Have you seen the swan?

A view of Töölönlahti. The opera house is on the other side of the bay. There's a tern flying.
Töölönlahti is surprisingly good bird spot in central Helsinki

How have you spent the copious free time given to you by the COVID-19 isolation? I have been watching the urban nature.

Usually in May, I’m spending the weekends at the summer cottage and in Nuuksio and in the nature in general. This year travelling and even using public transport has been discouraged, so I’ve taken walks in the nearby parks.

It’s funny, but I’ve probably paid more attention to the flora and the fauna than ever before. When you visit the same places again and again, you have more time to look at them and you start noticing the changes. It’s spring, so flowers pop up, trees get leafs, and new birds start showing up.

One of my favorite sights right now is the brooding mute swan in Töölönlahti. It’s been there for a couple of weeks - hopefully soon we get to see some cygnets.

You also start to notice the gaps in your knowledge. I have no idea of the names of the flowers and there are so many birdsongs that I should recognize but I do not. I’ve been slowly looking them up. Eventually I’ll learn.


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