[From Beth] Before the kids hit their final wall for the evening, we managed to go out for a coffee with Henna, our-soon-to-be-third-exchange student, and her parents. Saara tells us the tradition in Finland is to eat dinner at 4:30 and have a coffee and small snack later. This was late enough (6:00 pm) to be a coffee date, which was great since none of us is up for dinner, but we knew Henna and her family were anxious about her trip, and that it would help to meet us.
Along the way, we got to see the beautiful architecture and stunning parks of downtown Helsinki. In the background of the family pic, you can see the City Hall (with the flowers on the balcony), the presidential palace (yellow, just beyond that) and a Lutheran cathedral (which I guess is redundant because all the cathedrals here are Lutheran). And of course you can see that Colin caught his second wind as evidenced by the nice face.
This is the swanky part of town, and the shopping’s definitely too ritzy for someone still reeling over the exchange rate. Maybe tomorrow we’ll return for a pastry and some yummy, Finnish coffee. Did you know the Finns drink more coffee, per capita, than any other nationality? We might be Finnish.