Year at an End

(Posted November – December 2011) -Lost my keys. Felt the pain of riding public transportation. not that it’s particularly bad, but nothing like the freedom and speed a bike gives you. A classmate lent me an angle grinder, and in less than half a minute I was back on my bike. Sort of puts in…

Studying nearby

(Originally posted November 2011) Well, decided to go study in the nearby patch of forest. It’s a bit more productive then trying to work at home, school or the library. usually. Having to prepare your materials that you will be working on before hand, and then only being able to work with what you have…

Finland Update

(Originally posted October 2011) I’ll post an update soon enough. here a picture of a squirrel out my window. courses move by fast. and not a clue how you did the months before. Anyway continuing on, I’m going to try to start with Finnish again, and also begin Russian. When asked if it’s because I’m…

Images of the Fall

(Posted October 2011) I was not able to find the original images I took. Instead you get the photos as they were on my previous website. Shrunk to minimize bandwidth usage which is no longer such a big deal as it use to be. Enjoy. Making home made empanadas Vantaa river electricity Home made tres…

Colder

(Posted October 2011) The warm summer days are just about over, as the winter sneaks back in. I did get my hospital bill. not cheap, yet, not quite as expensive as I would have expected for the full unsubsidized cost. As instructed by the hospital, I went to a KELA office (Finnish social security) to…

Billing

(Posted September 2011) An accident. A lady stopped by and drove me straight to the hospital. Attended right away, checked by a doctor, X-rays with such detail as I have never seen before (no blurry photos hanging over florescent tubes?), cleaned up by a nurse, and sent on my way. A sugestion for all foreign…

busy orientation days

(posted September 2011) Ferry/airport/train. The last few days I’ve been running around with some of the new students around, helping them with the essentials and getting them started in Finland. The HOAS (the student housing organization) office , was packed on the 1st, with hundreds of students waiting outside with their luggage and taxis stopping…

Fruit and Food

(Originally posted in August) While watching channel 4 Nelonen, during their transition into ad-space I caught site of a Chilean Indio Picaro sitting next to some toys. It means someone over at Nelonen has a Chilean connection. The transition ads seems to change in relation to the evening, I did not see it again. I’ll…

Clonezilla Live guide

Note: This guide was made in early 2007. Changes may be seen between the version of Clonezilla Live used and the latest version available. This document is a step-by-step guide on how to use Clonezilla Live as a simple cloning solution. Clonezilla is a full free open-source cloning suite. It runs on Linux, and can…

Flour

(Posted August 2011) Today I made a quick batch of flour tortillas, one of the simplest and quickest items you can make. For anyone who doesn’t know, it’s just flour and oil. nothing else. Corn flour is not easy to come by, so these might not authentic as you’d like. Anyway, cheap, quick, easy to…

Food and Deserts

(Posted August 2011) Just to revisit the entire reason and purpose of this blog. To aid me in my job search. This blog came into existence in part due to a frustrating, unending job search that has brought me to Finland. In my mind I feel I am qualified. I mean, if I could handle…

Finnish course over, Dentist appointment, Door locked.

(Originally posted August 2011) I took my final exam today. It wasn’t as difficult as I thought it would be, yet I’ll be surprised to learn what my score turns out to be tomorrow. The Finnish course turned out a bit tiring, but in the end my basic knowledge has greatly improved. If I had…

Taking a Page from my Brother

Being told 1 in 20 students in Helsinki manage to grab a job during their studies is a bit disconcerting. Knowing the current job market in Finland is not much different then the rest of this world, I’ve decided to start experimenting with the sale of Finnish goods over international waters. My brother did something…

Settling in

(Posted July 2011) Anyway, I’ve been here for a couple weeks now settling in, taking care of practical matters, paying bills, etc. I haven’t been overwhelmed nor bored. A nice balance. I couldn’t imagine what it might be like to do all this if I were to arrive right before the beginning of classes. Right…

State Department: FSS

Search “Foreign Specialist blog” and this guy is the first to pop-up.A lot of good insight is provided for anyone who is thinking of joining the Foreign Service. My interview with the State Department was actually my first “real” interview. You know the kind with a suit, a tie, nice shoes and all those fancy…

Around Helsinki for the First Time

(Posted July 2011) I’ve been around for about four days now. It’s been exhausting,but very nice. Just taking care of all practical maters. payed all my accounts, signed my apartment contract, turned in enrollment paperwork, and met with an old friend. I was bit disappointing with the apartment I received from HOAS (the student housing…

Kentucky

Originally posted June 2011 Leaving from Santiago, Chile Staying in Kentucky for a one week lay over. Who knows when will be the next time I’ll be back around these parts? (I would take another visit five years later in 2016)

Back online!

As mentioned, I am posting old posts from an old dead site. This was posted May 2011 After having trouble with Movistar, we decided to see what CTR had to offer us. We called their offices on a Monday, and by Wednesday a sales executive was here in person. She explained the entire process very…

Getting an education

So. The list goes on. Accepted to the Universities of Helsinki, Oulu, Jyvaskyla, Tampere and Vaasa. After visiting each of these Universities during the past winter and even haven spoken to a few programme coordinators, this was not an easy decision. The opportunity to study in Russia via the University of Helsinki’s Cross-Border University programme…

Waiting for the day I become a Tourist

Posted back in May of 2011 “Can I ask you a very personal question… how do you afford to travel?” In the Americas any discussion on personal finances is often considered a quite sensitive matter. Personally I’m of the opinion that wages and benefits should be publicly known, at least among employees in order to…

No service from Movistar

Originally posted May 2011. Spanish version below (Version en Español). Movistar, formerly Telefonica, is one of the largest residential telecommunication companies in Chile. Here in Carahue they have been for some time the only provider of broadband internet to the region. Being a generally rural and impoverished area, it is clear that economically we have…

Finland, Expensive?

Originally posted May 2011. Pricing may be out of date. Finland has introduced tuition fees for foreign students since, as well as tuition in the US rising. Looking online, reading through forums, and hearing stories, Finland sounds like the most expensive country to live in. With people warning that a single year of studies can…

A little closer

As mentioned, I’ve been transferring some old content and posts to my new site. Originally posted way back in may 2011.   It was a good feeling, to already be accepted to all but one of the dozens of Finnish universities I had applied to. I made my choice, and would be looking forward to at…

Return to Chile

Originally posted from March to June 2011 Flying from Santiago to Temuco you get this view of the Andes Mountains. This is the small town of Carahue in Southern Chile, where I would stay while waiting on my Finnish University applications. Panoramic shot I took of Puerto Saavedra. The sea is never far in Chile….

Making low end computer systems work

While looking through old files I found this little post I started writing about a decade ago. I’ve decided to revisit and complete it, if for nothing else than for the sake of documentation. It briefly revisits the technical challenge I had putting together and donating old hardware in rural Chile. The Start Way back…

Unlocking the Nextar GPS W3G-01

Many years ago I had picked up a cheap Nextar GPS. The included software was pretty bad, and in search for a better solution I figured out how to install custom software on the device. This use to be by far the most popular page on my old site. At this point many sites have…

European Job Seeker: Goodbye EU – part VI

Time passed by and my 90 day limit was coming to an end. I would take one last trip to Finland before heading to Chile. What a long flight. London New York and finally… Chile! At least here I don’t need a Visa to work legally, nor can I overstay 😉 . So now what?…

European Job Seeker: Hungary – part V

Finland is expensive. I could no longer afford to stay around. As my situation changed I headed on the next 8€ flight to Hungary. I was not able to land a single interview here, but time was not wasted. I still took time to visit old friends throughout the country. At 2€ a night, I…

European Job Seeker: Finland – part IV

The job interviews I experienced in Finland were some of the nicest I experienced in Europe. Very friendly, easy going and practical. Yet my Finnish language skills leave much to be desired, leaving me short of the competition. At this point I was in the midst of the Finnish winter and had decided to travel…

European Jobseeker: Netherlands – part III

I’m sitting in the Netherlands making the same calls, and oh, what’s this? An interview. With that I relaxed a bit, held off on the e-mails, stopped calling and took it a little easy. Did the interview, felt good about it, and stopped in Utrecht for dinner with an old friend. I did feel that…

European Job Seeker: Ireland

Continued from the previous post. Within a week I was in Dublin. Searching for a job in Ireland during a time of economic hardship. I already knew the near impossible outcome of such pursuit. As they say, if you don’t try you get nothing. That is for sure. I have to say, my friends here…

A Job Seeking Tour Through Europe – part I

As mentioned in the previous post I’d be bringing back old posts from an old website. This starts off my story of how I would ultimately make Finland home. This story starts back in December of 2015. What am I doing here? Well, back in Finland a friend I was staying with suggested I start…

Bringing back the old

I’ve been working on recovering posts from my old website. The upcoming posts will be a look at the past. The first post had been this photo I had taken of a praying mantis.

Cheating at Groceries

So, every couple of weeks I post on here a bi-monthly shopping trip that amounts to two weeks of food for two at 50€ a person. The idea is just to see how this budget progresses through the year. Personally,  I’ve noticed improvement in the quality and nutrition of goods we get every month. But…

Penny Auctions Target Elderly and Disabled

Penny Auctions sites are unfairly targeting the most vulnerable in our society. Penny Auctions, although not classified as gambling, share many similarities. The addictive nature of landing the one chance to “win” an item at all costs leads many to overpay bigtime. There are many penny sites out there (DealDash, BidFun, Madbid, Quibid, beesid, etc.)…

Another round of two for two under a hundred

This time I sloppily separated the image into categories in paint. I had received a couple comments asking where’s the meat? With one vegan there is bound to be less, but without a doubt it’s still there. Fish sticks are probably not best meat around, but for a euro it’s junk food I can live…

Why LinkedIn Profile Photos are Controversial

(Article Posted for LinkedIn) Your LinkedIn Profile You’re likely reading this on LinkedIn.  If so, I would have to guess you have built a profile for yourself. With that profile I am almost sure it is accompanied by a profile photo.  It’s that first impression you use to convey to others who you are. It…

Passport Renewal: A Decade of Travel

It’s been a decade, which means it’s time to renew a couple of passports. The US embassy in Finland seems to be in a bit of a slight time warp. Their mail-in application for passport renewal requires a check. Yes, that’s right, a bank check for payment. A relic of the past, no different than…

Yet again. 2 for 2 under 100

Keeping the posts going, albeit a bit late, here is the latest two weeks for two people under 100€. This time around we managed to fit in a bit of ice cream for dessert, pears, sweet potatoes, mushroom sauce and some spices and sesame paste for adding some flavour to our food.