Dear me, what a week. Feels like I've been riding on a rocket. Whoosh!
First there was the beginning of work and the birth of little Aure. In other words, the week started out with me having serious issues of spinning in my head. Do this, plan that, coo at the baby bundle.
Work, btw, has been good so far. Now I'm really looking forward to settling down, so to say. To get to the daily routines of getting to work somehow, teaching the daily dose of Finnish or legal matters and figuring out how to get home in the afternoon.
It's funny how quickly I've noticed that I really miss my old car. It's so much more convenient to hop in your own car, drive to work according to your own schedules and not having to figure out which bus goes where and when. But to be honest, I'd be cursing the car (my old one, that is) to the lowest levels of Dante's charming hell as soon as the temperatures begin to sink below zero during the night. (Which, I'm happy to say, isn't quite yet.)
But the car issue is going to have to be solved later. For now I'll settle for bus hopping (at least I can get some reading done during the 40 minute drive to/from Nousiainen), borrowing grandpa's car and commuting with co-workers when their schedules fit mine. Which they really don't do that often, unfortunately. I'm sure I'll appreciate having a car all the more after having to do without for some time.
Ah, back on track. On Wednesday I got some very interesting guests. The Australian GUFF-travellers came to stay over at my place for a night and naturally there was some programming to be done to entertain them. G(oing)U(nder)F(an)F(und) is a way to promote fannish cooperation between Australia&NZ and Europe. This year's Australian winners, Damien and Juliette, had already met people in Britain, visited the Worldcon in Glasgow (obviously) and were planning on going further to Sweden, Denmark and Germany to meet the local fans.
A small delegation of us Turku fans gathered with D&J to have dinner in Harald, where the brave Aussies had a taste of weird Finnish beverages like tar schnaps. Either they really sort of liked it or they put up a very polite face, since they did admit it "wasn't as bad as one could've thought". Heh.
On Thursday after work it was time for touristy stuff. D&J had found out that two other Australians were visiting in Tampere at the same time, so on that afternoon I found myself in the company of four nice Australians instead of just two, when Dave and Karen joined us after a quick train trip to Turku.
It was so much fun to show them around town. We went to the Turku Castle, walked around and had coffee in the castle courtyard. We didn't take the tour inside the castle, because that would've been sort of expensive and taken a lot of time. After that we walked back to the center of town. It was a nice walk on the bank of river Aura. We discussed, among other things, arranging cons the Finnish and Australian ways. It was very interesting to compare them. (There were a few other interesting matters to compare between the Finnish and Aussie living. Like for example Karen told me that she thought that the Finnish bumblebees were huge. I would've thought Australian bumblebees would be bigger. I don't know why, but just feels like it should be like that, Australia being warmer and all. And it was even more fun to compare ideal winter days. For them Thursday's weather, sunny and about 23 degrees C, was a very nice wintery weather. I would consider -5 degrees, 20 cm of snow on the ground and sunshine from a blue sky to be a perfect winter day...)
I can't even begin to describe how crazy I feel when I have to admit that after discussing con organising, I'm really getting excited about possibly arranging Finncon in Turku again, in 2008. I must be flat out mad to consider a project of that magnitude now, but as we already agreed that there'd be Australian visitors (hehheh), I suppose we'll have to get down to it pretty soon. Time for a first con committee meeting, yup. No escaping the fact that it's a heck of a lot of fun (there is no buzz like the buzz I get during the con week) even though it's also a heck of a lot of stress and work, on so many levels. But crazy is as crazy does, and I think I want to do another Finncon. :) (Somebody just please shoot me now, ok?)
(Be comforted. We're nearing the end of the week in this lengthy post.) During this part of the semester I have no classes to teach on Fridays, so instead I spent my first free Friday desperately trying to find brown dressy shoes to wear with my outfit for Saturday's wedding.
Considering that brown is the black of the day in clothing, it was amazingly frustrating to try to find brown shoes to match. Grr. Ended up buying no shoes. Decided to compromise my elegance by wearing black strappy shoes instead. (Oh, woe, what a fashion disaster!)
The wedding on Saturday was very charming. Kirsi and Matti had invited some 50 guests, which was (so I was told) a compromise between Matti's idea of a wedding for 100 people and Kirsi's idea of eloping without no guests at all. :) I'm so happy they decided to have a wedding!
The ceremony was held in the beautiful, medieval church of Nousiainen. The exact same church I met Kirsi in some 13 years ago. It all seemed so appropriate. Kirsi was wearing an absolutely gorgeous dark red silk dress, just like she'd always wanted. I remember us talking about my mom's red wedding dress already in high school and Kirsi being very convinced that she'd want a red one too. So she did. It was perfect for her. Matti also looked very handsome.
The reception was held in the old railway station of Nousiainen. A beautiful old building, which created a very intimate and well, rural (in a positive sense!), atmosphere to the whole reception. Everything was just like I'd imagined Kirsi would want it to be. She did seem pleased with all the arrangements when I talked with her during the evening.
Finally, everything was crowned by the most stunning full moon rising. I can't imagine a more perfect August night. As I drove home (I had dad's adorable VW Beetle, squee!), I felt so happy for my dear old friend. She used to be so scared of not finding anyone and there she was, beautiful on her wedding day, with her husband and their utterly, completely gorgeous little daughter Amanda. It's wonderful, when people's worst fears dissolve like the mist on a lake when the sun rises. Congratulations once more to the whole family! If I die tomorrow, I'll know I've done at least some good in this world by matching you two way back when... :)
Ah, I'm getting awfully sentimental here. Weddings do that to me, you know.
Anyhow, now it's time I begin thinking about the upcoming week, which should be somewhat calmer, thank goodness. I think I may even have a "free" weekend coming up, when it comes to prearranged social events. I'm thinking of going to Kurala to watch the primitive weapons' competitions instead. :) But that's not before I've taught a few lessons to a bunch of students, heh.