Monday, 8 May 2017

Summer Bucket List 2017

As we are living the last spring month in Finland, it's a suitable time for listing down the things that I want to do during the summer of 2017. What comes to the list, they are things that I'd wish to do, however, I tried to write about things, which are actually possible. Other exciting things are also more than welcome - how boring would a summer be without any extempore activities? 

- I really want to spend lovely weekends at the summer cottage, because it is extremely relaxing to just hang out, take a sauna, swim at the lake and barbecue without any rush. 

- Previously, I have wished to travel abroad, but this summer I'd like to see some Finnish towns, which are new to me. Of course, traveling abroad would be fantastic as well, but my work comes in the way of longer travels - maybe during the autumn then. 

- Social contacts are important for me and I value friendship very highly, hence you gotta make sure to arrange meetings even if everybody has different schedules. 

- Last year I was a very lazy pen pal, but I have caught up with mail very well during the past months. I truly wish that I can keep up this speed of answering to letters. 

- My aim is to keep on seeing my granny from father's side weekly, and traveling to Hamina at least twice in the summer to spend time with my other granny. Of course, it would be lovely to see my other relatives as well - every family is unique. 

- On May 15th I'm starting my very first office job that is related to my past studies. I really want to succeed in it and create better base for my future job search. 

- Ever since meeting my boyfriend, I have been more eager to test out new dishes and drinks. It doesn't matter if I will cook by myself or eat out at restaurants. 

- As I have created a very functioning sport schedule for myself, I want it to continue throughout the summer. It would be awesome to learn how to go jogging when the weather seems too hot for me. 

- When I was little my family went on a farm to pick strawberries, but I can't recall anything from this event. 

- It's been multiple years since I last went to an amusement park, hence I really want to go this summer. 

- I want to be happy during the summer. I wish it to be filled with laughter and as stress-free as possible. 

- My aim is to create lovely memories during the summer, especially with my love.  It doesn't matter what we do as long as we get to spend more time together than before. 

- Swim in the sea
- See a sunrise
- Taste new ice cream flavours
- Go a whole day without technology
- Read at least one book (Any suggestions?)
- Bake something that I have never baked before
- Try out yoga


What have you included on your bucket list this summer?

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

Correspondence as a Hobby

When meeting new people or reconnecting with old ones, the question about hobbies comes out. The answer that I give every time is that I correspond with people around the world. I've been doing it ever since I learned how to write, so to me, it's more of a way of life than a thing that I do when I'm bored. Due to the amusement and disbelief towards my hobby, I thought I would list down the pros and cons associated with correspondence. Just bear in mind that these are my own opinions and every single snail mailer has their own reasoning for writing letters. 

I suppose, I could start by explaining what is correspondence. To me correspondence means the exchange of handwritten letters, which travel through traditional postmen and women. I understand that people may also correspond through electronic ways, but to me that ruins the true essence of correspondence. Before anybody asks, I'm also aware of the other definitions, but they don't seem relevant to this blog post. 

My correspondence history dates back to 2002, when I wrote my very first letter. I started school in 2001, so writing letters happened just after I learned how to write. The main reason for starting this hobby was it being my mother's hobby. She has also been writing letters since her teenage years, so I thought it would be nice to share the same hobby. Moreover, I was jealous of her receiving so much mail, hence I wanted to be surprised by a letter as well. 

My first letters were in Finnish and rather short, however, I got to meet some amazing people and truly practice my horrific handwriting, so that people could actually read it. I remember back in primary school, when I was waiting for my parents to get home so that I could see if I got any mail. *Our mailbox is locked and that time I didn't have the key.* I found it too annoying to wait for my parents to come home from work, so I asked to get the mailbox key as a birthday present one year. Especially, during the summer holidays it was so much fun to watch ''Los Serranos'' from TV while eating breakfast and then head towards the mailbox to see if there was any mail for me. I've got one Finnish pen pal left from the primary school times - she is truly amazing. She is also writing a blog (in Finnish), but if you want to take a look, you can find it here

The correspondence became even more exciting when I started writing letters in English. Honestly, I couldn't care less about learning English in primary school, but I was so lucky to get a lovely teacher at the secondary school. She inspired me to practice English and start writing letters in English as well. This happened in 2008. It was so exciting to receive those first letters from abroad, because people didn't use Internet so much and social media was still in the early stages. I remember the feeling of receiving a handwritten letter from a total stranger, from a foreign country and seeing the beautiful stamps and thinking about its travel from the starting point to the destination. 

I know my first English letters were horrific, because I have saved some drafts. I had to do it, especially with first letters, because I wanted to make sure there weren't too many grammar mistakes. Sometimes I also had to use a dictionary for understanding everything, but hey it meant learning new words and expanding my vocabulary. 

If I were to mention any negative aspects of this hobby, I could say that it is extremely slow, though it depends on the country and the speed of answering to the letters you receive. You may also realize that you don't lick with the other person after exchanging a few letters, which is sad, because then you have ''wasted'' time and stamps, however, you can never know before you try! Nevertheless, the saddest part of correspondence are letters getting lost or stolen! It's so sad to hear after many months of posting a letter that it has never reached its destination. However, this is a part of this hobby, which is out of our control. 

Overall, I couldn't be happier for starting correspondence! It has given me so much: friends, cultural knowledge, better English skills, interesting discussions, beautiful stamps and so much more! People, who don't snail mail or comprehend what it's all about cannot understand how amazing it is! It's a rare hobby to have in today's globalized world full of social media channels, but I still wish this hobby could interest more people in the future. Just imagine how somebody, who you have never met in real life, can spend even six hours for writing you a letter. Hence, correspondence creates long-lasting true friendships

Please, tell me what's your take on correspondence? Could you see it as a hobby yours?