Cottage Comfort

The Land of Many Lakes.
Photo courtesy of Rick Mouw.

It turns out the sauna isn’t the only way of wisdom that we can learn from the Finns, those Nordic geniuses at the top of the world. They have yet another cultural identity that is geared towards disconnecting from the everyday for some intentional relaxation. We’re talking here about the mökki, or rural cottage.

When reading about Finnish summer cottages, a couple main ideas stick out:

Escape

Retreat

Nature

Family

Lakes

Fire up the heater, ladle some water onto the stones, sit back, and breath deeply.
Photo courtesy of Rick Mouw

Forests

Quietness

It starts to paint a picture of a very special place, a place that acts as the gathering point for an inner circle of loved ones, where one can be still and be surrounded by natural wonder. Sounds nice.

Here in the U.S., we have quite the reputation for hurry, bustle, and busyness. For many of us, take us away from our work stations and plop us in the woods at a lakeside cabin and we might not know what to do with ourselves, apart from trying to find a reliable WiFi connection. For a Finn, their first task when arriving at their rural summer cottage might be to get the fire going in the sauna. See the difference? And see how much we might learn from a people who know how to disconnect and get away?

 

Sources:

http://news.nationalpost.com/life/travel/chasing-quiet-charm-of-a-finnish-summer-finland-is-a-place-where-simplicity-and-silence-are-celebrated

https://finland.fi/life-society/the-art-of-finnish-cottage-life/

http://www.visitfinland.com/article/the-essentials-of-cottage-life/

http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2009/04/saunas-and-silence/307322/

January 30, 2017 •