Canned Dreams/Koiteli Rapids

30 Sep

Another week down! Another week of panicked study, quite dull classes and hiding from the rain. This week has been a bit grey all over, other than my trips to Finnkino and Koiteli Rapids.  Monday I also went shopping and found another great second hand store. This one was run by the Pentacostal Church and can be found on Uusikatu, numero 78. I bought a jumper and a scarf for 2 euros, bargain. I also sampled coffee from ‘Coffee House’ in town – yum! What a selection of buns and cakes! 

This year Oulu hosted the Nordisk Film Festival, a showcase of independent films from Iceland, Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Finland. The cinema, Finnkino, is right in the city centre and has a great-modern, cosy and snack filled interior.

We caught the end of ‘The Quiet One’, a movie about a girl who moves from Iran to Sweden and faces language problems, before we settled into ‘Canned Dreams’. It’s the story of all the workers who contribute to the ingredients that make up a can of ravioli. Sounds a bit odd, but it’s actually a really touching insight into the lives of workers all over Europe. Many have sad tales to tell, and life is grim and hard, but there were some uplifting ones too. One man worked the fields every day and told the story of his brother who had been killed in a car accident, by policemen who were drink driving. The man and his brother were very close, but rather than let it make him bitter he finished his story by telling us that his daughter was the meaning of his life, and he was trying to teach her to be wise and as happy as possible.

It was one of those movies that makes me realise that I’m very lucky, that I should work harder, and that I should smile even when times are hard.

After another crazy video-game ride-in-the-dark journey home I crashed out and overslept the next morning. Very luckily my class was cancelled anyway.

Wednesday we took a trip to Koiteli Rapids, something of a hidden gem to us foreigners; before going there I would not have associated rapids with Finland. Despite the cold (8 degrees on the way there, 6 on the way back) we had a great time. It was very beautiful and it would be a lovely place to go back to in the summer. There’s a stage for performances, a summer cafe and many little places where you can have a fire and roast makkara (sausages).

I recommend taking the long way round unless you have a good mountain bike, otherwise you’ll be stuck on 6km of dirt road with a bad bike and sore muscles. It was such hard going on a racing bike with no gears. We stopped to ask for directions from one of the few houses along the way and were lucky enough to meet with a very friendly older Finnish man (with a super fluffy, super friendly dog) who confirmed that we were going in the right direction. 

The summer cafe (closed, sadly).

Towards the end of the week I met with my tandem language partner – I think she was a bit disappointed with my level of Finnish! I felt awful because I hadn’t really prepared very well either, but hopefully she’ll be pleased with my Finnish phrases next week.

Today I will finally meet my kummi family – I don’t know where we’ll go or what we’ll do, but I’ll post an update when I get home =)

2 Responses to “Canned Dreams/Koiteli Rapids”

  1. Katariina Partala October 1, 2012 at 8:51 am #

    Oh you went to the second hand store in Uusikatu?? I used to work there a few years ago! Just for a few weeks, but it was great anyway because the people were super friendly and the workers are able to buy the best stuff -50% before putting it for sale :p
    I’m also glad you liked Coffee House! .. And Finnkino! Aaaand Koiteli rapids!!! Your posts really make me miss Oulu because you write about the things I used to do when I still lived there 🙂 Anyway, I hope your kummi family will be a nice one!!

  2. saramay91 October 2, 2012 at 4:41 pm #

    Niinko? What a coincidence! That sounds like a great job too =) I love the Coffee House, I went back with a friend yesterday and tried the cookies, yum!! Please feel free to recommend anything if you ever feel like I’m missing anything =)

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