"This blog is not necessarily for lovers of art, it includes a variety of topics and whatever. I'm a painter who likes to know what's really going on in the world today. So you might find anything from Shamrocks to Salmiakki mentioned here on my blog. There will of course be some boring, factual and informational posts, but I'll keep them to a minimum, I promise!

And I might get a bit nostalgic now and then.

So you have been warned!"

- Alan Hogan

Showing posts with label pests. Show all posts
Showing posts with label pests. Show all posts

Monday, June 12, 2017

Eyes Wide Open

Visiting Finland during the summer months offers the chance to experience long evenings and for a certain period the midnight sun. In most parts of Finland it doesn't get very dark at all. Where I live along the south-west coast the darkness is set at twilight, so it can be bright enough to play a game of football.

Having spent almost ten years now living in Finland I am still amazed every June as the Midsummer period arrives with it's seemingly endless hours of light. It's an eerie sensation which can create wonder and plenty of sleepless nights. Black-out blinds are an essential purchase if you want to sleep!

While I still haven't been to the northern part of Finland yet, I can almost imagine what it must be like to have the sun up all day. It's something I would still like to experience sometime. One reason I haven't been so far north in the summer may be the presence of Finland's not-so loveable mosquitos. While we do get quite a lot of these bloodsuckers here in the south of Finland, I have heard stories of mild discomfort caused by the amount they have up north. This may be over-exaggerated, but during my first few years of living in southern Finland my legs were constantly under attack. After several days of itching and scratching they resembled a pair of crusty old pizzas! I think I offered the mosquitos a new dining experience of Irish blood which they took to like a vintage wine!

Nowadays my blood may have altered a bit or become less tasteful as they don't bother me too much anymore. Perhaps my tolerence for them has levelled out,  I honestly don't know!

Anyway I thought I'd reactivate my blog here today having read about a short-film been shown at a Finnish film festival this week. It's certainly an apt film to show as it's relevent to the festival's location and this time of year. It's called 'How a Mosquito Operates', a silent animated film made way back in 1912 by American cartoonist and animator Winsor McCay. It's just one of many films been shown, full list here

This Wednesday June 14th 2017, the Midnight Sun Film Festival begins it's five-day event in Sodankyl√§, Finland. It's an unusual film festival as it shows films around the clock without any breaks, just as the sun shines around the clock! 
The festival began in 1986 in the village of Sodenkylä, located in Finnish Lapland, some 120 kilometres above the Arctic Circle where the sun doesn't set at all in the summertime. So if you suffer from insomnia, this is the place for you!!

..and don't worry about the mossies!

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- Alan


Friday, June 3, 2011

'FIRST BLOOD' - No man, no law, no war can stop him!

Finnish Mosquitos take no prisoners!

It's summertime again here in Finland, whoa hoo!!! 
Warm sunshine, colourful gardens, the smell of barbeques, cold beers ......and yes, I almost forgot, the baby mosquitos have hatched......Yes, it's time to go to mosquito war again!!

Well, as long as you're indoors in the evening it's actually not too bad here. Earlier this week I had my first uninvited guests to sample my blood. I'm kind of use to it by now, but there are still certain places I try to prevent the little buggers from biting. They have their favorite places, like the back of the legs, the ankles and much to my annoyance, the back of my hands! I know that I shouldn't moan about such little things and that people have bigger problems, but this is one creature I don't feel guilty about killing. In fact I get a lot of pleasure when I do manage to kill one. Unfortunately however, I face a losing battle every year as I am constantly out-numbered. 

I'd like to have an endless supply of mosquito repellant, but it's quite expensive here. I sometimes wish there were more repellant products to choose from, forcing a bit of brand competition. Perhaps that could lower the prices. If anyone knows of something that can be easily be made on the cheap at home please leave a comment. I've tried a few things already, but the mosquitos just keep on biting!

One new item I recently discovered in the shops that may help keep mosquitos and other nasty biters away is the 'Bug Zapper'. It looks like a miniture tennis racket with electrified wires as threads. This battery-powered device is new to me, but it may have been out for a while. If anyone has used it let me know your opinion. I bought mine at Clas Ohlsen in Helsinki, but I noticed that they're available in other countries such as Sweden and the UK. I shall be testing it myself after my next barbeque, so watch this space!

Bug Zapper

There is one flying insect I hate even more than any mosquito or wasp and it's a creature I have only ever encountered here in Finland. I don't know the english or finnish name for it, only the swedish. It may be a type of horse-fly, but I need to do a little more research. All I can say is that it looks half-fly, half-moth. This 'fly' cannot be heard as it comes to bite you, and when I say bite, I mean 'bite'. I've heard that they actually remove a small piece of flesh in the process. And the bites can vary as this fly comes in different sizes. I have seen small ones resembling normal flies, and I have also seen big ones, some as big as golfballs! I will have to keep awake and alert if I am to get one of these beauties with my new Bug Zapper. Yep, this fly is one lean mean stealth munchin' machine! 

This is my second blogpost on the pests I love to hate. You can read my first one by clicking here.   

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