|City workers have been busy planting flowers|
|The bathing beauties are back!|
I rode my bike today for the first time in months, and I can tell my body is going to be complaining tomorrow, especially my still-hurting back. But it was so fun to be able to get out and enjoy the sun (getting my much-needed vitamin D!) and ride around town. The city workers have been very busy clearing the streets and sidewalks of all the snow remnants and trash, and have been planting flowers around town. I know at home the crocuses and daffodils are long gone, but here, they are just now blooming! Lots of pansies are being planted, too.
|The pretty waterfront|
Along with spring comes another warm-weather nuisance. I'm not talking about bugs -- yet. I'm talking about noisy motor scooters, which really should be banned because of how loud and annoying they are. Probably 98% are driven by teenage boys, and while it's a great way for them to get around, the noise pollution is in the stratosphere. I thought that everyone rode bikes in Rauma, but apparently, those scooters are almost as popular. Other expats who have been here longer than us say that in summer, you can hear the scooters out at midnight, because it's still light out. I'm just glad we live in a relatively quiet area, away from the street. I feel bad for all those people who live next to busy roads.
|Flowers for sale in Old Town Square|
Already planning my next adventure for late May. My wish list of places to visit includes those I haven't been to, including Krakow, Vienna, Amsterdam, Oslo and the fjords of Norway, Dubai, Berlin, Barcelona and Budapest. I'd also like to re-visit Rome, Prague, and anywhere in France. We're already going to meet up with our daughter in London the end of June to go to Wimbledon, which we are very excited about.
I basically started looking for the cheapest airfare to any of my wish list places. It turns out the cheapest flights were to Rome and Barcelona. The catch was the times and layovers were horrible. That's the thing about these websites like Kayak, Orbitz and Skyscanner (which covers European airlines). Don't get me wrong, these sites are great for planning trips, and I've used all three of these, as well as others. You just have to be very careful when booking flights, because you could end up flying to Barcelona, but you have to go through London Stansted, and you have a 12-hour layover, or you don't leave Finland until 11 p.m. at night.
I ended up booking a flight to Stockholm, leaving from Pori, which is only 30 minutes from Rauma. I am very excited about the trip, as Stockholm is supposed to be a beautiful coastal city with lots to see and do (and shop!). And Tom and I plan to cross another place off the list in August. I'm leaning toward Norway, to take a boat ride through the fjords when it's warm enough to enjoy it.
Here's hoping for warmer weather for everyone!