Saturday, February 23, 2019

WTF? No sauna???

I was in Kista once again, and this time tried out the new hotel, Comfort Hotel Kista. A new hotel building, and very, very nice. Modern rooms but still with a warm feeling. But WTF, how can one have a new hotel without a sauna???

That being said, if there was a week when I'm denied access to a sauna, this was a good week for that. The doctor had told me to not go to the sauna before stitches have come out from the cut in my hand...

Photos (c) 2019 by Jari Arkko. All rights reserved. And all my sauna articles can of course be found from!

Sunday, February 17, 2019

Major maintenance done!

Learning to do major maintenance on the Volvo myself... now I have new windshield wiper blades, and can see out again #volvo

Photos and text (c) 2019 by Jari Arkko. All rights reserved.

Russian Sauna

What a wonderful sauna. So Finnish... or so Belarussian... or, really, Russian. The Russian sauna culture is similar to Finland's, except only more so. More hot, close to 110 degrees Celsius in my case. More snowplay. More cold water. More funny hats. Maybe also more vodka.

I rented a Russian sauna at the Silichy ski area in Belarus, near Minsk. There was a sauna room, a pool room, and relaxing room. Next to the sauna room there was a woodshed where a local lady was putting more wood into the furnace, without having to visit the sauna room. Huh, pretty hot. The temperature was hovering around 107, although when I opened the door to take a photo, it decreased to 104.

Funny hats:

The pool:

The sauna:

After-sauna drink at the restaurant:

This article has also been published at TGR. And all sauna and swimming articles can of course be found from and! Photos (c) 2019 by Jari Arkko. All rights reserved. All sauna and pool photos are taken with permission, when the facility is closed, or when no other guests are present.


Badeschiff! A great idea to swim in the middle of Berlin, in the river but yet in a clean pool. In a ship, or barge converted to a pool.

Much recommended. Pretty cold water though, even in the summer. There's also a great bar, overall a very nice place to hang out.

Read more from the Wikipedia article or the official website. The place is open year around, and in the winter there are saunas.

Photos (c) 2017 by Jari Arkko. All rights reserved. All pool photos have been taken when the facility is closed, with permission, not of other people, or with permission.

Friday, February 15, 2019

The Milan Cathedral

Janne and I visited the cathedral of Milan, Duomo di Milano. This magnificent piece of art, construction, and religion was a wonder to visit, particularly from the upper floors and roof. The cathedral took a whopping 600 years to complete, and is the fourth largest church building in the world.

But, this was also a badly organized tourist visit. Even though we paid 50€ for "no-line" tickets, we ended up waiting for access up to the cathedral for a long time in the cold winter weather. And when coming down, there was a completely unnecessary line that we waited in for at least half an hour, when our tickets would have allowed us to pass the line, and there were short stairs to use as well for anybody to go down easily. I can understand the wait for the lift to go up, and the popularity of the site. And pay happily extra for a visit to such an important and extraordinary place. But I don't necessarily understand no signs, no information, no staff, and no organization :-)

Note that there are underground "terraces", an architectural dig on the side/under the cathedral that reveals ancient walls and streets. Also worth a visit!

Photos (c) 2019 by Jari Arkko. All rights reserved.

Thursday, February 14, 2019

The Luola Magazine

The "Luola" magazine from the Finnish Caving Association dropped into the mailbox today. Nice! And of course, we got two copies because there's two members in the household...

Photos and text (c) 2019 by Jari Arkko. All rights reserved. And all the caving stories can of course be found from!

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

No sauna for me :-(

No sauna for me for the next ten days. I had a small operation on my hand... and the wound has to heal

Photos and text (c) 2019 by Jari Arkko. And all sauna stories can of course be found from the site!