This fall has been my busiest lady season ever so I had no time/energy to make any report it. So here you have a brief overview.
The mushroom season was excellent, especially what comes to horn mushroom and funnel chanterelle. The only disappointment was porcino which seemed to avoid my forest. Anyway I managed to refill my stock before I had to stop because many other bustle: I had something other to do every weekend since the mid September.
Me and my forest
In the end of September about twenty Finnish Nazis held a demonstration in front of the Helsinki Central Railway Station. A guy happened to walk by and he made some kind of spitting gesture towards the demonstrators. This was too much for them and one of the Nazis decided to give him a lesson – by serving him a karate kick. The victim fell and hit his head to the street. Next day he died.
The incidence sparked a huge outcry and the huge counter demonstration of about 20 000 people took place. There also were some minor counter counter demonstrations and there was an evident danger of clashes. Luckily the police moved the most violent counter anti Nazi demonstrations far away from the route of the anti Nazi train.
The Hauho summit took place in the beginning of October. We had feminists Rosa Meriläinen and Saara Särmä as our guest speakers. Their message was not to worry too much and to let just go. That message was originally meant for the girls and women educated traditionally. We told them about the other kind of women who may have even more complicated situation. I think we both learned a lot.
Kristiina shows Rosa and Saara our
Our music guest Andy with drums
On the way home we use to visit Voglia outlet shop where
the sales ladies always welcome us warmly.
the sales ladies always welcome us warmly.
I also have lectured in several places about me and transvestism. The audience has been for example psychologists, sexual therapists and staff of “confessor camp for kids not relying in god”. The feedback has been very positive and it seems I really can give some good ideas even to professionals. Anyway the most effective thing for the audience is to meet a real person, not just read about her.
In mid October we travelled to Southern Germany. Our main goal was the university town Heidelberg on the banks of the river Neckar. We also made a river boat trip to a minor medieval village Neckargemünd. Unfortunately the weather was rather chilly and rainy to enjoy the view and atmosphere even more.
A scene to Old Heidelberg from the castle
Just wondered if there were some trans people
in the family of the hotel owner...
Neckargemünd street scene
On our way back we visited Mannheim. The industry town Mannheim is very different from Heidelberg. However it has a huge royal castle with rich cultural history.
The Mannheim castle
When we went to Franfurt airport to fly back home there were some incidents to tell about. They had a new airport security millimeter wave scanner which seemed to give some difficulties for the staff. Anyway it showed something to be checked in me and I was patted down by security staff lady. I had some difficulties to explain why I wore foam hip pads...
At the departure gate we were informed the plane was over booked and because my spouse had told that we could be the ones to be grounded. And it really happened. So we were transported to an airport hotel and we both were given a token of 200 euros and some extra money to enjoy the dinner there. And next morning I was thoroughly inspected in the security control again...
At the airport hotel lobby
In the beginning of November we had our beauty salon trip to Tallinn: There we met Zarah and had a wonderful moment with nice view and with good food and company.
Me with Zarah
The busiest time took place in mid November. The TransHelsinki festival took place and I had many activities there.
The weekend beginning the TransHelsinki was also the FemF- feminist forum weekend. I had a floor there where I told about me and my thoughts of feminism and patriarchy. The texts are here and here in Finnish.
Having a speech at the FemF forum
Then I rushed to educate psychologists and after that I met my friend Tuija to train her my song about a transvestite. The problem was the original singer couldn’t do it so Tuija had to learn the song in two hours!
The song was performed in a night happening which was a mixed FemF closing party, TransHelsinki opening party and the open 20th anniversary of our transvestite club Dreamwear Club. I also was happy to have my oriental dance friends to dance with me there. The point was to highlight the inclusiveness of my hobby and to show respect for my dear friends. To organize a happening between three organizations turned out to be complicated. I had to ask several times where to change our clothes, when to be available for sound check and so forth. So in the evening I managed to have my performers perfectly in time – just to find out we had no time for sound check nor try the dance with the music on stage. It was odd that some other performers had enough time to try several pieces on stage.
The venue has formerly been a slaughterhouse. You just could feel it in the ”back stage” which was chilly and had a stink of a barn. Maybe it was the final place of the poor animals. The stage was built of rough logs. Luckily we didn’t have high heels in our performance and could somewhat manage. The problems were bigger with the burlesque group of my friend Hannamaria. When Tuija was to sing my song the mixer lad started with the maximal loudness he could get from his PA equipment. The result was Tuija couldn’t get the line until several seconds. But after she got it everything went perfectly. And we had terrific time together to the late night.
Tuija rehearsing at the back stage
Bettie's Angels with Hannamaria
Our leader Marinka applying false lashes to Katri
Tuija singing my song https://youtu.be/I_Bq6k11dLY
The other big event during the TransHelsinki week (there were some minor ones as well...) was the publication seminar of the survey about the discrimination of the trans people at work places. The inquiry has taken place in the spring 2016 and I had a lot to do, analyzing during the summer and writing the report and an article on it during the autumn. We had invited the representatives from both employer organization and the labor union. The results showed some severe discrimination but on the other hand there were very promising cases with no discrimination and cases where the situation has been got better because of the correcting actions. The big thing was: The more familiar this matter gets the less discrimination occurs. A brief version of the report in Finnish is here:
Telling about results of the the survey
The representative of the employer organization promised to try to include this point of view to the education of their HR personnel. The labor union representative promised to do the same in the education of their elected official.
In addition I have had some extra work with the committee of the trans issues of the LGBTI organization Seta. We have been active particularly in issues concerning the people with non binary gender. The Finnish trans legislation is old fashioned without the right to decide one’s juridical gender without medical judgement. The current government will certainly do nothing about it due to the True Finns party. We hope that the preparation of the new law will however take place. And we hope that there would be some preparatory activities to include the non binary gender there as well.
Last weekend was the last big one containing the representative assembly of Seta. We elected Viima Lampinen as a new president of the organization.
DWC representatives with just elected president Viima