Thursday proved to be quite an interesting journey as I was travelling with the member of the project coming from Tornio, Aaron Celeste. It was Aaron´s first time ever to drive to Rovaniemi so naturally there was a small complication in finding a place for him to stop the car and me to hop in but we were efficient enough to stay on schedule any way.
On the way to Ranua I received a phone call from the director of both of the senior citizen units we were going to visit that day, telling me to come an hour later and switch the times of the places. Then I had soon later a phone call asking for a new time which must have put me through the loop as in the end we were a bit late to the second visit.
The first visit between one and two in the afternoon was close to a coast as the name of the unit ´Rantakoti` or `Beachhome´ suggested. Performance went on quite awkwardly as it was Aaron´s first senior citizen unit visit during this project and he was not completely aware of the proceedings of performances, neither of the songs we were singing. But all in all the performance went well.
One of the seniors who introduced herself as an ex crafts teacher grew extremely interested about Aaron and chatted about her travels both in English and Finnish. She even showed her room and the woven creation on her wall; trying her best to explain in both languages how she had used loom to make the cloudberry pattern. We continued chatting when we got back to the living room area and out of the blue Aaron decided to play piano for a little bit. The lady along with other seniors really enjoyed this surprise performance.
Quite embarrassingly we arrived to Marjaniemi later than promised due to my mistake. However I was still able to sing Olen suomalainen and Täällä Pohjantähden alla and Aaron sang a country song of his own in all of the three small sub units we were guided to by nurses. Seniors appreciated the songs by humming along to the Finnish songs that they knew very well and nodded their head approvingly along the melody of the song Aaron was singing from the top of his head. After singing in all the small sub units we were treated coffee and head off towards Rovaniemi.
Author: Laura Ukkola
Photos: Aaron Celeste