Jude in Helsinki

Helsinki is a parent’s dream.  Priority lines for people with strollers in the grocery store?  This is the type of thing I dreamed about as I maneuvered Brooklyn food aisles with a stroller, purse, gym bag, daycare bag and plastic basket brimming with dinner ingredients, all the while trying to avoid knocking anything over or taking anyone out.  Ahh, to then jump to the front of the line rather than standing, literally weighed down, while trying to entertain Jude as I waited to pay.  It almost seemed a selfish thought – having a child includes sacrifice, energy and patience – isn’t the supermarket struggle/juggle part of the deal?  Apparently it doesn’t have to be.  This utopia exists in Helsinki. Continue reading »

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Ferry terminal employee (not a mean one)

We previously blogged about the fact that everyone in the Pacific Northwest is nice and even tempered.  Since that time, unfortunately, we have found the exception that proves the rule: Orcas Island Ferry Terminal employees.  (Our opinions of residents of the places we visit are of course carefully reached through the foolproof and time-tested methodology of observing one or two examples of behavior and then reaching sweeping generalized conclusions based thereon.)  Sadly, it seems that ferry terminal employees in the PNW can be just as salty as the water their passengers travel over.

Our friend and traveling companion Elle learned this the hard way on our way back to Seattle from Orcas Island when she had the following exchange with a ferry terminal employee: Continue reading »

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