I’ve had a nasty flue and cough the whole week – and have had to stay indoors most of the week, trying to get better at the same time while working hard to create amazing IT-solutions for our customers at work. As my mind had been so set to these goals: get better, finish the task at hand – I was actually taken by a surprise, as a clever ploy had been devised for me.
On friday afternoon Satu ordered me to meet her in Itäkeskus for late lunch – as we did not have anything specific to eat at home. Stated plan was to eat something and then get back home to bed to rest and to try to get better. After eating it became evident that there were other plans, and even though I tried to object – I was unable to derail the plan from unfolding.
In utter disbelief and mystery I had to follow Satu into the city. As we got to Hakaniemi I still had no clue what so ever. It took all the way to the corner of Hakaniemi market square before Satu had to confess that I was now kidnapped – and was forced to enter Hilton Helsinki Strand hotel, which was to be my prison for next few days.
As I entered the room with keycard in my hand..
I naturally noticed the view ..
As well as tools of this dungeon..
It was clear that my captivity would be an experience.
I had tried to request help via Facebook, but only got some sarcastic comments and few ’Like’-presses.
I was able to start negotiations of my release in a candlelit bubble bath, but to no avail. I was to be bound to this luxurious weekend to the full extent.
Next morning opened to a beautiful sunrise and I immediately started to recognize stockholm syndrome symptoms in me.
After generous and healthy breakfast buffet I was taken outside and was forced to wander around the city.
I assume that the plan was to keep me in constant move, so that potential search & rescue missions would be unable to pinpoint my exact location. Even though I took photos with my iPhone and uploaded ’em to Flickr – I wasn’t rescued in time.
We finally visited Chjoko at Liisankatu, tasting some handmade finnish chocolates — and almost stayed in for the chocolate brunch, which they serve on saturdays.
Sun was shining and Helsinki looked as beautiful as ever.
Went by the vintage store Play it again Sam, but passed on the possibility to buy expensive old school garments.
Went to see once again design sale – organized this time by Ornamo in Valkoinen sali.
Three floors were packed with people.
Some of the usual suspect were there..
And we did see some interesting things ..
But mostly things presented and on sale did not impress me much. Either it was because I was still feeling a bit sick, or that I was not in the target demographics.
But I did find something!
A funny new hat!
We walked around the city center, seeing new shops, restaurants and in general just enjoying the vibe of modern almost metropolitan city.
Can you believe it is already december in Helsinki?
And no. We did not go and try Jumpin-suits.
As we tried to find a proper place for lunch we noticed that many of the places we would have wanted to go, did not open ’till three or four o’clock. Therefore we decided to do an easy choice and head down to Stockmann’s department store and eat at F8.
Stockmann’s was packed with people doing their christmas shopping, but we managed to fight our way through.
Ceasar salaed with salmon filet is a standard dish for us. A delicious and light lunch, after which we had plenty of time to get back to the hotel to relax.
As we got back to the hotel I learned that some physical torture was in the program.
We visited small gym on the 8th floor of the Hilton Strand – and admired the view.
Gym with a view is actually nice idea, as is a pool on the roof.
Unfortunately the water felt like cold ice water. Something you could luckily heal with a healthy dose of heat in sauna.
After the sauna it was time to enjoy some refreshments and necessary liquids to replace all the sweat lost in the gym and in the sauna.
Negotiations for my release continued in the evening at König.
These photos do not do justice for the food, though the problem was restaurant’s fault. It was actually hard to see the real color of the food – as mood lights distorted colors.
As starters we took traditional buckwheat blini with whitefish roe, sour cream and red onion.
For main course I had crispy fried loin of pork with Madeira sauce and braised sauerkraut.
And Satu as my captor ordered glow-fried whitefish with hollandaise sauce with fried shrimps & rustic bread and horseradish flavored potatoes.
Delicious and insanely fulfilling.
Negotiations continued throughout the night and after lengthy discussions in a bubble bath a covenant was made. Next afternoon would end the captivity – and we would return to the peaceful serenity of Puotila.
At the morning breakfast I think I shed a tear as I realized that next morning there wouldn’t be a buffet table filled with fruits, bacon and all sorts of continental treats.
So looking back this time spent in captivity I have to say that it wasn’t that bad experience – and I survived it admirably without any major trauma, except for the fact that champagne can run out!
Tomorrow is my official birtday, 5th of December – so this was a genuine surprise.
And yes, it is true. I’ll be 27 years old. Again.