Next year I will return to Finland for a concert at this wonderful festival: Annikki Poetry Festival I’m so very happy about this!!!
On our way back to Holland we reserved some time for another stay at the Vandrarhem in Björkfors. It was great being there again. The Allhuset is such an inspiring place to make music in. One evening I got started on a new song about Sauna’s and meeting nice people. The 9th of August we played our second concert at the Allhuset. Rick and his wife Linda baked chocolate cookies and served them with coffee and tea. Again the concert was absolutely lovely!!! The three nights we spend there was much to short!
Our last concert in Finland for this year: Kahvila Kääntöpöytä. A special place between the train tracks of Helsinki. A former turntable for trains has been transformed to a greenhouse, vegetable garden, café and terrace. There’s even a beehive! Saturday the 4th of August we played here outside on the terrace. The clouds cleared the moment we started to build up for your gig. I think our listeners had a good time as we did too :-)
The first of August we finally met Sirkka Suurla, the wonderful woman who organized all our shows in Finland, in Tampere. Together with her friend Kimmo Hokkanen she organized this charming little popup concert in Kimmo’s creatives workplace “Tilanne” in the center of Tampere. The atmosphere was great, we all learned how to make a summer roll and drank some fine wine. It was pure bliss :-)
After the concerts in Kaskinen we had a good time at the pilot station on the lighthouse island. While staying there we were lucky to find the lighthouse open due to maintenance one day and climbed up to admire the spectacular view. The other thing we enjoyed very much was heating up our sauna in the middle of the woods and cooling ourselves down with water from the groundwaterpump. I can recommend a visit to the old Sälgrund pilot station to everyone!
We arrived in Kaskinen friday night the 27th of July. Our first impression was: Wauw! A beautiful town with charming wooden houses surrounded with gardens with fruit trees, vegetable gardens and flowers! We stayed at Sininen Hetki; a restaurant with a couple of hotel rooms, a smoke sauna accommodation and a wonderful terrace at the seaside. The owner; Arto, turned out to be really welcoming. He spoiled us with wonderful food and drinks and warmed up the smoke sauna for us!
The smoke sauna is something really special. Arto kept the fire going for 7 hours, keeping the smoke of the sauna inside all this time. Then he opened the doors of the sauna to let the smoke escape. It stays hot really inside. The smell is wonderful, intense. And everything is almost to hot to touch. Outside is a private terrace with stairs into the see and some swinging benches to cool down and relax on with a cold drink. It was a sunny day, but I can imagine this is very special to do any day! There’s also a nice area inside where we practiced for our concerts during the day. We enjoyed the sauna after our picnic concert saturday the 28th of July.
The picnic concert was fantastic! A lot of people showed up with picnic blankets and food for some relaxing in the park & listening to our music. (estimate 300 people!) You could also sit at the benches put up in front of the stage. The weather was beautiful; sunny, warm, no cloud in the sky!
The 29th of July we played at the terrace of the restaurant. The sun was giving everyone a nice warm glow and it was very nice to see some people who had seen the concert the previous day came to listen to us again. It felt intimate and very special. After the concert I drank a fantastic glas of red wine to toast on yet another fantastic day at Kaskinen!
Hooray! 4 wonderful days at the singing school in Ilmajoki! It was very quiet and peaceful at this wonderful place. Till it got lively and vibrant when the new course started on friday the 27th of July with a concert of us in the music room.
We played a lot this week, and next to that we did a lot of relaxing with a book, in the sauna or on the trampoline too! At the end of the week we were in good shape and gave a wonderful concert for a full house!
The 21th of July we arrived in Rauma to play at the lovely café kahvila Soppi. To our very pleasant surprise we were about to stay at a former train station for 2 nights! In the livingroom, where there was still a board with lights that switched on with every train passing by, we practiced for our gig that night. That weekend was also the the beginning of the “lace festival”. People had open houses, gallery shows and kirppis (something like the American “Yard sale”) in the old center. Rauma has a really lovely center with the most wonderful wooden houses. It’ s on the Unesco’s heritage list. We were spoiled with the best cake and dinner by Siri, who co-runs the beautiful café Kahvila Soppi. Here it was were I ate the best carrot cake ever! The concert was very nice. The next day we walked around the lovely center and went to a tower at the border of the old city to see the view from above. And not to forget: I bought the most wonderful picnic equipment ever!