Ride bicycle to school in blizzard in Finland


Vol 25, Issue 21, 31 March 2023

Lying approximately between latitudes 60° and 700 North, and longitudes 20° and 320East, Finland is one of the world’s northernmost countries. Finland has a climate that has many interesting points for people from tropical countries. International students and immigrants from Asian or Middle Eastern countries have had many pleasant surprises as well as bad experiences with Finland’s special climate.  Finland has a winter that lasts from about November to May 5. Spring in Finland is similar to winter because the snow is still white covered during this time. My first winter in Finland has many unforgettable memories. That is riding bicycle to school in blizzard.

The temperature can vary between 0 degrees and -30 degrees depending on the time and city. The weather can change erratically during this period. I had a fond memory of experiencing winter in Finland for the first time. It happened in early March 2023. This was the late spring period and preparing for summer. The snow has begun to melt. I was confident that I could go to school by bike. But overnight, the blizzard covered the road surface with thick snow.

Cycling to school in a blizzard becomes difficult. I had trouble navigating who had only lived in Kouvola for six months. The white snow made it impossible for me to distinguish directions, especially when driving through the woods. The thick layer of snow caused the wheels of the bike to be reversed continuously, causing me to fall off the bike several times. The strong wind made the snow hit my face causing discomfort. The temperature outside was very cold, but inside the thermal jacket, I was sweating a lot. My blood sugar dropped suddenly.

After this bad memory, I always carry candy or chocolate with me when I go out. I won’t ride my bike when I hear about the blizzard. An experience that allowed me to continue to adapt to life in Finland. The country has eight months of winter. The happiest country of 2023.

Phuong Pham
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