After I came back from Arkadia it was only a matter of hours before German K and I were meeting J&O for dinner again then going to see the movie Her, which I'd been dying to see.
We met them at Sushi Bar and Wine, the selfsame restaurant I'd stopped at last time for my last meal in Helsinki after returning from a roadtrip to the Turkku archipelago with German K and Hong Kong P. Hard to believe that was 8 months ago.
The food was just as wonderful, though expensive, as I'd remembered:
I ordered the vegetarian platter, with inari (sweet tofu pouches stuffed with rice), mushroom rolls, vegetarian Californian rolls with inari skins, cucumber, avocado, and egg, and a replacement for the middle nigiri that instead contained avocado and sweet shrimp. Blissfully washed down with a small Asahi beer.
It was then time for us to see Her while J went back to studying, trying to finish his last exam for a masters he's been writing for years.
The movie was wonderful and thought-provoking, just as I hoped it would be. I encourage anyone who's not afraid of a little awkward human-computer relationship stuff. It's a real thinker about how technology will affect us in the future. I doubt it's in the way it's portrayed, but there were some noticeable things I'll be taking back for my team to discuss.
After the movie O, German K, and I went out for a drink or two.
Our first stop was the old standby Teerenpeli.
I hadn't been there since my farewell party more than a year ago. It was weird to be back. It looked exactly the same except instead of recognizing most of the people there (okay maybe not most, but many), they were all strangers. It was sort of like the first time, again. Except no one was looking for me. And I wasn't looking for someone who looked like a Jamaican Homer Simpson.
I did, however, get to order my favorite drink from there: blueberry cider. The Finns really do know cider...so much better than the British. It was sweet and tart and refreshing. The way a cider should be. Perfect.
We went to another place after that, called Books & Antiques. The new pop-up speakeasy by the same people who put up Liberty or Death, as apparently that location is going through repairs from water damage.
They had an abbreviated menu in comparison to LoD, but that also made sense given the incredibly tiny space they had in there. There were only 5 tables to sit at. Luckily one was open when we got there.
The parties that came after us were not so lucky.
Despite the high price I ordered one of their signature cocktails, not wanting to waste an opportunity to taste glory. And glory it was. I ordered the Roasted Reindeer, as I'm sure Two would have expected from me. It was wonderful; bright juice tones with absolutely no nose of alcohol. This is the kind of cocktail I would qualify as dangerous. Delicious on its own. Terrifyingly good.
We walked slowly out after that, saying our goodbyes to O (I'd already said goodbye to J earlier in the night, figuring he would likely not come out to join us after starting with his studies). It was a sad goodbye, but a hopeful one; they said they would try to get to London before starting their world travels. I said they were welcome, anytime, of course. I do hope they stop by. It would be lovely to show them London as they've shown me great places in Helsinki.
German K and I walked home, reminiscing about how similar it was to be walking home together, towards Toolo, late at night. I had forgotten what it was like to walk home from wherever you are. What a luxury.
We stayed up talking for some time before crashing. I had a plane to catch the next day.
This was one of my most fulfilling trips to Finn since I've moved. But that's hard to say; it's always a pleasure to go back. I could really move back there again when I'm older.
Goodbye Finn, until next time.