Day 7: A trip back in time?

>> Friday, July 10, 2015

Diving into the lake today
When we left this sensational place in July 2014, we had just completed our third annual holiday here, and in perhaps the best weather we had ever experienced. For the past near 12 months, I've been waiting to be back, to enjoy the same fabulous weather and to wonder at the multitude of moods that this lake, Palvajarvi produces even in the space of a single day. This year, it's been different, with very unsettled and cool (by the last few years' standards) conditions, but today, all that changed, and we had a quite fantastic day of beautiful warm sunshine, and exquisite conditions in the lake itself!
Olga, taken by Anna, on their early morning walk.
A couple of perch caught by Sandy this morning.
Sandy with Arnold.
This character has some significance to Anna- ask her!
Early in the morning, Sandy was busy fishing again; he's become quite the fisherman lately and it didn't take him long to hook a few perch using the lure he bought the other day in town. While he was enjoying that, and while Anna and Olga went for a walk, I nipped along to the ABC at Vaajakoski to get some more of the tasty pork that we barbequed on our first night here. While there I was pondering some of the prices that ABC was charging. Bearing in mind that it's open 24 hours, and therefore is a bit more expensive than the other supermarkets such as S-Market and K-Market, I found the prices of what I was buying nonetheless very reasonable. More than 1kg of local Finnish tomatoes cost €1.30, just less than £1, which compares pretty favourably against Asda Dunbar's £0.79 for 250g of Dutch tomatoes, and more for UK versions. I also bought nearly 2kg of new Finnish potatoes for €1.55, again much cheaper than new potatoes ever are in the UK. The marinated pork itself was €5.99 for 1kg, again much less than I'd expect to pay in Scotland. OK, I admit that some other things such as alcohol are certainly more expensive here, but maybe that's no bad thing.
The Three Sisters, according to Anna!
Looking skywards!
Looking to the wood shed and darts board.
No wonder Olivia is happy!
Back home, it was time for an early lunch as the sun was showing signs of warming things up really nicely, so we ate quickly and I lit the sauna once more. By 1.10pm, Keith was in the lake swimming and proclaiming loudly that the water was wonderful! Believe it or not, he spent the entire afternoon from then until nearly 5.45pm either swimming or relaxing in the sauna and clearly had great fun. But it wasn't just him, as we all had repeated sessions in both the water and the lake, which was indeed noticeably warmer today than in previous days.
While I am keeping an online blog, Anna's writing her diary!
Keith heading on another circuit!
Olivia and Sandy by the jetty.
Quick break for Olivia to perform for 5 minutes on the trampoline.
Keith exiting the sauna, ready to hit the water again.
The moods change here so quickly. For a few minutes, all became calm and the reflections were stunning!
By the house, wonderful scene behind us.
Sandy back fishing as the reflections continue.
While Keith continued swimming, I got to work getting the pork ready with Anna's help, and we ate at about 6pm, keeping the sauna going as we all intended heading straight back there after dinner. With the weather so good today, and with such uncertain conditions ahead over the next week, we need to enjoy these amazing days in the best way possible!
Looking back to the house from the barbeque area. 
From behind the sauna.
Barbeque area, waiting for the pork to cook!
Cousins Arnold and Olivia.
Looking to the house from the side.


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Silja Line - Sweden to Finland

Silja Line - Sweden to Finland
A fantastic way to arrive in Finland is by using the Tallink Silja service from Stockholm in Sweden. These are magnificent boats which take you overnight into Helsinki's centre, and to travel by car with a good quality sea-view cabin is relatively inexpensive. Buffet dinners are outstanding!

Viking Line - Sweden to Finland

Viking Line - Sweden to Finland
An inexpensive way to arrive in Finland is to take the Viking Line ferry service from Stockholm to Helsinki. This overnight service gives the opportunity to sleep in a spacious cabin, taking your car, and arriving the next morning in central Helsinki. This service operates at the same time as the Silja Line service each day.

Finnlines - Germany to Finland

Finnlines - Germany to Finland
On several occasions over the past few years, we have used the excellent FinnLines ferry service from Travemunde in Germany, to sail right up the Baltic Sea to Helsinki. It's an expensive option, but it is a truly memorable journey on what are very modern and extremely comfortable boats. Highly recommended!

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