We didn’t have a car while in Oulu, and so spent a lot of time on the buses and walking. One day after dinner at a friend’s place, we walked in the twilight back to our cabin. On the way, we passed a lot of birch trees, the predominant species in Finland. They were still rather bare in early May, but their pale trucks reflected the wonderful golden light.
We walked by a lot of water along the way. Oulu has been built on the inlet of a river, and the city has really embraced the water. Again, it’s a place that has been built into the landscape.
The locals also love the outdoors, and take to it whenever possible, whether on land (nordic walking, cycling and rollerblading being favourite summer pasttimes) or on water.
Oulu is also a growing city. It has a top-class university, forestry (still mainly traditional woodchipping – the chimney is for the pulp mill), and technology – Nokia has its research and development base there. It all requires new accommodation, hence the presence of these cranes.
As we got closer to the coast, the sky became more spectacular.
Until it gave a fitting finale.