Like I said at the end of my last post, 2020 would be a life changing year for everybody. For some it was for the good, but unfortunately not for everyone. Whatever the outcome, I doubt that life would never ever be the same for anyone.
In early March I had my annual winter vacation. I travelled to Kemi, Lapland to work on my literary projects. I spent a good three days locked up in a vintage hotel room drinking wine and writing not reading the news at all. When I opened a newspaper in the express train taking me back home, covid had come to Finland.
I spent a few days in Oulu, partied in Tampere and returned home. The following day everything was closed down. A few weeks later they even closed the borders of Uusimaa, and I was imprisoned there.
I descended into some sort of apathy. I didn’t care to dress up, just walked around the apartment in a white bathrobe in which I also attended the online meetings at work. I drank too much wine, made deluded Instagram stories and started testing racing games of the early 1990’s.
After a month I had had enough and decided to go out for an adventure.
I reckoned that all the parks and trails in the capital region would be full of people and it would be safer to go somewhere else. I decided to go West.
I was right. There were only a handful of passengers in the train and I was alone in my car.
This was as far as I could go. The borders of the region were still closed and guarded by the police and military. Although I had a permit to move freely because of my work, I decided to obey the law.
Another, smaller train was waiting for me at the station.
I did remember to buy the ticket, yes. However nobody came to check it. The conductors had been instructed to avoid contact, so they weren’t interested in checking them.
This is the railway station of Hanko, one of the most beautiful 20th century stations in Finland in my opinion. But well, I do love functionalism.
The whole town was completely deserted. It was lunchtime and I was desperately longing to find a grill to get a burger.
I did find one, but it was closed. By now I was very hungry.
I started looking for an open restaurant, anything would do, really. But it was as if covid had wiped off all life from the town.
I couldn’t help but to admire the architecture. The water tower is to the left, the church is to the right.
A memorial for something, which probably has something to do with the wars. I didn’t examine it closer. I really don’t care about the war.
I figured, that the town’s hotel would be a place I could get something to eat from. But even their restaurant had closed because of covid.
I finally was able to find a kebab place, which was open. It was take away only, as restrictions forbade eating inside. I went to a park and had my lunch in sunny, yet windy spring air. And after that I continued towards my destination.
So what does this have to do with urban exploration. Nothing. I was absolutely not interested in abandoned places that day. I wanted to go to the nature.
But it soon turned out, that things weren’t quite what I had expected.