Just a Hole in the Ground

Winter approached Finland. Leaves fell off trees, daylight vanished. The world was dark, grey, cold and dull. To keep depression away I booked a ticket on a large student cruise.

The cruise was from Turku to Stockholm, but it was just half of the fun. The organizing university was in Jyväskylä, so I travelled there, boarded a bus to Turku with the other students and started the party.

I came back the following evening drunk like a skunk, and the following day was one of my worst ever. I was staying at a friend, and when she saw what a ruin I was, she just told me to stay for another day and ordered pizza.

In my delirious state I remembered a discussion with a girl I met on the boat. I told her about my habit of photographing abandoned places, she told me about an abandoned school in Säynätsalo, an island nearby.

I did a little bit of research, and there indeed were news about a former school. Built in the 1950’s it was a local landmark, but it had fallen into disrepair, was closed and severely vandalized. I looked up the place on the map and drove to Säynätsalo. On the site I found this.

The school had been in the hole on the right. The excavator was still on the premises finishing its job, so I couldn’t have been more than a month late. Disappointed I returned to Jyväskylä and went back to bed to heal myself.

This is the side of urban exploration you don’t often see in pictures. Finding amazing abandoned locations is just half of the story. The other half is this: pointless tours to faraway places, disappointments and holes in the ground. But it’s a part of the hobby, I guess.

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