Family, Finland, Thoughts & What-not

To say studying abroad was “an amazing experience” is an understatement… Going on exchange  has changed my life and the person I’m growing into. The things I did and experienced in such a short amount of time are all things that I never dreamt I would do or experience. This doesn’t even begin to touch on the impact the people that I’ve met have had on me. Regardless of where I was or what I was doing, it would never have meant as much without the people I was with. I grew to depend on and support these people over the months. Just as I love and consider my friends to be part of my family in Canada, I love the people I met while abroad.

Sem, Carson and Virginia…what am I going to do now that we’re not neighbours and I can’t see you every single day? Our homework sessions, morning coffees, and tea breaks throughout the day became part of my routine and I’m so sad that we won’t be having them anymore. I promise I will keep you up to date on my daily mishaps and the latest songs swirling around in my head (most likely a party or rap song), and you MUST all do the same.

Hannah, Verity and Jelena… the adventures we have gone on are some for the books and I really appreciate everything you’ve gone through with me! You guys survived 5 months of being friends with me… not always the easiest thing to do (I’ve heard). I can’t wait for our next sophisticated adventure, where or whenever it may be.

I don’t have enough time to sit here and type out every wonderful person that I met while on this exchange but for all of you that I’ve shared amazing memories with, please know that I do remember (if I don’t, the camera and facebook do, HAHA!). Each and everyone of you have sincerely impacted my life and I want to let you know I appreciate it. So dankje, grazie, kiitos, merci, gracias, tack, and Thank You!

As everyone goes home to familiar faces and embraces please remember the people that may have had an impact on you (I do not mean me, I mean anyone important to you!) and STAY IN TOUCH with them! Please don’t forget how incredible these times have been.

The last thing I want to say to you is, remember that Everything happens for a reason…

I love you all so much. I wish you safe travels, the best in your future endeavours, and to see you again!

Rayelle Fisher

Ends before it began I guess

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Family, Finland, Thoughts & What-not

Valentine’s Day <3

Back home in Canada (and North America), this day is most commonly celebrated as a romantic holiday with your significant other. Leaving those of us that are single to feel extra single and alone on this particular day. Couples try to do nice things for each other and treat each other while “singles” either hide in misery or join up with other singles and either try to ignore the day going on around them or act like they actually hate the holiday because it’s overrated (who doesn’t want to receive chocolates from someone though??).

Here in Helsinki however, Valentine’s Day is a day that you celebrate friendships and loved ones.. Brilliant! I could not have come up with a better use for a day dedicated to Love, spend it with all the people you care about and love, not just the ones you’re romantic with!

Today’s post is dedicated to all the most important people in my life… even if I do not specifically say your name in this post, just know that I am grateful for YOU everyday. I love all of you because you bring something special into my life that I would not have had without you.

My mom, Kim Fisher and her partner, my Step-dad Derril Halcro:

At Tyson and Amanda Lloyd's Wedding

Honestly, there aren’t words to explain the gratitude and appreciation for everything you guys do for me. You are constantly helping me out whenever I need it and I know that if I ever have any sort of problem, I can come to you. The beauty of your relationship is the balance.. Where you might be a little high-strung and stressed about something mom, D is confident and relaxed about it. You both understand me better than I understand myself, you know my patterns, you know when something is bothering me, you know exactly how to deal with me somehow.

My sister, Lacey Fisher:

With Harley

You are the other half of me.. I feel lost without you. Luckily, you’ve taught me a lot along the way and through the years so things are going well here in Helsinki. I’m learning to cook on my own, and when I’m cooking it’s like you’re right next to me helping me because you’ve always helped me. It might be why I love it so much, because you love it so much and it makes me feel so close to you. I have a neat birthday gift for you, it’s not much but I think you’ll absolutely love it. I can’t wait to see you and spend a weekend lounging around with you being goofy.. Nobody is like us so only you and I can be crazy like we are!

My best friends, Jade Ford, Dakota Adams-Beavereye, and Barrett Madsen:

Prime Rib Night

You guys know way too much about me, so it’s a really good thing we have the relationships we do. I don’t know many other people that could handle being my best friends on a regular basis, you three are amazing to me. The support and love you show me is astonishing.. The way you guys are there through absolutely anything, regardless of what I look like (which sometimes nobody really knows what’s going on), or what I do. I want each of you to know that no matter where you go or what you, I will always support you.

My 20th Birthday in PA

Jade, I want you to know how proud I am of you figuring out what you want in your future. Even starting to plan out what you’d like to do! Amazing! I’ve seen you working (tehehe many times) and you have one of the best work ethics I have ever seen next to my mom and my sister, regardless of the job or customer, you give it everything. I’m proud of obstacles you’ve overcome and the steps you’ve been taking to deal with anything you need to. I still believe we are sisters… One day we’ll figure it out. Regardless I’m beyond happy having you in my life at all!!!

My 20th BirthdayDakota, you’re doing amazing in school and I have to say I’m super pumped that it’s business (I know you don’t love it, but you can work in any field with a business background). School is hard, ask any student. But the dedication you show is unreal, you put so much of yourself into your work that it reflects in your grades. You get out what you put in. I miss hanging out and being ridiculous, laughing about the most insane things. When I hear girls talk about their “friends” and all the awful things they do to each other it baffles me because I have you and Jade and I know you girls have my backs no matter what.

Driving the 'vetteBMad, our friendship was an unexpected one, I gotta say. But it feels like you’ve been one of my best friends for years because we’re always on the same page. You’re always able to calm me down when I’m flipping out and that’s not always easy to do. Yeea sonnn! You’ve come so far and grown so much in the past year and I couldn’t be happier for you! Seeing you live it up with your crew, fall in love with the girl of your dreams (A Z06 with more ponies under the hood than the Calgary Stampede), named MURDRD, and start living for number one is such an improvement from the shape you were in a year ago. I’m so proud of you and how much you’ve grown.

My babysitter, Skylar LeBel:

Edward's Business Formal

Well not only are you one of my closest friends, you’re now my babysitter!! You have no idea how grateful I am to you for looking after not only Ace, my elderly snake, but also my baby girl (our puppy, I don’t actually have a baby. Just to clear any possible confusion!) Harley while my family is on vacation. When I get home I’ll return the favour sometime by looking after Tripp if you ever need, that is, if we can look past our differences.

My family in Vuolukiventie 1 B:

After beer pongAt Le Bonk

Moving to another city isn’t easy, moving to another country is hard, but moving to another continent.. now THAT was tough. Living here in Vuolu is the first time I’ve ever lived on my own and I must say, I love it. But the people here in Vuolu make it quite easy as I’m never alone for long. There seems to always be a supper of some nationality, or corridor party, or some type of event going on that make it feel like we’re all family here. We support each other when we need help, we invite each other to events, and we offer up our rooms to each other. All of you have made me feel so welcome here, not only in Vuolu but in Helsinki. It has helped tremendously and I would like to thank everyone for all that they do for one another. Sometimes you can’t hear the Thank you’s or Kiitos’ in the loud room of people but everything you do for everyone matters, and it just might have made someone’s day so please accept this as my way of saying Thank You forall your hard work!

While today is a day that we celebrate Love, I don’t think it should be limited to just one day. Nice gestures are welcome and appreciated by most people, everyday of the year. I want not just everyone listed here but everyone in my life to know that you matter, and I love you!

-Ray

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Finland, Miscellaneous

First impressions

So upon arriving in Helsinki I obviously found some major differences between how things are done here and back home in Saskatchewan, Canada.

1. The first thing I noticed was that some of the traffic lights (I don’t think all of them did this) turn orange/amber before turning GREEN… instead of turning orange/amber before turning RED! It completely threw me off!

2. Next, I noticed that our toilets in our apartments don’t have a handle for flushing.. They have a lever that you pull up.

<– This is flushing. Weird.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3. It seems that people from every other country EXCEPT Canada can speak AT LEAST TWO languages, usually three – five, but minimum two. Oh no big deal… So now I need to get on learning a second one ASAP.

4. Another one is how you buy pickles in a grocery store. It doesn’t come in a jar prepackaged for you… nope, you have to BAG it, like you do apples or lemons. On a side note it makes the rest of your fridge smell like dilly pickle goodness 🙂

Baggin pickles like it’s my day J O B. Yummm

 

 

 

 

 

 

5. The last thing I can think of right now is how you catch one of the MANY buses around here. You have to stand just about right on the street and put your hand right in front of the bus so as to say “Hey YOU! I need YOUR bus! Yes YOUUU, the one about to hit my arm!!!” They know you need to catch their bus this way.

So until I come up with more, these are the ones I can think of. I cannot wait to find out what other cultural differences we have 🙂

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Finland

What to do now that I’m here though…

Tomorrow is a holiday here in Helsinki so that means my weekend has started already! Yayy. What should I do??? If anyone is willing to help me out I’d love to hear it!

 

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Finland

Look out Finland, I’ve arrived…

Well after what seems like endless days of travelling I’ve made it to my very own Finnish apartment. It only took three long flights, about 8 hours in layovers,  15 hours total in flights, and an 8 hour loss. Oh and 1 night in a hostel before getting the key to my 69 square foot apartment. But me and all of my luggage arrived safe and sound and so I’m grateful!

I got very little sleep on any of my flights or during any of my layovers, I was worried about missing flights or someone taking my bags. But I think I’m caught up now. I can’t believe I’m actually here in Helsinki, Finland. It’s surreal, but I intend on living it to the fullest (while being safe, mom.)! I miss seeing everyone as often as I’m used to, that’ll be the toughest part in this, but meeting new people is such an exciting though at the same time!!!

The people that stayed in my apartment before me left some dishes, a set of sheets, and even a pillow. That takes a little bit off of my list of things to pick up today!

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Finland

Tick tock…

I obviously started a count down to my departure as soon as my flight to Helsinki was booked. Well in the hustle and bustle of finals and preparing for my trip, time got away from and now there is only 16 days until I leave! I am terrified… I don’t think Helsinki is ready for me, what will they do?! But I am beyond excited… what am I going to experience? Who will I meet? Where will I go? There is so much unknown but I’m ready for it… hopefully.

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