September 10, 2012 - Hong Kong Island, China

Yesterday we had an extraordinary experience!!!  Being Sunday we decided to attend one of the many churches around Helsinki.  We chose Temppeliaukio Church, which is a city church completely quarried into bedrock!  It is situated in a square and the basic idea was to preserve the rock formation of the square so the essential construction has been built into the rock as much as possible.  We got there at 10. am just as the service was starting.  We stepped into one of the most spiritual and beautiful spaces I have ever encountered.  The church is round and the walls are all quarried granite of the most beautiful colors.  Even the dynamite marks have been left to show how it was constructed.  You feel like you are in a huge cave!

The roof is a massive suspended copper disc, which doesn't reach the circumference of the walls but is joined to the rocks by reinforced slim concrete beams which radiate out from the disc.  From the inside, I felt like I was really "grounded" in earthly beauty with a huge sun shining down on me and rays of the sun reaching down.  The atmosphere was completely tranquil.  The service was in Finnish but it didn't matter ne bit - there was such beautiful music, such simple theatricality and your eye just kept wandering around appreciating every tiny detail.  Even the organ pipes were set into the rock!  Words don't really do it justice but I offered up a silent prayer of thanks that I had the opportunity to have that experience.

More sightseeing in the afternoon - on what was a perfect day.  Went 15 minutes by ferry to an island, originally a Swedish fortress, then a Russian fortress and finally a Finnish fortress after independence.  Now it is a civilian residential and artistic community.

Today all museums were closed so hit the shops........oh my goodness, such beautiful things!  Summer berries still abound in the markets and we are gorging ourselves on raspberries - so sweet!

Went to Apple Mac store - to try and find out how to get pictures from my IPad to the blog - no help at all!!!

Wendy and John send love - and thanks for your commentsl - it is exciting to open up and read them.

Off to Estonia on Wednesday - really excited about that.   We will be there 2 days - tell you about it when we return!

Love from us all



September 10, 2012
The church sounds so beautiful - I would love to visit it one day. Were you able to take photos? What an amazing experience.

Enjoy the Brigitta Convent and Tallinn!

Lalage Craig:
September 10, 2012
It is a beautiful church. I remember it well from my visit. I am so glad you are all enjoying it so much. The berries are so delicious. We gorged on Blueberries!
Love to all,
Anne kersch:
September 10, 2012
Wow, Ro! This church really must give the feeling of a sacred space, with amazing acoustics and light effects. I have been following your travels on Google Images which is tempting me more and more to visit Dom in Scandinavia.
Loving your descriptions! Are you enjoying the fish and pastries too??
Enjoy Estonia.
September 10, 2012
That sounds amazing Mum! I can't wait to hear about Estonia too. By the way, sent you an email re getting photos onto fuzzytravel. Also have meeting today at 3.30 so won't be near my computer for a call unless you are staying in for a while will be home around 5.30 -6 so 10.30-11am your time. Fiona and I skyped on Sunday night and it was so fun actually seeing sash
September 11, 2012
Roe, you write so descriptively I could almost see and hear it! Glad you had such a sacred experience - makes the trip even more special. You are certainly keeping busy and not just hanging around!
Wish I could help you with getting pictures from ipad to blog. Just keep clicking on everything! I amsure you will work it out. Look for things that say insert, attach, download...????
love Tracey
Anne Rouse:
September 11, 2012
Wow Roe what a wonderful mix of experiences you are having already.That church just sounds so beautiful !
Gorgeous to be feasting on raspberries my favourite food ,do keep taking lots of photographs.
Lots of Love Anne xx
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