Hello-sinki! (Or: At Least the Internet is Free and Fast)
The most interesting thing about Helsinki--I say this after several hours of careful inspection--is that it may well be the most boring city I've ever seen. World-record-setting boring. Gold medal boring. The International Capitol of Excellence in Boringness.
I have been looking all over for anything that might be of interest to Ricochet readers. This is the best I can do so far:
- Finns are even blonder than Estonians. I had no idea people could be so blonde. Imperialists came to this land long ago and seized all the local melanin resources, I guess, and they just never recovered.
- On first inspection, I'd guess the Finnish birth rate is quite healthy. I'm not seeing many Finns--the streets are dead empty--but of those I do see, a high percentage are (unbelievably blonde) little kids. They're all protected from every conceivable hazard, too, with advanced Finnish bike helmets, advanced Finnish sun visors, and advanced-looking wheels on their advanced Finnish baby carriages. These kids, clearly, are all going to make it to adulthood.
- Some linguists believe Finnish and Turkish to be part of the same Ural-Altaic language family. That hypothesis is a bit controversial, as controversies among linguists go. Let me settle it right now: No, Finnish has nothing in common with Turkish. That's just nuts.
- Supposedly, there are 5,000 Turkish immigrants in Finland. I've spent the morning looking for one. No luck so far. In fact, I've yet to see anyone who looks like an immigrant. I must be walking through the wrong neighborhoods.
- I don't think the Helsinki events coordinator on the Crystal Serenity has ever before been asked by a passenger where to find the cheap kebab stands. She looked even more perplexed when I tested the hypothesis that Finnish and Turkish might be mutually intelligible.
- I reckon after that exchange I'm now known as the ship weirdo. One on every cruise, I suppose.