My mom is a very important person to me. We are alike in many things, and not in the bad sense. Even though I live far a way from her and my other relatives, they are an important part of my life, and always will be, wherever I am.
Mummi is how we call our granny in Finnish. Mummi is 92 years old and still lives alone, knits socks, crochets curtains and cooks and bakes for everyone. And she so witty – she can probably invent something clever to say to someone more quickly than I do (I blame my birth place – in my region people are known to be slow, and where she comes from people are known to be very quick, witty and funny).
México (pronounce it as in Spanish!) is so many things to me. It’s my second home country, no doubt about it, and my actual home. México means the possibility to be with the man I love and do what I want right now: my research. I don’t know if I will stay here for the rest of my life – but I know that I’m very happy with my life here now. I have learnt to love the country, its rich culture, its nature, its smells and colourss and all its variety, and the people too, generally so friendly and nice. I have learnt lots of things and the country has changed me (I think for the good more than for the bad). Of course there are lots of problems too. The poverty, the corruption, the violence, the insecurity, the racism and other kinds of discrimination… Sometimes reading the newspapers seems more like reading a novel of Kafka rather than reading the news. There are many things I can’t understand and many things I wish were different and will hopefully change some day. I could rant about the Mexican politics for a loooong time (which I’m not supposed to do in public, though, thanks to the Constitution that states that foreigners can’t take part in politics).
I love astronomy and cosmology. The space has interested me since I was a little girl. If I was a little better in maths, I might be studying astronomy. Not that I couldn’t study it now – I could, and would probably be OK in it. But as astronomy is a passion, I don’t want to be just OK or good in it. I would have to be excellent. So I never even tried to study it, and prefer to have this interest as a hobby. I’m still always looking at the sky, and could spend hours watching the stars, moon and planets and Milky Way. By the way, I think the Finnish word for Milky Way, Linnunrata (Birds’ way or route) is much more beautiful than the English version.
My doctoral research is about social memory. My thesis is about how past human rights abuses are remembered and treated in Chile and in Mexico. I still love my theme after working with it in my Master's thesis too, so I guess it was a good choice. Sometimes it can be really hard to read about all those awful human rights violations (even when committed in the past), but it helps to remember how important the theme is.
The nature has always been very important to me. I need to get in the forest every once in a while. I think that's one of the toughest things for me in living in one of the biggest cities in the world - I can't get to wander in the nature as much as I would love to. Luckily there are some forests even in the city, and besides Mexico City is greener than you would think. (The picture is from Finland.)
I love the soft light in the summer mornings in Finland, right after the sunrise (Not that I see it a lot, but anyway). The light in general is very important to me and I can get a bit blue or depressed if there’s not enough light in my home. I always have the curtains open during the day to be able to have daylight in the room and to watch the sky. I love to observe the different tones of light at different times of the day and in different places. I can still remember the light in Chilean Patagonia. It was as if the sky was closer to the Earth there, as if you could touch the sky if you reached a bit more, as if the light was raining down…
I love travelling. My parents always took us children with them to their trips to Europe, and I guess my travel bug is from them… Travelling and getting to know new places is fun. And you don’t even have to travel very far; sometimes a travel in your own city can be an adventure. I also like travelling in the bus or in the train. Watching the scenery that passes by can sometimes be even better than getting to the destiny. I like flying too, even though it’s not at all ecological. But at the moment it would be impossible to travel to months in a ship just to see my family once in a while.