What a city! The sea, the sun, the municipal gardening. And much of the architecture is amazing. Even more of it is so harmonious and comfortable you don’t really notice it even. You just have a sense that all is right with the world. (If you don’t understand what I mean think about when all is not right with the world: the road is blocked, the windows are broken, the buildings so hideous you block them out or actively hate them, and so on.)
I do not, unlike some people, think the Senate Square (above) should be turned over to cafe and terrace bar use. I don’t think it’s a particularly suitable place unless you plop some more buildings on the site or transform the University, the Church or the Prime Minister’s Office into drinkeries of the kinds that might afford the rents in this part of the city (i.e. chains, probably multinational ones). The problem with the south side of the square is it’s in the shade.
Fortunately there are plenty of spaces on the Esplanadi side where the sun does shine (when it does) for terrace cafes and bars.
And it has, recently. And, as Finns might say, “The Nature” has awoken. The City’s gardeners are good and busy (we hear that not as many of them have been employed this summer by the Public Works Department as in previous years).
But then Helsinki’s no different from other places. Machines are cheaper, apparently, than people. So there are quite a few redundant people around. So it’s good that the City has still invested in some impressive municipal gardening for people to go and enjoy for free.
Here in Kaivopuisto (or the “cape” of Helsinki as this, rather hyperbolic, property-information site calls it) the municipal gardening is both noticeable and well, of the kind that makes it easy to think all’s well with the world.