August 6, 2015
The merry band of globe-trotting fellows arrived at the Helsinki airport and promptly mounted a bus to the hotel. The plane ride to Finland tested our endurance and stamina, and some of us were definitely exhibiting signs of sleep deprivation and exhaustion.
After checking in to the hotel and resting up for a bit, we took to the streets of Helsinki. The city had a different vibe than the great European capitals like London, Paris, and Rome. It was simpler; no grand monuments like the Eiffel Tower or Big Ben dominated the skyline. Instead Helsinki stressed a sense of practicality.
After a discussion about leadership on the Senate Square, the mentor/mentee pairs set off for a scavenger hunt around the city. We were tasked with gathering information on trolley fairs, scouting out dining options, interacting with the locals and sampling authentic Finnish cuisine.
After scouring Helsinki for a restaurant with enough open places for all 14 of us, we settled on a burger place specializing in reindeer burgers. Some of us were fans, others were not.
We closed the day with a meeting during which Dr. Rezelman praised the group of fellows for keeping up positive attitudes in spite of the lack of sleep and the challenges of adjusting to a new place, time zone, and culture.
– Thomas Ferguson, ‘16