Monday, July 30, 2007

Visa, visa, visa

One of the main things that's going to be interesting in this whole process of moving to Finland is getting a visa that will allow me to work there. This is important, mainly because i am not independently wealthy and will need to work as soon as i get there.

I was informed of something i didn't know existed called a "working-holiday visa" which is easier to get than a straight up working visa and lasts a year in some cases. In my preliminary investigating, however, i found Americans aren't eligible for this. Suck. After more investigating and screwing around on the Directorate of Immigration website for Finland, i looks like in order to work in Finland, i need a residence permit. Now i'm confused. I don't think a residence permit is the same as a visa, but at the same time i wonder...

There's a Finnish consulate here in Atlanta that i just need to go to and figure everything out, but i've been putting it off, because i'm scared they're going to hate me and make sure i can't get into their country ever again. I realize this is an irrational fear, but it's very real in my mind. Hopefully i'll summon up the courage soon, but i really should get the ball rolling on this thing.

That reminds me, i need to renew my passport...

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Teach Yourself Finnish

A couple weeks ago i received my Teach Yourself Finnish book and CD's along with my Finnish-English pocket dictionary from Amazon. I don't have any delusion in my mind that it's going to take me forever to learn this language, but i still can't help but be optimistic.

I've been practicing along with the CD's in my car, and i think i'm getting pretty good. My favorite phrase i've learned so far is "silloin tällöin" which means "now and then". It's my favorite because it sounds really cool. I also like "hyvää päivää" a lot also. That means "good day".

The thing that's taking the most getting used to is the vowels. They're 8, and there's short and long forms. The trickiest is "y" because it's doesn't sound anything close what it sounds like in English, so i'm not going to even try to type it out phonetically. I think i've got it down now though.

Speaking of which, i think i'm going to practice now...

Moving to Helsinki

While it's been a long time coming, i've finally officially decided i'm moving to Finland next year. The goal is by summer of 2008 to be living in downtown Helsinki. This blogs purpose is going to be to document the struggles, joys, frustrations, etc. that i'm about to start going through. It'll definitely be cool to look back on in a year or so. And also, it'll be a good way to share with my family and friends how things are going once i've actually moved.