Tuesday, December 12
The weather continues to change every day. 48 hours ago I walked around the woods in late summer. This morning I left the house into thick, falling snow. It felt pleasant, insofar as the temperature had remained above zero and the snow fell vertically, so I walked to Puotila in a winter wonderland.
I had left home five minutes early, and avoided waiting for a bus, so I just managed to catch the tail end of the early morning rush hour, and stood on a crowded metro all the way to Sörnäinen.
I began the day by reading through two papers that Frida has found about modelling social networks. One of them seemed exactly what we have needed: a clear theoretical model of the behaviour within a social network that we can use to model behaviour in Facebook. The other seemed equally interesting, and a worthwhile find, although not necessarily as immediately relevant.
Frida has a tutorial scheduled but failed to show up. I reread the papers and filed them away carefully. I will want them again very soon.
I answered a mail from an doctoral student in Tampere who had asked me to help supervise her several years ago. Her letter asked if I would attend her seminar on Thursday. I politely declined, pointing out that I did not know anything about this seminar, and had other plans for Thursday.
After lunch Mirko processed Tova’s pecha kucha and we had the first successful example of a student producing learning material; our second if we count the pecha kucha Frida did over summer, that remains unprocessed. I suggested that we get that one finished and then launch both in early January.
I look out of the window and notice that the snow continues to fall heavily. I go downstairs to try to photograph something suitably wintry and stand watching through a large window for five minutes. I imagine that I could get a perfect image if someone walked past right now. In the end I take an image devoid of people and turn away. Just as I do a woman in a red coat with a white dog walks past. She has disappeared before I take a photo.
At 14:00 Mats and I will have a meeting with an MA student who has returned to study after time off for illness. We will welcome him back and make plans to get him back up to speed.
At 14:40 I will leave to take a tram to Töölö where I will meet Irma and Naa. We will celebrate Christmas with Ukki while shaking snow off ourselves.
Afterwards we will set out to take Mummi home. We will discover that the outside has become impassable. Various taxis and ambulances have parked outside to take people away and the slush has formed into deep waves and pools that Mummi’s rollator will not navigate through it. I will end up half carrying both to where Irma has driven the car onto the pavement in a gap between the taxis also parked on the pavement.
Once we have got Irma’s mother home we will drive to our house where Irma will notice that the drains have got blocked. She will go to see Niilia and I will work outside in the rain and slush clearing the drains and pushing the snow off some of the paths.
We will agree that we have experienced the worst weather of this or last winter.