The most frequent question I get is: “How come you came all the way to Finland?’’ The truth is, there is no one-word answer. People from all over the world, like myself, seem drawn to this Nordic country for a variety of reasons. After explaining the awesomeness of the country—the landscapes, the exemplary education system, the overall security and quality of life—modest Finns seem perplexed. “But FINLAND?!” a friend once responded in utter shock. In his mind, other countries appeared to fit my description better; in mine, Finland appeared to be just perfect.
Much to Finns’ dismay, I am not the only one who came here of my own free will. Amanda Zebedee, an English woman who recently moved to Finland, shared with us some of her impressions so far. “I’m stunned by the sudden explosion of life. I came at the end of May and was not expecting the greenness. A part of me thought blackness was just a part of the country, the constant light seems surreal!”
“I’m stunned by the sudden explosion of life. I came at the end of May and was not expecting the greenness. A part of me thought blackness was just a part of the country, the constant light seems surreal!”
It doesn’t take living here to fall in love with the country. Other people come from faraway places to visit this part of the world. A reader of Finland Today, Michan Ballack, shared his experience visiting Finland. Originally from Spain, Ballack is a journalist completely in love with Finland! He has been traveling to the country since he was a baby because he has both nationalities. One of his earliest memories dates back to 1997: “It was Christmas and the country was covered in snow. It was something magical, as Joulupukki came to Mummo’s house.”
Because snow filled Christmases are something that some of us had only seen in movies, it really is indescribable experiencing it for the first time. “I have traveled to Finland many times during the winter, and I’ve always enjoyed the snow, so it has to be one of my favorite things about the country,” Ballack added. His family lives in the south so he has visited Helsinki and other major cities in the south. However, there is still much to discover: “I still want to discover more places like Lapland and Rauma,” he shared with us.
Even though the winter months are still far away, Amanda seems to be well-prepared for it. “It will be such a contrast, I can’t even imagine how it will all look blanketed in snow,” she said. For now, she is experiencing the summer in all its splendor as Midsummer is finally here.
It might seem like an unsolved mystery, but there is something about the Finnish lands that manages to awe and inspire those of us who come from remote lands.