Friday, January 31, 2014

Quick Update - Finland

As I write this, it is 7:30am, and I have just boarded a train on my way out of Helsinki into the middle of nowhere - Jakobstad, or as Finns say - Pietarsaari. I am heading to a wedding of my dear friends, which I will be photographing - Nate & Pernilla. 

Now for someone who has lived her whole life outside of my motherland, it's always quite an interesting experience coming back here. It never feels quite right, as it never feels like home. Every time that the plane lands here, I always get an overwhelming sense of uncomfortability and homesickness. This is simply because every time that I am here, I feel like I need to force myself to fit in and try to be "Finnish" when I clearly am not anymore. And probably also because this time of year, it's very dark, although there is lots of snow which is nice. 

But then again, it is nice to come back here every now and again to see the snow - and in my case on this trip, more than just Helsinki and Espoo.

On this train ride, I am slowly starting to see more and more of the country, as the sun (well... what little sun actually comes out this time of year) begins to rise and shed it's light. The further north I go, the city starts to fade and the countryside begins to show up. I guess when you don't travel around this country too much, you don't realise just how spacious it really is. It gets quite snowy.

As I am sitting on a train, pictures aren't quite turning out very well. But I promise to have some up in the next few days!

That's just a quick update of where I am currently.

x Veevley

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Bookworm - The English Bookshop - Uppsala

As I mentioned in yesterday's post, I was shown a bookshop here in Uppsala and have decided to call it Viivi's paradise from now on. I also may have gone a little bit book crazy and bought five books... Even though I'm in a foreign country and I have a plane ride to take them on... Hmm... As long as my bag doesn't weigh too much, all will be good.

I have two favourite books of all time and one of them is 1984 by George Orwell. I also really loved Animal Farm by him. So as the author of one of my favourite books, I saw this and figured I needed to read some more of his work, so I bought it. Also - the cover's pretty awesome I think.

My second favourite book of all time is Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman... Granted, I absolutely love everything that I have read by him so it was hard to pick a favourite. Anyhow, this is a book that I have been trying to get my hands on for an extremely long time now and I am so glad to finally have found it! It is now mine and shall have a special place on my bookshelf.

Yes, I bought another Gaiman book. I saw it in the store and actually, the cover was the first thing that caught my eye. When I realised it was another Gaiman book, I figured there was no way it could disappoint me. We shall see how it is, but I'm sure that it's going to be superb.

Another book that I finally got around to reading this year and absolutely loved was Good Omens by Neil Gaiman & Terry Pratchett. That is what sparked my love for Terry Pratchett books. The cashier at the store was lovely and began to rave about the new covers on these books which of course made it a 100% purchase for me, cause who doesn't want an epic book with an epic cover? Just saying.

Last but certainly not least, I got one more Terry Pratchett book. Pyramids. I had never actually heard about this one specifically, but the cover looked intriguing as did the back, so I decided to have a go at it. I will let you know what I think as soon as I finish it. But as always, Terry Pratchett is an extremely intriguing author and I'm sure I'll enjoy reading his works.

Hope you guys enjoyed that. Will let you know what I think of them as I finish reading them.

x Veevley

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Travel Post - Sweden - Part Two

I made the decision to include two days in the post below. Without ridiculously long introductions, shall we get going? DAY ONE (well really day two,  first day being featured on this post).

On my day yesterday we went for a little bit of a 'showing Viivi around walk,' just so happens that it is extremely beautiful here and I just happened to take my camera with me as well... Got to see lots of snow and green trees. It was absolutely beautiful.

We encountered a horse on the way back and decided to greet him/her... How am I supposed to know what gender it was... Anyhow, this was pretty brilliant moment for me because you don't really see any horses in Jerusalem, roaming around on Jaffa street, unless they're police horses, and even then it's rare... I may have been more excited than Alfie. Maybe... 

Above you can see the back of Alfie and Dan's heads. They are shaking snow off some trees.

We then went past the store to get some stuff for fika (coffee break), and went back to the house. Also went to go see a movie with Dan & Sara later that night. 'Twas a pretty brilliant, chill day.

DAY TWO (actually day three).

Lunch with the Woodrows, pizza made by Sara and Alfie. And it was extremely good too.  Homemade is always the way to go when it comes to food of any kind. 

I then took a walk around the city with the lovely Sara, and went to a lovely place which will from now on be referred to as Viivi's paradise - The English Bookshop. First off, I got some incredible books which I have been wanting to read for an incredibly long time - that will all be on tomorrow's blog post, so be sure to check back. Secondly, the owner had had dinner with... WAIT FOR IT ... Terry Pratchett!!!! He told me he had been at a dinner with Terry Pratchett and 20 people or so in London this past year. He also said that Pratchett had gone round the table and talked to everyone there. Uft man... Jealousy in absolutely every inch of my being. Anyway... I just thought that was super cool. So if you happen to go by this place - ask that guy to tell you some stories.

We then headed out with Sara to a few stores. Firstly we stopped at a store called DesignTorget (which means Design square) which is similar to a place we have in Jerusalem called Soho. Basically this store has a bunch of really quirky and unique household items (kitchen utensils, etc...) We then headed off to a store called Monki where we did some clothes shopping before heading back to the house for dinner and a game of Hide & Seek involving all five of us - Alfie, Stellan, Dan, Sara and me. Overall - a pretty successful day, in my opinion.

One more day here. See you all tomorrow.

x Veevley

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Travel Post - Sweden - Part One

I can't even begin to tell you how brilliant this country is. In all seriousness, as we drive around, I am breathless at how beautiful this place is. During my stay in the lovely land of Sweden, I am staying in Uppsala, which is just a little ways outside of Stockholm.

I started off my full day here in the best way possible - good coffee and better company. After a very relaxed morning, I headed off to the city to meet up with a friend of mine for lunch and to walkabout the city. The above is a picture of the dome church in the centre of Uppsala, and a bell that was (as I was told) gifted by the king to his beloved wife some hundreds of years ago. That is the extent of the story I heard - if this isn't true, please do correct me. ;) 

More things in the city. Firstly, I made friends with some ducks. The one in the picture above is the only one who would allow me to take a picture of him... I have named him Donald and he shall be coming home to Israel with me. Oh wait... I have a plane ride. Nevermind. The second photo is the river that runs through the city, which I thought was so unique and intriguing. I had to spend a few moments just taking it all in on the bridge... And then the wind came along and I needed to run to warmth. 

I then met up with the Woodrows (the most lovely family I have ever met), and we went inside the Dome church. That's Sara and Alfie in the picture above lighting a candle in the dome church and a chandelier there too, simply because, details must always be added.

We then went for fika, which is apparently a huge thing here in Sweden, at one of the most warm and quaint places I've ever been to. It felt like home... Except with extremely good pastries and amazing coffee. Coffee and Semla - Swedish delicacy and expertise when it comes to baking. 'Twas extremely good.

I mentioned these guys briefly earlier... The above pictures are the Woodrows, great friends and the people I am staying with here in Uppsala. Absolutely love these guys. Firstly, their two kids (Alfie and Stellan) are the most adorable kids in the world. Secondly, Sara (http://www.smä and Dan are some of the most talented and amazing people I have met in the universe. Without getting too sentimental - I am so glad I know these guys, quality people.

Anyhow that is my first blog on Sweden. See you tomorrow!

x Veevley

Monday, January 27, 2014

Quick Update

Hey guys! So I have arrived in Sweden and it is absolutely beautiful here! There's just the right amount of the snow (not too much, but enough to make everything look absolutely white and beautiful). 

Keep your eyes out for a Travel Tuesday post tomorrow with more on this place, and better photos. Just figured I would send a little greeting letting you all know that I am having a blast, loving this place!

x Veevley