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Today was both a momentous and anti-climactic day. Momentous: because Finland marks country #50 (and the halfway point to the 100 country goal). Anti-climactic: because the weather prevented us from actually seeing / doing much in Helsinki.

Such is life…

We awoke to cloudy, windy, cool, and mildly wet weather. By the time we left the ship (shortly after docking at 9am) and arrived in town via the ship’s shuttle bus (6 euro/pp – kids free), the mist had turned into more of a steady, light rain. Unfortunately, we were ill prepared for wet weather, discovering that umbrellas don’t work especially well when also trying to navigate with a toddler, stroller, and associated accoutrements. We walked around for about an hour and a half, but we never really made progress to major sights as the dodging the rain and attempting to keep Emerson dry was a major focus. The weather and its side-effects also made photography highly problematic. I managed a few half-hearted attempts at picture taking, but I only have around a half dozen rather uninteresting photos to show for our trouble.

By 11:40, we gave up and returned via the shuttle to the ship.

Happy in Helsinki (Despite the Rain)

Happy in Helsinki (Despite the Rain)

On balance, this worked out alright. It gave me an opportunity to take photos of the ship itself and to pack without having to rush around this evening. Libby and Emerson also spent time up in the toddler playroom, having a good time. And, while the limited exposure to Helsinki is a bit of a bummer, it’s not a big deal as we’ll likely return to this region to visit Estonia and Mariehamm (if not Lithuania too)—so Finland can easily be added back into the mix. In fact, had our time in port been longer today, I’d considered taking the ferry to Tallin to knock off another country, which would have shortchanged Finland much like we did last summer with Corfu in favor of Albania.

Tonight, we had our last meal in the MDR. While our waiter and assistant waiter were lackluster at best, our head waiter (Dorota from Poland) made all of the difference with respect to our experience. For those of you familiar with little kids, you’ll appreciate how rare it is to be able to sit through five consecutive “nice” (quiet environment, white tablecloth service), “long” (~1.5+ hour) meals without inappropriate sounds, bad behavior, crankiness, boredom, and/or general dissatisfaction with the food/service/environment on the part of a toddler. Happy kid(s) = happy parent(s). Enough said. Oh, and Emerson enjoyed a raspberry panna cotta tonight.

Tomorrow morning we’ll depart Vision of the Seas in Stockholm for a final couple of days before heading back to London for our homeward bound Delta flights on Tuesday.

I’ll try to publish my “official” cruise review prior to leaving Stockholm.

Today’s box score: +1 country (Finland)

One Response to “Cruise Day #7 – Helsinki, Finland”

  1. […] morning we awoke to cloudy but thankfully not rainy skies in Helsinki, Finland. When we visited Helsinki six years ago, it was pretty much a complete washout –tremendous rain hampered our ability to do and see […]

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