Saturday, March 30
Virkkalan Kirkko, 14:20
We got up and got ready, and then at 11:30 we drove to Virkkala, to the church where Irma’s sister’s funeral will take place. We found it and Irma handed Jens the programmes I had printed out yesterday.
As promised, Naa and Sampo completely ignored us when they arrived. Given the narrowness of the corridor, and the requirements to greet everybody else, including the people standing either side of me, I counted this as a genuinely impressive feat.
Marja’s funeral proceeded in a mixture of Finnish and Swedish, and afterwards we went next door into a room where we ate a traditional Finnish funeral meal: karelian pies, salad, cakes, and coffee. The savoury vegan pie, and the vegan cake, both tasted delicious, and I stuck with them. My tastebuds and my stomach engaged in a short battle and my tastebuds won: I had much more than strictly necessary.
As we leave we go over to say goodbye to Naa and Sampo, who nod to indicate that they have heard us. Outside I photograph the church as we I stand outside the car, waiting for Irma to reverse.
We will stop Prisma on the way home and purchase a bottle of sparkling wine at the Alko to celebrate having got through the day, and having all tomorrow to ourselves.