Well, what first came to mind… memories that is... we were at the summer cottage… and there were times that Father was on holidays, and Mother was, for example, still working, so he, during the summer holidays, went to the local shop where they had the warm, hot, leavened bread, and Finnish lenkkimakkara [Finnish sausage] because Father did not want to start cooking any dishes, preparing food, and so forth. This stuck in my mind, this hot leavened bread and butter melting on it and then the lenkkimakkara, so these are memories from my childhood. We might have been, me and my brother, around ten years of age. Young lads.
Well, when we were in the countryside, we did not get to go anywhere. Mother and Father got to go, taking two of the youngest ones along. We had to stay; had to care for the yearlings. That was my job, to feed them. Fortunately, I did not have to milk, since I thought, “I could not do it.” It was an agitating job. So I fed the animals. And then we joined a gymnastics group and that was the only time I managed to go somewhere, when we went to do gymnastics in Lappeenranta. And another time, we went to Helsinki. With a hula hoop… look, we spun them - had to. Those are the only times I got to go anywhere in Finland. We just stayed in the countryside.
Well, at least I am proud to be a Finn, and wherever I am, I let the people know it, that I am Finnish. Because… even though we live here, on foreign soil… I think it is wonderful, that you have something else… customs other than just Australian or from Australia. So I can have another tradition. So I come from some other country and I think Finland is a fine country. So I can say that I am a Finn.
Finland is the country of birth. I was born there, but I can´t [think of anything] more to say about being Finnish… Being a Finn means to me… at least good holiday destinations, fishing places and… good summer cottage life, and really… I have NEVER been ashamed to say I was born in Finland and I am a Finn. Although I have lived all my life with Australians, in the workforce and so forth… I can totally, openly, say that I am Finnish. And we have kept up with it, because our home language is Finnish and we have participated in all the Finnish activities, from the time we arrived in this country. Maybe mainly because our parents did it, but also we ourselves have continued what our parents started. And taken it forward. I am totally proud and I can say, “We are Finns."
Suomi on synnyinmaa. Siellon syntyny, mutta en mä nyt osaa sen enemmän sanoa suomalaisuudesta siis... Suomalaisuus mulle merkitsee... ainaki hyviä lomapaikkoja, kalastuspaikkoja ja... hyvää mökkielämää kesäaikana ja todella siis... enkä mä ole ikinä hävenny todella sanoo, että mä olen Suomessa syntyny ja olen suomalainen. Vaikka mä olen koko elämäni ollut tämänmaalaisten kanssa työelämässä sun muuta ja että siis... kyllä mää pystyn täysin vapaasti sanoon, että mä olen suomalainen. Ja ollaan pidetty suomalaisuutta yllä, koska todella kotikieli on suomi täällä ja ollaan kaikissa suomalaisissa riennoissa mukana oltu, ihan siis siittä asti, kun ollaan tähän maahan tultu. Ehkä paljo sen takia, koska vanhemmat oli mukana, mutta myös itte on jatkettu sitä mitä vanhemmat tavallaan alotti. Ja viety eteenpäin. Kyllä mä oon täysin ylpee ja pystyn sanoon, että ollaan suomalaisia.