In contrast to my winter visits to Finland, the timing of Co-Create 2013 conference meant an opportunity to visit in the summer. Minna and Petri now live in Hameenlinna, which is cottage country 100 km north of Helsinki. As a way of beating jet lag, Minna suggested that we bicycle along the paths north by the lake (Vanajavesi).
In town, the Finnish sense of humour shows up at the HAMK University of Applied Sciences with a milk pier, for which the design is patented. It’s outside the dairy. Students produce products which the local neighbours enjoy.
Petri and Minna have a big back yard. The weekend was warm enough for brunch under the gazebo, but not warm enough for shorts.
One tourist attraction open on Sundays is the glass outlet in the town of Iitala.
Routing back from the ISSS 2011 meeting in Hull, Diana, Adam, Thuy and I stopped over for a few days in London. From King’s Cross, we rode the underground to go to the hotel in Earl’s Court. I might have checked the map more closely, as the West Kensington or West Brompton stations would have have been closer. Our luggage is on wheels, but we had a long walk.
Since Tokyo is so many time zones from home, I arrive a few days and go sightseeing to beat jet lag. On my fifth visit to Japan, I was the first of our meeting to arrive, with the group gradually gaining mass. I checked into the usual hotel, in an high rise tower overlooking the tracks by Tamachi station.
On a mission from DY, my first destination was Harajuku. I went looking for crafting supplies at the Daiso (100 yen) store.
The products aren’t made in Japan, but the variety is wider than in other branches internationally.
A few blocks further east, the Design Festa Gallery changes its installations rapidly, with emerging artists showing their work for nominal costs.
The variety of work includes paintings, photographs and sculpture by mostly Japanese artists.
While most rooms are barely large enough for an overnight stay — Design Festa also offers artists accommodations from late evening to early morning, when the gallery is closed — this week featured a wall where artists could claim an 80 x 80 cm display space. Read more...(1406 words, 51 images, estimated 5:37 mins reading time)
One of my longer trips to Finland was for 14 days in favourable fall weather. I was scheduled to teach a class in the Creativity Sustainability program. Immediately before and after that teaching, there was an opportunity to pick up some credits for my graduate studies. While this visit was busy with work, I also made some time for sightseeing, with the guidance of friends (and friends of friends).
My usual Aalto University campus (i.e. for engineering) is at Otaniemi in Espoo, on the west side of Helsinki. The class that I was teaching was at the school of arts and design (i.e. Taik), at Arabia Centre within Helsinki city limits on the east side.
The redeveloped factory facilities fit the feel for a design school. While about half of the Creative Sustainability students had undergraduate training in design, the other half were drawn from other studies from across the university.
As usual, the Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Art was nearby my apartment, so I went over to catch a showing. With warm fall temperatures, there were skaters on the plaza.
I was a volcanic ash refugee for eight days. In the minivan with a group leaving Pernegg en route to the Vienna airport, we received a mobile phone call telling us that flights were being cancelled. When we arrived at the Vienna airport, the UK airports were in the process of closing. Jennifer and I thought that motion towards Manchester was better than just staying in Vienna, so we boarded the first leg to Frankfurt. When we arrived at FRA, we discovered that the UK airspace had completely closed. Then we discovered the EU rule that once a passenger is taken on as a carrier, that airline is responsible for accommodations for the passenger until he or she arrives at the final destination, or negotiates an alternative routing.
This began an unexpected adventure of an extended European tour. On the first night, the airline sent us on a long taxi ride to Seeheim. The destination turned out to be the Lufthansa Training and Conference Centre, a wonderful facility that tourists are unlikely to see.
The coupons for dinner gave us the breadth of choice of continental cuisine from experienced chefs. After the meal, Jennifer and I walked around as much of the building complex as we could find. I read that there are bowling alleys at the facility, but we never found them.
We might have liked to extend our stay at this facility, but we were told the conference centre was booked full for that evening. We took a shuttle back to Frankfurt airport.
I was invited to the 2010 IFSR Conversation at Pernegg, Austria. The closest major airport was in Vienna, where I had never been, so I flew in a few days earlier to work off some jet lag. Directions from the Vienna Airport to the city centre via the City Airport Train was relatively straightforward, to the Wien Mitte station. Appreciating the sunny spring day to adjust my body clock, I decided the walk west and north wasn’t too far to to drag luggage. This path routed me over a canal section of the Wien River.
Japanese Toys! From Kokeshi to Kaiju display at San Francisco Airport, between the speedwalks to T3 departures. Discovered that UA720 at 5:44 a.m. PT must be the first flight out for the day, as under-capacity security personal said I was the third person checked that morning, around 4:15 a.m. (San Francisco Airport) 20131129 0429
Dual Meridian by David Griggs overhead in atrium by trains from Terminal A. Also heard Train Call song by Jim Green as doors were about to close, a welcome alternative to the usual boring warning tones. (Denver) 20131128 1041