Eugene Cordell Vail
Helsinki, Finland Temple Dedication Trip
Day 2 - 18 Oct 2006

If you have already been to any of these pages,
be sure to hit REFRESH on each page each time you come again
because if you don't, you will only see what was here before,
and I am adding things daily!


You know there has to be a Mcdonnalds. One missionary was so desperate to have a big Mac that when his
companion went back home he mailed him one... slow boat. It was green when it got there but he almost
ate it anyway... ALMOST... that was so funny to see him suffering holding a Big Mac and could not eat it.
Problem solved. They are everywhere now.No more missionary Big Mac withdrawl symptoms.

This may seem strange but when I was there 43 years ago most homes just had a Sauna in them and not a
bath tub or shower. They just took a Sauna once a week (every Saturday night). Some how it made us so
clean that was all we needed. Or at least no one dared tell us other wise ha ha ha... Now every home
seems to have a shower. Probably not out in the country but in Helsinki any way.

You know how it goes. You see something new in the bathroom (called the WC.. Water Closet there) and
who is going to ask the embarrasing question of what is it for.... They didn't used to have this water hose
by the toilet but every where I went they have them now. Hot and cold too... Even in public restrooms. Probably use them
to sprinkle your clothes so they looked ironed when you come out of the WC... that is my guess ha ha ha...
Well you ask them what it is for... I'm not going to.

In 1963,64, 65 when I was there the stores were pretty much a Bread Store, a Milk Store, A Meat Store etc etc
Just before I left they opened the first mixed store in Helsinki. It was about the same size and make up as
a large 7-11. A little bigger but not much. They actually had most things in one store. We were pretty
excited to go there and see it. I will find that picture and put it on my 1963 pictures so you can see it.
But now... WOW!!!! huge malls and not one milk store or bread store to be found. Even escalators.

One thing that has not changed is Stockmann's. It was a huge department store like Macey's. It looked
pretty much the same except.... in the down stairs they had a grocery store selling all kinds of food.
If you have ever been in ZCMI in Salt Lake you will know what Stockmann's looks like. It has 5 floors.
But of course what they sell now is very different. USA clothing to the max. Levi's and stuff. Could
not find very much olden days Finnish stuff like my sweater I am wearing. Notice in these pictures
that in fact I am the ONLY one wearing a traditional Finnish sweater anywhere on the streets of Helsinki.

Probably the most noticable thing that has changed to me in Finland is how tall kids are
I took this picture to try to show you a picture of a girl who was over 6 feet tall (hard to tell in the picture)
But notice how much taller I am than most of the people in the two pictures above. Finns were not tall. Now they are.
There were lots of Finnish kids that were 6 feet or more. Girls and boys. When I was there
43 years ago I could always find my companion in a group of Finnish pople. We stood head and shoulders
above almost everyone. Not any more. What have they been feeding those kids anyway???

Here is another example. This is Hannu in a store with a young clerk. Hannu is about my same age.
The cleark is a young 18 or 19 year old and was almost 6 feet tall. Hannu is very typical hight for the
Finns when I was there before.

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