3 weeks away

I just returned from holiday, seeing family in Finland. Initially I was really nervous and unsure if going away was a good idea, but it turned out to be a lifesaver.

Almost a month ago we were wondering how best to get to the airport, how it would all pan out. What would the journey be like? What if we caught the virus on the trip there?

But soon enough we were past the flight and into our first week in Jätkäsaari, staying in a rental to semi isolate ourselves and do some remote work.

It was unreal – no masks, everything chilled out. We had escaped the nightmare and boredom of the past 4 months. Walking to the shops, feeling slightly like an imposter, but also feeling free. Going for wonderful jogs along the shore up to Hietaniemi beach. Little day trips with the kids to go shopping.

Of course it’s different when you’re on holiday, but I really appreciated the quality of life even so close to the city centre. Nice parks, the sea, walkways, playgrounds, bakeries, nature within easy reach. We were in a country that had contained the spread and for now was almost back to normal. So very different from the United Kingdom.

I’m back home now and it’s good to be back in familiar comfort. However it’s insanely hot here, and tomorrow it’s back to work. I don’t know what the autumn will bring. I have some doubts about living here as a strategic choice.

But it sure was nice to get away. The other night I sat by the shore of a lake after a run and a quick swim. The evening sun illuminated the blue water and the green reeds and trees on the other side of the lake, against a clear blue sky. Just the sounds of crickets, birds and the wind, the lapping of the water. It was so peaceful that I just didn’t want to go back home.

* Update: Finland imposed mandatory quarantine a day later after we came back, as a plane from Skopje landed in Turku carrying 26 infected persons, and there have been a few more cases. I guess we were lucky. This isn’t over for anyone yet.