Saturday, 10 August 2013

Postcrossing gathering in Helsinki

For the first time I was participating in an international gathering of Postcrossers - this time I was lucky to accompany Ola to Helsinki.

The gathering gets officially opened.

We met next to the monument of Carl Gustaf Emil Mannerheim, Finnish military leader. And his horse of course.

The first major point on our list is the Suomenlinna fortress, known also under the Swedish name Sveaborg. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The fortress is built on six islands.

To get there we will need to take a ferry. Group picture first, to make sure we do not lose anybody on the way.

If you think that only humans participated you are obviously wrong. Lots of toy travellers came to share the fun. They came from Germany, USA and Hong Kong, just to name a few.  

I was impressed by the calm all around. I love this kind of landscapes. Hard to believe we are in a capital city of a European country.

Have you heard the horn? Well, some bigger vessels pass here too. This one is probably going to Sweden. Or maybe to Tallin? Nobody really knew. [Update! Ola has found it - it connects Helsinki with Stockholm].

Finally, we arrive to the fortress. It fits very naturally into the islands.

 The white flag with the blue cross is the national flag of Finland.

I am sure that you have noticed that this flag resembles a lot the flags of other neighbouring countries. Well, this is not a coincidence. All Scandinavian countries have in their flags the Nordic Cross.

Here comes the fortress itself. It is not a real defence line anymore of course.

Though some of the walls are pretty high.

And there is still some artillery there. I doubt however if these cannons are still operational.

Another group picture to check if the entire team is there, on time for the second part of the party.

Those of you who have ever participated in a meeting of Postcrossers have for sure already guessed that the second part of the garthering will be all about postcards. First of all buying.

Then writing them down.

If you believe that it was not that much work you need to realise that each card normally gets signed by everybody. Or almost everybody.

So finally each Posctrosser gathers its pile and gets it ready for boarding into the mailbox.

No surprise it took us up till sunset.

But it was worth it, I really enjoyed the time there. And finally the surprise - I managed to meet the Little Mail Carriers' cousin! He is such a celebrity that I was really honoured to shake his hand.

I strongly recommend to any of you who would have this opportunity to participate in one of the upcoming gatherings of Postcrossers!

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