On Independence

This year marks the centenary of Finland’s independence. So, in keeping with the celebratory mood, I’ve compiled a list of top 10 things I love about my second home.

And so here they are, in no particular order:

  • Silence is fun
  • Education is a right, not a privilege
  • Sauna
  • Safe and peaceful
  • Finnish cuisine; a gift from nature
  • Friendships are genuine
  • Finns live outdoors, there’s no such thing as bad weather here
  • Gender equality
  • Winter is a fairy tale
  • Nature; a poem


    This list doesn’t even begin to express how I love my life here. But, but…I’ve been putting together more thoughts, observations and gratitude in a language I know how – poetry.

    A chapbook containing 10 pieces will hopefully be available (in limited edition) early next year. I wanted it to coincide with the celebrations but I unfortunately missed the deadline.

    I hear you ask, “How can you miss a deadline? What kind of a writer are you?” Well, because I receive a “bribe” every month so that I can forget my dream of becoming a full-time writer. 🙂

    Last but not least, Happy Independence Day to my Finnish family and friends!

  • A Quilted Memory

    “Winter my dear would be cold without warm memories.”

    Flakes fall―
    a spectacle through the window
    warm glögi cupped between my hands
    ember coals in the room give way to the glow in your eyes
    defying echoes of impossible dreams to relive a day under the African sun
    where we took our first long kiss; a beginning of a lifetime journey to the moon

    ...lighting up my world
    …lighting up my world

    Song choice: The Impossible Dream by Andy Williams

    – process note: this piece is for our upcoming wedding anniversary on Dec 6th. It always feel as if the whole country pauses to celebrate with us, only but of course, it’s also Finland’s Independence Day. It’s a day of double celebration in our home!