally started and all that I remember is that I stuttered something which reminded of an elk with mouth full of bees. After dealing with few important things, such as confidentiality agreement and keycard I was handed a pile of paper and a pen – “Start drawing snowmobiles!”
Now slightly over a week after the first day I can really say that it’s awesome to be here. Job at the world-class design studio and life in a small and peaceful town balance each other very well. I’m looking forward for the upcoming challenges and there will be more detailed posts to come!