If you cycle as often as I do, you may find the following tips helpful:
- Checking cycling paths: http://pk.hsl.fi/en/ You can also export the paths to GPX or KML files.
- You can import routes in KML to Google Maps.
- You can use Google Maps to navigate when you’re not sure where you’re going to.
Yesterday the weather forecast said it would rain at 8am today, but not before that. So last night I went to bed very early and got up at 6 o’clock. When I headed out the rain already started, but it was not raining heavily. After some time it rained harder and I got all wet — the clothes are wet both inside and outside since I was sweating heavily. I thought it would take me longer time to get to work, but when I arrived it took me only one hour and ten minutes, even less time than yesterday!
I only wish I had brought another pair of socks since it became all wet because I was wearing sandals…
Cycling to work this morning took about one hour and 20 minutes; and cycling back took one hour and 5 minutes. 😀
Speed 17.75 kph vs. 19.4 kph, quite impressive!
I booked a flight to Warsaw one day after midsummer and discovered later no bus connection is available to the airport on that day. And after searching the cycling route to the airport I decided to cycle there this Saturday, since it’s just 22 km away. Last Saturday I started cycling again to get some exercise; I tried to find the airport but failed in the middle, I rode in the wrong direction for around 5 km without knowing that… Yesterday it was raining the whole day so it was not possible to cycle. To get more exercise I decided to go to work by bike — and to avoid too much exercise I chose the shorter route, for 7 km of which there’s no cycling path and I have to ride on Road/Highway 51. The road is under construction so the speed limit is around 50 kph — not too dangerous. There was not so much traffic, at least in my direction. And in 1h20m I arrived at Ericsson, saving 20 minutes compared to my previous route.
The previous weekend was also nice. On Friday I went to the best Chinese restaurant with my colleagues. The Peking Duck was quite nice and all of us loved it. I’ll probably go there again with other colleagues later on. On Saturday we had a grill party. The food was nice but the discussion was better. It seems that none of us is content with our current situation. I believe this is good, especially we are planning a change. On Sunday three of us had lunch and dinner again, again the discussion was great. It is nice to discuss with someone with the same technical background. Very fruitful weekend indeed.
I bought some Nokia shares a few months ago thinking at that time that the share price was really low, and it wouldn’t go lower than that. However, Nokia proved me wrong again and again. In April Nokia shares dropped more than 30%. And it has kept that trend ever since. Today it dropped again — around 20%. Now I’m losing more than 50%… Well, I guess there are reasons why some financial analysis institutes cut NOK as Junk… It’s just difficult for newbie investors to understand. Now I’ve witnessed how one company can screw up, and not surprised any more if it may go further down.
If Microsoft is to take over Nokia, it is certainly doing an excellent job…
We had our NomadicLab picnic day yesterday, and it was nice experience. The sky started a bit gloomy in the morning and everyone was worried it will rain during the day — which is said to be a tradition that many picnic days in previous years enjoyed raining weather. A colleague put his sunglasses on to pretend it’s sunny. And that helped. After some official workshop sessions when we walked outside, the sky was bright blue and sunny.
We brought the food and drinks to somewhere close to the sea and started the picnic under a huge cannon. People started eating and drinking and after one sandwich I went playing football. I got tired after a while and after some rest we played a Swedish game “Kubb“. It took us a long time to finnish just one round, but in the end my team won the game. After that we started volleyball. And that really hurt my arms and hands.
When we were heading back, someone was too drunk to walk already. A colleague asked me how it feels to be sober when others are drinking. “Normal”, I replied. It was an honest answer. As long as nobody is forcing me to drink, I feel completely comfortable. Besides, it feels more natural when alcohol makes Finns more talkative.
People went to a restaurant and later to a bar, but I didn’t go for no good reasons. Maybe I was just too tired. I came back with red and burning face (and probably also red neck). When bathing my nose was also bleeding — too much sunshine, I guess. After got up this morning my legs are sour, my arms hurting. But it was nice, at least I had time to be with colleagues not just talking about work, but also personal things.
Yesterday we had dinner at a colleague’s house. He has a house similar to my parents used to have: a two story building with both front yard and backyard. “Mi casa es su casa”, he says. And we acted like that. We sat in his sofa and played with his Playstation. I even played. Although I know I suck at games, but it doesn’t stop me enjoying having fun with friends. When we were playing Guitar Hero, I tried the drums, simply because I had some limited experience with them when I was in primary school 15 years ago. But it turned out too difficult for me; I was missing literally every note — either too fast or too slow. I guess previous experiences didn’t help much…
While we were playing video games, three ladies were busy preparing dinner. It might not be something to be bragged about, but it indeed felt great. It’s like staying at home and I never need to cook, someone always keep my stomach full. Same thing happened yesterday — we almost exploded… Also after dinner no one needs to wash the dishes, there’s a machine for that!
After dinner and a little bit rest we headed home, and a colleague drove us back home although he lives in the oposite direction. It’s very nice to have such awesome colleagues and friends. “We should do this often, or even everyday”, I proposed to the colleague who cooked. She looked happy and said “I’m very happy you like it; I like cooking very much!”
I know it’s impossible to do it often; but I’m still quite surprised that there is actually someone who loves cooking in this world.
Today I found a mail lying in my mailbox, and it turned out that I have the right to vote! Believe it or not:
Well, I’m also from a republic country — at least that’s what they say — but I’ve never had the chance to vote. It seems that one should not believe what one government claims. And now I feel quite upside about Finland: how can you let a foreigner vote? I’m not a citizen, I don’t even have a permanent residence permit! Isn’t Finland afraid of people overthrowing one government? Well, I just think they are wild! Now what should I do? Just discard it? But this’s my first opportunity! But whom I should vote? No one never taught me how!
I didn’t realize I’ve been in Finland for almost two years now. It’s been a long time. It’s been nice to study, work and live here. But there’s still something missing, however I don’t really know what’s missing. I suppose I was born a nomad; I’m one that never wants to settle. When is the time to move on? And where I’d go? What should I go after?
I don’t have answers to any of them. But I guess it’s good this way, at least for now.
This morning I had to go to Helsinki city center to pick up some office equipment, and once I got on the bus I noticed something different from my daily routine: I couldn’t find a seat that no one was sitting beside, which is quite rare when I go to/back from work. Before this I had always thought that there isn’t enough people in Finland even to fill a bus… It became more obvious when the bus in driving away from the highway and begin entering the city center: there was roughly one km queue of traffic waiting, I thought only big cities have this kind of problems. Turned out I was wrong.
One hour later when I was going back to work from Helsinki center, I got onto a bus in which I was the only passenger — for more than 10km. After that there were three of us all the way to my workplace. And after we got off, the bus was empty again — of course the driver was still there… Living inside ring one and working outside ring three certainly has some benefits: one never needs to worry about crowded public transportation.
Things become quite different when you take them for granted, isn’t it?
Yesterday I watched the movie “Matchstick men” starring Nicolas Cage, of whom I’m a big fan. The movie was great and the ending was quite unexpected. I thought I had watched all Nicolas’ movies, but for some reason I missed this one. But it’s still nice, the movie gave me a pleasant surprise. A con artist gets conned — the plot is a bit similar to some episodes of “Hustle”.
This noon I went to lunch in a restaurant in Kirkkonummi city center with many colleagues. The food was nice; and the salad was really great. It was probably the most delicious salad I’ve ever tried. The bread was good, too. Even I could tell the difference between the food in a proper restaurant and Amica food. We sat outside in the terrace in the sunshine. It was a bit cool, but it feels like summer is already here.
The sky went dark in the afternoon. I was planning to pick up some office gears after work. But since I was only wearing short shirts without a jacket, it’d be a good idea to go there tomorrow. Hopefully it’ll be good weather then. 🙂
Spring is already in Helsinki; I shot these beautiful flowers on the bus when going to work:
At work Aimmy invites us to have some cake during afternoon coffee break. The cake was very delicious and she’s really good at cooking yummy food. She has already made muffins twice before this; and we are all expected to taste some original Thai food, probably next week.
Yesterday I volunteered to set up a website for the project I’m currently working on. It seems that even my PHP skills will be useful for my career. Some skills developed from hobbies come quite handy when doing serious business. Everything, any experience or lessons are likely to be used sometime later…
I moved my desk to a different position in the room and now I’m enjoying the new layout. Last night I watched Hangover from my bed instead of siting in my uncomfortable chair, thanks to the new layout. 27 inch display looks OK and wireless keyboard acts as remote — a real big remote. Now off to watch Hangover 2. 🙂
Today I had a meeting in Otaniemi and finally managed to visit the possibly the highest building in this area: the water tower. It’s quite a nice view up there. The water tower is build on top of a small hill around 30m high; and the tower itself is about 50m — that makes it standing 80m from the sea level and on top of which it gives a perfect bird view to the whole Otaniemi area.
It’s said that with totally cloudless weather, one can even see as far as Tallinn, which sits around 80km away in the south. That’s pretty amazing!
There is one seagull nest on the roof and there are some eggs waiting to be hatched in it. We saw the seagull circling above us. Fortunately it wasn’t so aggressive to try to attack us, yet.
By the way, the water tower is designed by Alvar Aalto, after which Aalto University is named.
A look upwards to the tower:
Off back home early. It was a nice day!
Today was a good day, thanks to the following things:
- It was nice to talk with a colleague from Ericsson Beijing. I got to know what’s going on in China through someone else’s eyes. Also I know how it looks to work in Beijing and how a different job may feel like. She said working in Operations is quite stressful and may require a lot of night shifts, which is not good for anyone’s health. One of her colleagues in Japan had worked night shifts continuously for 90 days… I feel lucky to work in a job that is less likely to cause health problems, although sometimes I do want a bit more pressure.
- During lunch we were chatting and one topic came out when discussing giving names to babies. It turns out that Finns give names to their babies secretly for the first three month after the baby is born. That’s probably due to religious reasons, i.e., the devils can not claim the baby if it doesn’t bear a name. It’s also funny that Finns wait until the baby is born to give it a name, simply because they want to make sure the baby’s image matches the name. Hmm, how can you possibly do that? How do you know how “Jussi” should look like? Well, Finns simply do.
- I succeeded to revert my Galaxy Tab back to stock version, there wasn’t any noticeable damage to it. It’s nice to have a working tablet that a brick.
- I got a clearer view of the short-term goal of the project I’m currently working on.
- There are a lot of spam comments in my website, luckily the Akismet plugin successfully blocked all of them. Akismet is free of charge and it works like magic.
- Yesterday I managed to update my WordPress Responsive Theme to the latest version, and managed to fix the “number of comments title wrongly aligned” issue.