måndag 8 december 2008

The Great Independence Day Party In Kathmandu

Smooth jazz! Sunny weather! Great food! Great people!

Wow, on Saturday Finland celebrated 91 year of independence. I must admit I was sceptical when my wife said we are going to the reception at the Finnish embassy here in Kathmandu.

I saw myself falling asleep at a stiff ceremony with long speeches and perhaps one glass bubbly during the whole afternoon.

I was so wrong.

The embassy team headed by ambassador Pirkko-Liisa Kyöstilä had put together a splendid afternoon party.

The Finnish snacks were great, hard rye bred with cheese and smoked reindeer meat. And every good Finnish party of course requires miniature Carelian pastries – these ones had nice cheese spread on top. Full points there.

When it was buffet time the chef team got our full attention with their splendid Nepali food. Full points there.

The jazz music was far away from your usual cocktail background stuff. The band included Norwegian piano guru Jan Fadnes and Spanish horn master Mariano E. Abello on saxophone. Both teach at the Kathmandu Jazz Conservatory and are legends among Nepal's jazz aficionados. Full points there.

Add to that the well-stocked bar and the smooth service by the smiling waiters and you have the perfect afternoon. Full points there.

And of course you had all the cool cats enjoying themselves. Nice people and no speeches. Can it get any better?

PR wise it was a smash hit for Finland. You should have heard all the nice things people said about Finland. Made me blush.

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