A lot has happened in the last couple of months, in short: I took a short but awesome trip to Brussels, school life got a little bit hectic, and summer vacation started two days ago. I started a page on Facebook for my boss a while ago, its purpose is to share stories and news about Finland, specifically my life here in Helsinki. If you read Chinese, you are more than welcome to check it out, it’s called 漫步在芬蘭. I promise to write more often here as well. Summer in Finland is always something to look forward to. I think we all miss sunshine and beautiful flowers in the north :) Here are several magical moments from late April to May.
It’s not my first time celebrating Chinese New Year in a foreign country, but definitely the first time in Finland. My friends told me that this afternoon there would be performances and activities related to Chinese New Year in Kamppi, so we went and checked them out. The event host was amazing, he spoke fluent Finnish, Mandarin Chinese, English and Swedish, and had to translate everything he said four times! Even his Chinese was better than mine! We also saw a wonderful show by dancing dragons and dancing lions, a group of Kung Fu students (who took everyone’s breath away with their energetic yet beautiful movements). There were also several booths selling Chinese handicrafts, local delicacies and other interesting things. Even though I didn’t get to spend New Year’s Eve with my family, I got to share and celebrate my cultural heritage with my friends :)
I can’t remember the exact number, but in the past I’ve been told several times that walking on frozen lake or sea is very dangerous. For one, you never know how thick the layer of ice is, or whether it is strong enough to support you. Today was my first time walking on the Baltic sea, I was so scared at first. For some reason, the sea looked dangerous… in a silent and formidable way >.> Thankfully Olli was there to give instructions: “Just follow the footsteps!” “Walk slowly, wait… walk this way.” To my surprise, I discovered that we weren’t the only ones walking on the sea. There were several people walking with their dogs, and some neighborhood’s kids sliding in the snow. Near the piers, there was an ice pool. Maybe it was just me, but I simply can’t imagine swimming inside the pool, it’s too crazy!
No partying, no special celebration. Just two simple folks enjoying a nice dinner and preparing for another year. We took a walk near the sea and saw beautiful fireworks, and then I had some thoughts…
No matter how cynical or optimistic we are, almost of us always expect the beginning of something to be great. The beginning of a new relationship. The beginning of a new journey. The beginning of a new year. For some, the year 2014 is a question mark, a mysterious wrapped present. Others have set goals to accomplish, hoping that this year will “mean something” to them and enrich them through incredible experiences and new knowledge. Yet at the end of the day, is it important to keep that positive attitude or face the reality? In other words, in this new year, is it important to have expectations and hopes, or is “everything is going to be ok” another lie? To some, a good start signifies a great, if not satisfactory ending. They believe every wise decision is like a solid foundation to every aspect of our life. Of course, they also acknowledge that sometimes things might not go as expected. Nevertheless, without a good beginning, it is almost impossible to have a successful ending. In my opinion, a good start doesn’t always lead to a happy ending. Nature, the environment are some of the factors which we can’t control. However, it doesn’t mean they have complete control of our every action. We as individuals determine the outcome of most situations in life. After all, who else is going to face the consequences of our decisions but ourselves? It is ignorant of us to assume that we are just helpless pawns in the game of life, nor is it fair to think all of us have the same potentials to turn things around or make the right decision. Nevertheless, we can use our talents and potentials to make our life more meaningful in 2014. It is important to realize that daydreams and ambitions are not enough, and it is not necessary to have a great beginning. In the end, the journey is what matters the most. Despite our different backgrounds and experiences, we can still make a difference in the world.