Sunday, August 06, 2006

Firstly, I'm sorry for the long break in posts. I've got a good reason though: I've been on holiday to Finland!

It all started a couple of weeks ago on Saturday the 22nd of July. We met Aunty Angela, Uncle Phil and their new baby Morgan in the morning, but Mum and Dad spent a lot of time doing jobs after that which was a little bit boring. However, I was sure something was up as Mum put a lot of things into suitcases and Dad made big piles of things in the hall (I did my bit by moving things when they weren't looking). I found out what was going on after tea, when they put me in the car instead of in my bed and we all set off up the motorway. It was all very exciting: Dad said I was still wriggling and chattering when we got to Newport.

It turned out we were going to Ma and Pa's house. I was very tired when we got there, but I was pleased to see them. In the morning, I went to Church with Mum and Ma and then we all went round to Nana and Grandpa's house for a barbeque. Granny was there, and I had a lovely time splashing around in some water with Aunty Ceri and playing on Dad's old toddle truck:

On Monday, we went to Aunty Ceri's museum to have a good look round. I had a great time playing in the Den Exhibition, particularly because I love playing with doors and there were a lot of things to open and close (however, I must apologise for breaking the cat-flap in one of the Dens: it just came off in my hand and I swear it was loose when I found it). After lunch, we went to Aunty Ceri's house for another barbeque (I had a lot of barbeque food this holiday; it's yummy).

Tuesday was a very long day, but quite exciting as I went on two areoplanes! Grandpa took us to the airport (we couldn't find a taxi with a car-seat) and then we had to wait for a long time. After a while, we went to a place with lots of shops and we waited for a bit longer. Then we went to another place with lots of seats where we waited a bit more. I spent a lot of time running around looking for things to play with (trolleys make passable toddle-trucks, by the way). Being on the aeroplane was quite fun to start with (there are lots of trays and cup-holders to play with), but when I wanted to go for a run about, I discovered that Mum had somehow strapped me to her. Then it all got a bit noisy and it felt like someone was turning me upside down: I thought it was funny. The flight itself was pretty uneventful, although I didn't like coming down too much as it made me feel a bit poorly.

When we got off the plane, we were in Copenhagen. We had some lunch, and then we had to do the same thing all over again to get to Helsinki (and there was lots more waiting about), but this was a much easier flight as I fell asleep and didn't wake up until after we'd landed. We were in Finland! A big yellow taxi took us to our apartment, a lovely open-plan studio a mere five minutes walk from the centre of town. It was very grand (although it didn't have a bath; this was a bit of a problem as I'm terrified of showers).

On Wednesday we wandered into Helsinki and met one of Ma's Finnish friends (Ritva) for coffee. Aunty Ceri introduced me to "pula", a Finnish bready/cake thing which tastes of cinnamon and which is absolutely yummy (we ate a lot of these over the course of the holiday; Aunty Ceri appears to be addicted to them). In the afternoon, we met another of Ma's Finnish friends (Jonna) for lunch at the Modern Art Museum (I had a great time running up and down the galleries while shouting "Bah!").

On Thursday, we went for an open top bus tour (I slept through most of it, but I'm told it was excellent), and we had yummy crepes at the market (food was very important on this holiday: I ate lots of new and interesting things).

On Friday, we took the bus to Seurasaari, which is an open-air museum a bit like St. Fagans but much prettier and with a beach. After looking at the houses for a bit, we settled down on the sand for a bit and Dad and Aunty Ceri went swimming (it was bitterly cold: I think they were both mad and complained loudly when they tried to make me swim too).

The second stage of our holiday started on Saturday the 29th of July, when we left Helsinki for the lakelands up by Iitti. Pa had found us a great car, just like Postman Pat's. We got a bit lost leaving Helsinki (Dad blamed it on the one-way system), and we were a bit late leaving but we did manage to call in at Hvitträsk on the way. Aunty Ceri did a work placement here a while back, and she wanted to revisit it before leaving. It's a beautiful building complex that used to be owned by some artists. I did some drawing while I was there:

After leaving Hvitträsk, we set off to our cottage. It took a while to get there, but mostly because it was in the middle of nowhere. The cottage was beautiful however: pictures are far better than words to describe it and the surroundings:

We didn't do many trips while we were staying by the lake, as there was loads to do just there. The cottage came with it's own barbeque, sauna, jetty, rowing boat, and ducks (I made friends with them by feeding them my leftovers), and there was even a private island with barbeque in the middle of the lake. We made good use of the sauna and barbeque (Finnish sausages are yummy), and we spent a lot of time on the lake (Aunty Ceri and Dad did a lot of swimming). I thought the sauna was kinda interesting: it's a big room with benches and a fire in it that gets very hot. I'm not sure what it's for, but its pretty soundproof and it's really good for playing in early in the morning with Dad before everyone else is awake.

We met some more of Ma's Finnish friends at the cottage. Elli and Kari came and stayed overnight on Wednesday, and took us all out for a meal, and Cilla (one of Jonna's daughters) came to see us on Thursday

Everything came to an end yesterday, when packed everything up into the Postman pat van, drove it to the airport and flew back to Manchester via Copenhagen. Once we landed, we said a tearful farewell to Aunty Ceri and we went back to Ma and Pa's house for some tea (I was starving: travelling makes me hungry and I had to steal some of Mum's chips to fill me up). After that, Mum and Dad bundled me into to the car and we drove all the way back to Cardiff. It was a very long day...

We all had a lovely holiday, and we were all a bit sad to be back today. Cardiff seems very noisy and busy in comparison to Finland, yet my house seems empty without Ma, Pa and funny Aunty Ceri to play with when Mum and Dad are busy. I miss them all.

Hi Will! Amazing photos and the writeup is fantastic, i am really jealous!! I want to go to Finland also! Dont be sad that your holiday is over, just think that is is now sooner to the next one than yesterday.. lots of love, Uncle Dave
I'm jealous too - AND I've missed reading the blog while you've been away. Love to all xxx
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