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FinLoveBret
Posts: 18
Joined: Thu Sep 25, 2003 8:34 am
Location: Madison , Wisconsin, USA

ok tell me this

Post by FinLoveBret » Thu Sep 25, 2003 12:28 pm

So is most of what you have said from personal experience or from hearing it from others is my scenario similar to alot youve heard of went through yourselves? I mean obviously youve made it over there and life didnt come to a dead hult and you eventually found a job right. And by the way yes she is blond blue eyed bombshell the sexiest little thing ive ever seen. She makes it all worth it.


Yeah my spelling and grammer stinx but what can i say atleast i admit to it. Bret

ok tell me this

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Hank W.
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Re: hmm

Post by Hank W. » Thu Sep 25, 2003 12:32 pm

FinLoveBret wrote:well then i guess if that comparison is true then rovaniemi pretty much sux.
Well, sizewise atleast. But theres loads of tourists, and it is the local 'state capital' so there is *something* going around.

populationswise...
Rovaniemi 35 718
in Wisconsin: Greenfield 35 437

Helsinki as about the size of Milwaukee, some 500 000 (+adjoining closer to 1 million)
Cheers, Hank W.
sitting here like a lemon looking for a gin.


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Phil
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Re: another ?

Post by Phil » Thu Sep 25, 2003 12:34 pm

FinLoveBret wrote:Ok so for you all who came to finland as a foriegner tell me how is the overall ombience twords americans in finland. Are people pretty nice overall or is there a bit of tension twords us. From a political standpoint i would think so.
You have nothing to worry about unless you're a loud-mouthed, arrogant, ignorant, cockey George Bush-loving American.


PeterF
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Re: alright

Post by PeterF » Thu Sep 25, 2003 12:35 pm

FinLoveBret wrote:. So what about the sauna do you guys use um and go in there with the wifes family at the summer cottages or whats up with that?
Jussus ..one could write a book about Sauna culture.
Lets start with basics.
Sauna does not equal sex.
Again what I say is the genral rule there will be exceptions.
Families, husband, wife and small kids, often sauna together.
But as kids get older they tend to have two seperate saunas ..mum and the girls go first, dad and the boys second. But there is no real attempt to hide nakedness in the shower changing room, perhaps a stratigcaly drapped towel.
Same applies at summer cottages. But running and jumping nacked into the lake with everyone is accepted and would not be uncommon.


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Phil
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Re: ok tell me this

Post by Phil » Thu Sep 25, 2003 12:37 pm

FinLoveBret wrote:So is most of what you have said from personal experience or from hearing it from others is my scenario similar to alot youve heard of went through yourselves? I mean obviously youve made it over there and life didnt come to a dead hult and you eventually found a job right. And by the way yes she is blond blue eyed bombshell the sexiest little thing ive ever seen. She makes it all worth it.
I STRONGLY suggest you read, "Culture Shock: Finland!" - you'll find it from amazon.com or your local book store. I think it's essential reading before you move here. ALso, learn some Finnish history, it will give you insight on why Finns the way they are.

http://www...com/bb/viewtopic.php?t=611

How long you been dating this girl? Sounds like you just met her. :wink:


FinLoveBret
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Location: Madison , Wisconsin, USA

dating

Post by FinLoveBret » Thu Sep 25, 2003 12:43 pm

Well we have been dating for about five months now but i dont know ive had other long relationships going for years and though iam young when i now have started to worry about my futer and really thinka bout starting a family all becouse of one woman i know its somthing special. Im not a Bush lover im more of a non political you know like the other 55% of the pop in america. I do know some of the culter and history i cant say i know alot but i know some. and i do love salmiaki in all forms from panthers to a shot of grandmas slipper.
Yeah my spelling and grammer stinx but what can i say atleast i admit to it. Bret


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Hank W.
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Post by Hank W. » Thu Sep 25, 2003 12:59 pm

Ok, well, one thing Phil always biatches about but forgot to mention is the "warped image" Europeans and Finns in general have about the USA.
Ok, hollywood movies, !"#¤% tv series, news coverage... also forgot to mention the pink-haired old ladies coming off the cruiseships in the summer. :mrgreen: Finns have a pretty "set" view of what Americans are like -- and Phil I guess just got the best parts of it there :mrgreen:


PS. Go read http://www.helsinki-hs.net/ -pretty decent newspaper, Finnish news. Gets you 'on line' with stuff going on here.
Cheers, Hank W.
sitting here like a lemon looking for a gin.


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deojuvame
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Post by deojuvame » Thu Sep 25, 2003 12:59 pm

Well if she's still studying, and you're 21, perhaps the best thing for you to do is to apply for university and study over here. The costs could potentially be cushioned a lot (other people might have more info than me), and you would have more to do during the day than sit around.


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Hank W.
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Post by Hank W. » Thu Sep 25, 2003 1:15 pm

And one thing; you're 21, what do you have to loose? Even if you don't get a permanent move out of it, you can make a learning experience, as in 'cultural' learning experience. How many guys in your hometown you know that have just stayed there all their lives and will as their fathers and grandfathers? You're young, travel, Europe!! And besides, getting a bachelor's degree in a Finnish Polytechnic is not a "mail-order degree" even though it doesnt'c cost billions as in the US. (Valid all over the EU, in case you change turf sometime.) Imagine now if you joined the army, you'd be shagging camels in the desert - instead you get hot blondes and end up shagging reindeer... urk. Northern Exposure... So my advise is that now when you are young do it - believe me, you have enough time being old and miserable when you're 33.
Cheers, Hank W.
sitting here like a lemon looking for a gin.


FinLoveBret
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Location: Madison , Wisconsin, USA

thanx

Post by FinLoveBret » Thu Sep 25, 2003 1:23 pm

I definatly am going to try and work this thing out. I mean iam definatly going to be a tourist atleast in feb for alittle over two months then ill see if i can get into a school which i dont think will be a problem since at the polytechnic they are mostly doing classes in english now and they really are pushing for foriegn students. And that whole free school thing is very apealing to me 8) . More advise on the language would be very nice since both of her parents understand but dont really speak much english if any especially her father im told. So that is going to be tough how do you ask a sixty three year old finnish man to marry his daughter i dont think he will like the idea once he sees it happening. I guess he will have to learn to love me .
Yeah my spelling and grammer stinx but what can i say atleast i admit to it. Bret


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Hank W.
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Post by Hank W. » Thu Sep 25, 2003 1:32 pm

You ask the girl to marry you, not the father.
Cheers, Hank W.
sitting here like a lemon looking for a gin.


FinLoveBret
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Location: Madison , Wisconsin, USA

well in you op

Post by FinLoveBret » Thu Sep 25, 2003 1:35 pm

I guess i was raised in the fashion of you should ask and then if they say no well then screw um.
Yeah my spelling and grammer stinx but what can i say atleast i admit to it. Bret


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Phil
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Re: well in you op

Post by Phil » Thu Sep 25, 2003 1:40 pm

FinLoveBret wrote:I guess i was raised in the fashion of you should ask and then if they say no well then screw um.
No need to ask them first, the fathers are more than happy to boot the women out of the house.

Finnish women leave her parents house earlier than any other country in the EU.


t.madison
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Post by t.madison » Thu Sep 25, 2003 3:55 pm

Enjoyed reading these posts - especially being from Madison.

There is only one safe way to get here without hassle and fuss - especially at your age. Go over to UW and sign up for classes and transfer to Finland. You can live here on a student visa and even work part time (limited). Once you are here, you can make all the adjustements you want.

If you are thinking Roveneimi, better bring the same clothing you would wear driving up Highway 51 to Wausau in February. It's getting to be that time of year here. Besides, doing all the research over at UW for the classes, transfer, etc. will take you time.

By the way, there should be some Finns at UW (try the hockey team) to give you info, too. Also check out the Finnish-American Society in Madison (look in the phonebook, can't remember the contact). They have info and visit here occasionaly.

I would have you say hi to some old friends for me, except they are probably still ticked off and surprised I would walk out on the old US of A.


Caroline
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Post by Caroline » Thu Sep 25, 2003 5:20 pm

Whoa! Slow down there FinLoveBret.....good things are worth waiting for!


The logistics of getting legal permission to live in Finland permanently are very different from the cultural survival aspect of it- each issue has to be considered separately. The Finnish government doesn't consider "gray areas"- they base their decisions on a series of firm rules. Take it from someone who's been through it all. I'm American too, by the way.


The advice people have been giving about permits pretty well covers the issue- it all boils down to the fact that you'll have to figure out what basis you will use to apply for the permit....and arranging everything always takes time; you'll most likely get told different things by different authorities.


It is recommended, and usually the only way to do it, that you apply for the permits while you are in the States- if you try to do it in Finland, the process takes a lot longer, they keep your passport the whole time (so if you leave the country it cancels the application), and you can't work without the permits.


By applying for your permits in the USA, you do get your passport back while waiting for the decision (the Finnish consulate cannot keep the U.S. passport as it isn't Finnish gov't property). Then, when you get the decision, you send your passport back to the consulate, and they put the visa sticker in there.



But how well aware are you of northern Finnish attitudes and ways of life after knowing your significant other for half a year? Northern Finland is different from southern Finland in a number of ways (we live in Oulu, part of the south-central Ostrobothnian region), and the culture and mindsets go far beyond sauna, enjoying nature, eating sausage, and drinking. It is much harder, outside of the university environment, for foreigners to live in northern Finland, and you'll need to be intrepid in order to find your niche and build an identity there.


Northern Finns tend to be somewhat more conservative and less adventurous than southern natives- what would you do if you married her just so that you could live here permanently, then got bored or disenchanted with Rovaniemi, and you wanted to leave the area but she did not.....believe me such issues will come up eventually.


Also, the further north you go in Finland, the less locals tend to be open to communication with foreigners unless they speak Finnish...and even when they do speak Finnish they still tend to communicate less.


Other issues which will likely come up: gender roles- even though most northern Finnish women are well-educated, many still prefer to be housewives or stay-at-home mothers......quite a number of the Lappish folks I've met (my in-laws are from southern Lapland) expect women to be somewhat passive and traditional, rather than headstrong and worldly. Religion....family acceptance......the job market...the list goes on and on. Now, of course I am not saying that all northern Finns are like that...it's just the overall character that I've noticed.


To be honest, at the moment it sounds like the relationship is based almost entirely on sex appeal....what will you do when that wears off? What if you are unable to find a job in Rovaniemi? (There's a reason why so many northerners are moving south). What will you do when you start to feel homesick but cannot afford to visit your family? I also think that being young is both an advantage and a barrier in these cases: when you are young you're better able to more fully adjust to a new culture, but at the same time you haven't likely achieved the self-awareness necessary to make a marriage work. At the very least, read up on the dynamics of intercultural marriage first- on the Pub forum here, I recommended Dugan Romano's book Intercultural Marriage: Promises and Pitfalls. It would probably be ideal if you could get a permit to study here, so that you could get a sense of the area and develop the relationship a little before you decide to make a commitment.


So...in the end...you will do what you want, but you should first understand that reaching your goals isn't possible without a lot of struggle, tough decisions, and self-discovery. I think all or most of us here would agree that personal growth and learning can be really painful when you move to a different country.
Former expat in Finland, now living in New Hampshire USA.

Remembah whea ya pahked ya cah!


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