Friday, July 23, 2010

Insläppt i USA

Så var jag då tillbaka i USA efter en mycket lång resa. Jag åkte från Lepplax med nattåget på tisdag kväll. Onsdag morgon hämtade jag mitt visum från amerikanska ambassaden i Helsingfors och på eftermiddagen gick flyget. Jag landande i New York samma kväll. Det var inga problem att komma igenom passkontrollen och tullen - på mindre än en halv timme var allt klart och snart får jag mitt "green card" (permanent uppehållstillstånd) på posten (visumet ger i princip bara inresetillstånd). Jag tillbringade natten på hotell i New York, och på torsdag morgon flög jag till Montgomery, Alabama. Resan förlängdes av ett flygplansbyte pga mekaniskt fel, men annars gick det bra. Det var dock jätteskönt att äntligen vara framme. Jag möttes av Weslie, hans föräldrar Wayne och Sylvia, och hans moster Cecelia - och av en 40-gradig värme. Lite svettigare än Finland. Till skillnad från hemma tillbringar man så lite tid som möjligt utomhus...
Torsdag kväll var tänkt att vara en lugn kväll med god mat och ett varmt bad, men det blev inte så. Sent på eftermiddagen var Wayne ute och arbetade i trädgården när han blev stungen av flera jordgetingar. Han reagerade våldsamt och gick in i en anafylaktisk chock på 15 minuter. Weslie och jag var de enda som var hemma. Vi hann inte köra honom till sjukhus innan han svimmade av och fick problem att andas. Ambulansen tog minst 30 minuter på sig att komma hit - och det var 30 mycket långa minuter. Han kom sig dock till sjukhus där han snabbt blev bättre, men han fick i alla fall stanna kvar över natten för observation. Nu är han hemma och mår bra, men han har fått med sig några Epipen som han kan ta ifall det skulle ske igen. Vilket dramatiskt mottagande jag fick - hade inte räknat med att få praktisera mina sjukskötarkunskaper så snabbt :)!
I morgon ordnar Wayne och Sylvia fest för Weslies släkt och vänner som inte kunde komma till Finland. Jag ser verkligen fram emot att få träffa alla. Bilder kommer så fort som möjligt. Sedan blir det att förbereda sig för att flytta till Butler, Pennsylvania. På onsdag åker vi iväg med flyttlasset. Spännande!

Last two weeks in Finland

After our honeymoon we had two weeks left in Finland. Those two weeks we spent visiting with family and friends.

We visited my friend Linnea and Ruben in their little summer cottage.

Linnea with their son Titus.

We have two members in my immediate family who are entering the 30's this year; my brother-in-law Martin in July and my sister Mikaela in August. Also, my oldest niece Ellen turns 8 in the end of July. In addition, me and Weslie were about leave for the US and my sister Carina and her family for Sweden, so we decided to do a combined birthday/farewell party at my parents cabin.

It was a hot day (for Finland), 91 degrees, so almost everyone got in the water.

And of course, everyone admired the new addition to our family, my brother Patrik's second child, a boy named Edgar, who was born a few days before our wedding celebration.

We also took my nieces Ellen and Hannah to Rosenlund parsonage and garden.

The girls wanted to go to McDonald's, but we convinced them to go to the cafe on the grounds. The food there wasn't as delicious of course, but they graciously agreed to do it, for Weslie's sake. You can tell what Hannah is thinking though...

My brothers Daniel, Joel and Paul wanted to show Weslie some real go kart, so we went to a big outdoor track. We won't tell who won - or who came last... Weslie wants to say though that he did beat everyone in putt-putt golf :)

Weslie returned the favor and showed the boys how to throw and kick a football. I don't think we have to mention who was the champion in this game.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Honeymoon, England VIII - Hastings and Battle II

The very spot where William slayed (slew?) Harold, thus solidifying the Norman Conquest. William ordered a church built on this site to atone for the blood shed (great theology William!), and an alter built on this exact spot - the felling of the king:

Shortly after, William sponsored the building of a monastery:

Inside the old monastery:

A private school on the grounds...lucky Brits!

That's it from the honeymoon. So far, we're living joyfully ever after (even if not happily ever after)!

Honeymoon, England VIII - Hastings and Battle

Our flight was scheduled to leave very early on Wednesday, so we decided to leave very early on Tuesday, drive to see where the Battle of Hastings took place, then spend the night near the airport. We were very glad we did. This was just on the road to Hastings. The cities surrounds it are introduced with signs reading "Welcome to 1066 Country". I really turned into a little kid:

The old city, just outside the medieval gate to the cathedral built by William the Conqueror:

The medieval gate:

Here is where the famous battle took place. Yes it's a field, but it is AWESOME!

Just behind us was a cathedral, so we walked this path and read a blow-by-blow account of the battle. It was really, really neat. Once again, I felt like a little kid:

Honeymoon, Day trip to France III

The main attraction in the old town was the cathedral (surprise, surprise). It had a very unique separated, or hung, ceiling:

Rather nice:

By the end, though, we were both ready for un café and a break:

Wish you were here:

Honeymoon, Day trip to France II

We were heading back to Calais, but saw the old walled portion of B-s-M, so we decided to give it a try:

We were not disappointed. Apart from the cheese, dried meat, and wine, this is the France we were hoping to see:

The city center had a neat garden display with oversized versions of gardening tools and various vegetables:

More pretty flowers:

Honeymoon, Day trip to France

The car ferry from Dover to Calais, France was only 25 pounds, so we had planned a day to just drive around and eat French food. First stop, croissant, pain aux chocolade, and a fresh baguette:

Since we hugged the coast most of the trip, this was our view. Not too bad:

We decided to get out of Calais and ended up in Boulogne-sur-Mer. After walking around for a while, we found a nice-looking cafe for lunch:

Three course meal started with pickled herring and potatoes for Kristina and a seafood quiche for Weslie. Both were excellent:

The main course for both was Boeuf pictures were taken for some reason. Desert for Kristina was a apple tart with coffee ice cream and for Weslie a chocolat and pear tart:

Honeymoon, England VII - Canterbury Cathedral (inside, etc., etc.)

Attached to the Cathedral was a beautiful monastery:

View from the outside:

This is the ceiling of the monastery's chapel, which is made entirely out of Irish oak:

As is typical, the grounds held a very nice garden:

Looking back at the Cathedral:

Honeymoon, England VII - Canterbury Cathedral (inside, etc.)

We took too many pictures of stained glass, but it is just "so nice."

This is one of the alters from the whole other church and catacombs underneath the cathedral. Yes, and entire other church. It is here where pilgrims would come to see Thomas Beckett's tomb (I think). We weren't allowed to take pictures down here, which I found out right after I took this one:

The regalia of the Black Prince, who is buried here:

Here is the very site where Thomas Becket was martyred by Henry II:

A very famous couple who once visited the Cathedral: