Why is it hard to live anywhere else after living in Helsinki? Moving to a new city or a new country provides an exhilarating thrill. If done for the right reasons, this type of move can be a joyful and energetic experience. However, it could also be a very challenging time.
Becoming an expatriate or seeking refuge in a city is a daunting endeavor, but once you achieve it, going back can be even more intimidating.
After having lived in the city of Helsinki, I now know that trying to live anywhere else will probably be the biggest challenge of my life.
Call it a Reverse Cultural Shock
In the years that I lived in Helsinki, I learned that although it is difficult to arrive at a new city and get used to a new culture and different customs; it is even harder to leave it all behind.
Helsinki has a way of becoming a part of you, which makes it extremely difficult to get used to living anywhere else.
When I first arrived in Helsinki, Finland, I had to overcome a series of barriers to be able to settle in and make a new home.
Integrating into Finnish society
I had to deal with a long and tedious integration process i.e. finding a job, making new friends, getting used to a new climate, new customs, and learning the Finnish language — which many believe to be a notoriously difficult language.
But much faster than I could have ever predicted, I acclimatized to the Finnish culture, the Finnish weather, and the city’s magical splendor in the blink of an eye.
Now the city has made me one of its own – and I am giving back with the “Black Finn blog and illustration“.
At the time of writing this article, I live in Toronto, Canada. Before Toronto, I have lived in London and Zurich.
Why is it hard to live anywhere else after living in Helsinki?
With my experience traveling and living in various parts of the world. I must admit that it is hard to live anywhere else than Helsinki Finland. Here are just a few reasons why:
Quiet and peaceful
The people of Helsinki, contrary to popular belief, are open and generous. Though most Finns are quiet and may seem like introverts, yet they are unafraid to share their interests, desires, and fears freely.
Based on my experiences, I would prefer to live in a city where people avoid small talks, eye contact and mind their business than living in a city where people are rude, quick to curse and poke their noses into other people’s affairs.
Summer days are bright, breezy, and alive, and the city bustles with festivals and celebrations. Autumn explodes with color and the forests that surround the city paint the surrounding vistas with golden hues.
Winters are picturesque, cold, full of snow, and just perfect for a myriad of winter activities. Spring is very short, and before you know it, summer rolls around again. Even though summer in Helsinki is very short, still it is the best place to be in summer.
The city is packed with public parks, which in reality, are just pristine forests with trails. The city is so entwined with nature that after living there, I could not see myself in a concrete jungle ever again.
Helsinki has some of the best public service infrastructures I have ever experienced in my entire life. The fantastic convenient public transportation system, a world-class education system, the best and most polite police force in the world.
Helsinki is the most safest city compared to other cities I have lived in. After living here, I forget what it feels like to look over your shoulder. You can be about town at any hour of the night and be completely safe (with the help of God, of course).
Houses in Helsinki are built with sophisticated facilities and can feel like luxury hotel suites. Most houses have a sauna either inside the apartment unit or building. Accommodation is affordable, hydro is cheap and water is free.
Funny as this may sound, one of the things that contribute to why i love the city of Helsinki is the bidet shower — a hand-held triggered nozzle that you find in most homes in Helsinki that is often used to clean the anal or genital regions.
Once you arrive Helsinki, the first thing you can’t help but notice is how clean the streets and roads are. The city of Helsinki is doing a great job of ensuring that the city is kept clean at all times.
I could keep on giving you many reasons why is it hard to live anywhere else after living in Helsinki. And don’t get me wrong; there are a lot of great cities around the globe too. But not one comes close to offering everything that Helsinki does —there are some things you can trade-off in life, which is why am extolling the beauty of the city.
Maybe I am just a big fan of Helsinki. Whatever the case may be, I love this city and am not ashamed to call it “my home“.