I took a train for two and a half hours, and I arrived at Mikkeli in the evening. when I got off the train, I was really surprised that there was no platform! My agent, who arranged my homestay at Mikkeli, had told me that a host family would pick me up at the station. So I had thought I would just wait for my host family around the entrance gate. But there was only rail lines at the station and a small station building was just off the rail lines.... While I was looking nervously around there in semi darkness, my host father found me. I was so relieved when i met him....
My host family lived outside the city and it took about 40 minutes to get there by car.
There weren't any tourists around here and it was dark all the way to the house. I sometimes felt slightly uneasy if he wasn't my host father. "what should I do if I am kidnapped now!"
The first thing that I was interested in was a wood-burning stove. Once the stove was heated, it kept a high temperature of more than 100 degrees over a few days and it kept the rooms warm! Additionally, you can do cooking on the stove. It seemed like a excellent heater!
But...you have to gather wood for fuel and put wood on the fire. It seemed like a painful job....
Speaking of the fire, you need matches. For the first time in years I saw matches! I never had a chance to use matches in Japan.
Lots of things were placed on such high places. We have frequent earthquakes in Japan so we don't place our things on high places. We have been taught not to do it by firefighters since our childhood. It would seem there are few earthquakes in Finland. Mr. and Mrs. H, please don't do it if you live in Japan!
View from a window
A big lake was next to the house and there was a small cottage. It was a private Finnish-style sauna!
The temperature was 0 degrees. I heard it was unusually warm for this time of year. The ice on the surface of the lake was very thin.