Alina Stein

Introduction

My name is Alina. I’m a 24-year old exchange student from Germany and I study at Lappeenranta Unversity of Technology – known as LUT

The new experiences ....

Kirjoittanut Alina Stein  Luotu 07.12.2015

Hei Everyone!

it’s me again, the German exchange student Alina.

As time goes by I want to tell you about more about what I am doing here in Lappeenranta during my stay. Believe it or not, as the weather is still extremely nice there are still so many possibilities for spending the spare time outside (and YES the sun is still shining and NO it’s not night at 2 pm already). ;)

So, some days ago as a friend of mine had his birthday we decided to make a campfire to celebrate it. All around the lakes there are places where you can start one. It is allowed and you only have to bring your wood but we bought some from a Finnish friend and had a nice party at the lake. The sunset was incredible and the weather was warm. But the best thing at the whole evening was my first aurora or polar light. It was incredible! I never saw one before and in the beginning we all thought it was just a cloud in the sky but then it turned green and twinkled. It was awesome and we all just stood there and were watching stunned. Even though I saw some more auroras now, I will always keep that one in mind.

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As I already told you so much about Lappeenranta and its nature let’s not forget the surrounding region. For example there is a great biking path leading from Lappeenranta harbor to Taipalsaari. Taipalsaari is a little municipality close to Lappeenranta (approx. 14 km) and I and my flatmate went there by bike. It was really beautiful as the way leads you through quiet forests (where we saw some squirrels that were really cute), along the lake and past small islands and a bunch of bridges. As it was an even way it was easy to cycle back to Lappeenranta but still, we were happy to go to sauna in the evening to relax our legs. If you don’t have a bike, you can rent them and collect a bicycling route map from the Tourist Info at the Sandcastle. The bicycling route maps are available in English and Russian, and they many other nice roads beside Taipalsaari one as well.

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As I love being outdoors I started geocaching back in Germany. When my Finnish friend Riina asked me if I would like to go geocaching with her and her dog I had to say yes, of course. So we drove to Joutseno (another also a small municipality close to Lappeenranta, actually it is a part of Lappeenranta, which took about 20 minutes. There were beautiful trails around the lake in forests that looked like forests from fairy tales. I couldn’t decide where to go first as it was so wonderful.

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Unfortunately we were not lucky concerning the geocaches as they were hidden way too well, but I learned a lot about the Finnish culture that day from Riina. For example I got to know that Finnish people drink extreme amounts of coffee. Basically they do it all the time. Did you know that? They have the highest coffee-consumption in the world! Or that there is no word for ‘please’ in Finnish but 5 for snow! Still, the Finnish people are so nice and helpful and not impolite at all.

And as every women loves to go shopping, I already went shopping in Lappeenranta. If you think that there are no possibilities to spend money in a small Finnish town you are definitely wrong! There are a lot of nice shops, I personally love Marimekko, which is a Finnish fashion company that produces bright, beautiful dresses and other clothes (a pity they are quite expensive). Actually there are all the brands I’m used to in Germany but everything looks a little bit more stylish and more modern as the Finnish women really like to dress well. I really had to keep in mind that I only have a 25 kg suitcase with me and that it was nearly full when I arrived here. ;)

Have a nice day, I will keep you updated about my next activities,

Alina