Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Finding my Titanic

Life happens when you are busy looking for your ship. I land in Helsinki, and make a dash for the ferry terminal. I take a cab at some point, and meet the first Finnish guy. People often complain about cab drivers striking up conversations, but it is the other way around for me. I am infamous for chatting up with cab drivers (a trait I have inherited from my father), and why not? It is weird to sit inside a confined space with someone and pretend that they do not exist. Also, I take cabs usually when I am in new, unknown cities, and it is nice to get the perspective of a local person. 

So this nice guy takes me to my terminal, and even takes my suitcase up the stairs, which he needn't have. I go up to the counter to be told that the ferry has been cancelled due to bad weather (although the weather looked perfectly fine to me). The lady gives me the name of a few other companies, but none of those terminals are walking distance. I am thinking about the money I just spent on a seemingly wasted cab ride (Finland is very expensive by the way, and the meter starts from €9.20 and rises very quickly) when I see that my cab man has walked up the ticket counter. He was driving away when he heard that the ferry got cancelled, and came back to fetch me.

The guy puts my suitcase back (I stress on the suitcase again because it is a heavy one), and zooms to the new ferry terminal. He tells me that he will not charge me the base fare this time, but just charge me for the distance traveled. So my money problem is also resolved. No bargaining, no asking for tips (although I did give him one), no asking about nationality and all that. I do a mental happy dance. He drops me off and wishes me luck. I run to the ticket counter and luckily get a ticket for a 6:30 pm ferry (my earlier one was for 8 pm). Only this time, this is not a ferry. Holy cow, I just walk into the belly of a huge cruise ship that reminds me of the Titanic, one of the hugest I have seen (Type "Baltic Queen" and go to Google Images). I find myself a sunny spot by the deck, some free internet, and I am all set. I kick off my shoes, and finally put my feet up. 

I came back in my original ferry the next day, and that is when I felt the difference. No sunny deck, no free internet, much smaller, and we were crammed inside it like cattle. However, yesterday, they charged me €6.20 less for a journey that took an hour longer. The ship was so huge that we had trouble finding the exit. I saw an amazing sunset, an even better full moon, and after looking at luxury cruise ships from my home for a year, I finally got to take one, totally out of the blue.

By the way, a taxi is a taksi in Finland, and a takso in Estonia. Still looking for the country some people in my greater family visited. Because they call it teski. 


1 comment:

Dew said...

I googled for "Baltic Queen" and it looks amazing !