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Thursday, January 28, 2016

Flight to Estonia and ferry to Finland

Ice blocks in front of a restaurant/bar in Tallinn

Again I had a little job in Estonia, inspection at my former commissioning converter station, took a flight to Tallinn and my co-worker rented the car to travel to “magnificent” Rakvere. The only good thing there is the Aqva Spa hotel, in which we finally managed to check in, and the cheap Vana Tallinn liquor. Onsite the next day we had an over-long working shift and, therefore, missed dinner and sauna Estonian style, pouring water literwise over the heated rocks.

Small, narrow street in the old town of Tallinn

Before my colleague and name twin had to take the flight home, we had a few hours left in Tallinn and thus, we did some sightseeing in the centre. He had the flight at 6 pm, I took the ferry instead, crossed the Baltic Sea and watched those Finns getting all the beers and wines and spirits they would need for the next weeks. Quite funny to see how everyone drags a trolley packed with longdrink cans off the ship. I was one of them. “You have to adapt”, I said to myself.

One of the scenic views over Tallinn

Jouni picked me up from the ferry terminal and we immediately met a British friend of him in the city. He had to drive carefully – people are crossing the street, or moved waveringly from side to side totally wasted. Remember, it’s just a bit past 9 pm. Sauna was next, at Julian’s place. He has, like most Finns do, an own one in his apartment. Perfect finish for the day.
While Jouni had a basketball the next day early in the morning, I turned around one more time and slept a little longer. After breakfast, we directly went to his parents for lunch. Finnish meatballs and smashed potatoes … and … Jouni’s father had the opinion vodka suits extremely good. The first bottle was emptied quite quickly and he just got another one without asking. I grinched and tried to gesture politely not wanting a refill again. Obviously, he didn’t notice. Time passed by and we ended up playing cards and learning Swedish. Don't know why Swedish ... it just happened that way. I just let it go and stopped to ask questions :)
The party continued at Jouni’s place after, Shane, Julian and Henry joined us one by one. A few bottles later, Milli Clubbi in the centre was one more time our destination and we partied through the night.

Entering Helsinki's harbour

The next morning was hard, still a little tinnitus in my ears, a hammer in my head, tiredness. That’s how you should leave Finland. I had a lot time to get well – a metro ride though Helsinki, a little walk, waiting time at the ferry terminal, 2 ½ hours ferry cruise, taxi to the Tallinn airport, another 3 hours waiting time, flight to Nuremberg and taxi home … I made it all!

Saturday, January 09, 2016

Birthday bash in Münster

It was Juan’s surprise party for his 30th birthday. Thus, we hopped to their car “surprisingly” and went through complete Germany. Christina’s parents, where we all stayed for the weekend, welcomed us warmly, with some vodka and other liquors (raspberry schnapps from Thuringia). Half of the family can’t wait to say cheers and raised their glasses.

The next morning started expectedly late, but with an excellent breakfast and Columbian coffee. Regained some power, we took the bikes and a tour through Münster. Our Columbian tour guide showed us around, the cathedral and the famous market, the city centre and the castle.

Juan’s surprise party started in the evening and he didn’t even thought of having so many guests – a bit overwhelmed. The BBQ was lit up, having some delightful salads as side dish. And the vodka bottles have been emptied numerously. I can’t even recall how many they have been. Party was going on until late in a club called Fusion. I don’t know much anymore. Good party!!!

The next morning was hard and we were taking it slowly. After breakfast, we had coffee later in Münster downtown again, meeting a study buddy from Antje, before heading back home.