Monday, 21 May 2012

Jyväskylä: Breakfast Club

The dawn is breaking after an eventful day of culture festival Yläkaupungin Yö which celebrates its 20th anniversary.  Although the name of the festival refers to night time (literally, Uptown Night), the festival is not totally over yet. I descend from the main university campus of Seminaarinmäki, also the main venue of the festival, down to Ruusupuisto park. It is time for breakfast!
The breakfast is served at Alvar Aalto Museum at 5-9 am on this Sunday morning. The rays of the sun do not quite reach the patio but there are already some people having a bite to eat. And it is only some minutes after six. Come on! Haven't you slept at all?
Café Alvar is extremely busy, and you can tell quite a few of the customers have come in straight from clubbing. I join the end of the meandering queue and get prepared for a long wait; there are no vacant tables and so many people ahead of me.
However, I don't mind waiting because this is also the Aamukasteklubi (Morning Dew Club) which combines a hearty breakfast with live music! La Sega del Canto keeps us entertained between 6-7 am with their fabulous performances that include, among others, My heart will go on from the Titanic, as well as Jailhouse Rock. With the Elvis moves by the guitarist.

The best of all is however Rawhide. The saw player is a true master! The only problem is that while the duo has been playing, the customers before me have filled their plates from the breakfast buffet so much that we latecomers don't get the full choice - the café wasn't prepared for such a huge, hungry crowd! However, we get our breakfasts at a reduced price and I wouldn't be able to eat more anyway.
The puppet-led Heikki Heikkinen Trio is still playing when I decide to continue my walk to enjoy the lovely morning. The back yard of the house at Alvar Aallon katu 2 can't usually be seen from behind the fence and the trees, but now that the leaves do not yet cover the view, it is possible to see the shingles in the middle - rare on the wall of a Finnish house.
I continue along Keljonkatu street where there are a couple of older houses and some of them are still at least partly heated by wood. Just look at this neat pile of firewood in the open shed!
A bit further, at Korkeakoskentie road, the Korkeakoski stream flows energetically towards Lake Jyväsjärvi from beneath the railroad tracks.
Wood anemones, a sure sign of spring in Southern Finland, do not usually grow wild in this part of Central Finland so I'm not sure if these white wonders are wild ones or whether they have escaped to the woods from a garden nearby.
The early morning makes me walk slower than usual. I find a fellow slow walker finding its way across the asphalt walkway. Good timing, because at this hour he might actually get there without being ridden over by a cyclist or stepped on by a jogger.
At the end of Lake Jyväsjärvi, where the stream from Korkeakoski finally ends up, the writing on the wall demands: Tell us your story. To whom should I tell it to? To the rocks, the water, the road, the world? I get no answer. 
Slowly, I find my way back to Alvar Aalto Museum and its Breakfast Club. There is a new duo playing: the accordionists Duo Anitta...
 ...& Jouko Kääriäinen whose music creates a totally different atmosphere to Café Alvar. I realize the mood is very French, despite the fact that next the musicians play a beautiful Russian Birch waltz. I wonder when it is possible to have breakfast like this in Jyväskylä again! 
The sun is much higher when I leave the Aalto Museum and walk across the campus on which there is hardly a trace of the busy festival day and night. There are only few other walkers about, and again I see empty benches. Where is everybody? It is such a beautiful day, especially after the great breakfast and music to start it with. Thanks to Yläkaupungin Yö!

1 comment:

  1. Such soulful information, thanks! Love the juxtaposition of My heart will go on and jailhouse rock. This is great for new-in- town- people.