Monday, January 21
Sörnäinen metro station, 17:45
The early night meant that I woke up at 6:54 bright and breezy and completely awake. I could sniff the coldness of the air and felt like declaring a national period of hibernation.
The journey to work opened my eyes to the Finnish winter. I walked to the gas station with my ears burning from cold, slipping where footfall had trampled the snow into ice. I waited for a tram too cold to see if I could see a bus coming and, oddly, too cold to bother to run for it if it did come.
When I got to Arcada I said hello to everyone I saw and settled down to deal with my laptop. I installed the Todoist add-in for Outlook and tested it, and within five minutes I decided to subscribe to Todoist Premium for one month to test it. At the end of the month I will either cancel the subscription or turn it into an annual one.
At 9:30 Tomas and I began the second week of the Innovations course. The students had all worked in groups and prepared presentations on the design challenge that they had identified. We spent a god part of the day listening to the presentations, giving feedback, and leading discussion on each of them. Tomas had promised them last week that I had a reputation for harsh, hard-hitting critiques and so I tried my best to live up to this.
I gave Jutta her book lamp at lunchtime, when we took a break, and, as I had hoped, she really liked it. She sat opening and closing it and trying to guess which colour would come next. Rikku sat marvelling at it as well, while I ate Indian porridge (Saffola curry and pepper masala oats, since you asked) which we bought from Big Bazaar.
The presentations continued after lunch. We watched eleven in all. The topics ranged from the usual (living more ecologically, empathy for the stressed and depressed, people in apartment blocks should get to know their neighbours) to the less usual (why did they strip away Pluto’s planetary status?).
I stepped out during the final discussion to offer help to a few CMS students busy panicking about, or making final tweaks to, their presentations for tomorrow.
On the way home I pause briefly in the metro station to watch a busker named Levi Nean playing acoustic guitar and singing the blues, to the accompaniment of himself on pre-recorded electric guitar. It sounds good and I capture a commuter wearing headphones, completely oblivious to his existence.
In the evening Irma will decide that we should declare a hibernation period, even if the nation refuses to join us. We will go to bed at 20:20 and I will fall asleep seconds later.
I will sleep through the night and wake to the sound of Irma putting the kettle on at 6:50. This will feel like winter to me.