Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Its a small world stroll

One thing I really enjoy about living where we do is the access to the jogging trail. Peanut & I usually stroll at least twice a week - needless to say, early in the mornings (which is like 8.00 am for us) before the blistering sun rises too far above the treeline.

We're starting to see many of the same people out on our walks. Its a wonderful mix of cultures and languages that crosses our path.

There is the older Indian man who sits on the bench overlooking the duck pond in a pair of shorts and a t-shirt. He is there with his palms resting on his knees early to greet the sun and in the evenings to bid it farewell. He always takes a moment away from his peaceful gazing to wave to Peanut - or gently admonish her parents for having her out in such heat!

There are very slender and quick-paced the Chinese (Taiwanese?) grandparents who are trying to keep their active 2 year old granddaughter in the stoller all the way to the park. "Baby" and Ni-hao are all I understand of grandmother's quick comments. Grandfather speaks some English. The little girl always excitedly waves at Peanut and explains how she is going to play on the monkey bars.

A couple of Korean ladies are often out for a speed-walk wearing their outdoor hats with broad sun-blocking lids. A group of Spanish-speaking women also briskly walk by as they get in their morning exercise. Sometimes an older Indian couple ambles by - this pair is dressed more traditionally with the woman wearing a sari and both sporting chappul-sandals.

Two younger Finnish women are out with their strollers usually just 15 mins ahead or behind us. They walk fast with a sense of purpose and true to the stereotype, never say hello or even make eye contact if we pass.

Of course, we also come across many English-speaking neighbors with dogs, strollers, bikes and smiles as they jog by.

I'm glad for the diversity of our neighborhood and excited for Peanut to get to know people of different backgrounds and cultures as she grows up. The 'melting pot' idea is such a cliche, but certainly compared to Helsinki, there is a wider array of people just in our area who look as if they truly are comfortable here.

1 comment:

Rowan said...

Ahhh ... You can take the Finns out of Finland ... but you can't take Finland out of the Finns. ;)

Ah yes, and Seamus is my sheltie. :)