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Party Life
Here we present unique experiences from the wild partylife around the world.

Finland: Zetor - rocking among tractors - Part 2 of 2

To have real fun in Helsinki, I could not think of a better place than Zetor. The discothèque is decorated with humorous interior and has a countryside style. Here the locals show what the Finnish word "Sisu" means. Soumi Rokkia is really great!
Photo. Entrance at Zetor - located in Helsinki down town.

To have real fun in Helsinki, I could not think of a better place than Zetor. The discothèque is decorated with humorous interior and has a countryside style. Here the locals show what the Finnish word "Sisu" means. Soumi Rokkia is really great!

Helsinki is the beautiful capital in Finland. The life in Helsinki is quite pulsating and this is the city where you really feel alive, especially in one discothèque, the Zetor Bar and Restaurant. It`s the most distinctive and funny in the city. This is the place where you can soak up the real "Sisu"-atmosphere in Finland. Sisu is like an invisible power that the Finnish is equipped with.

The term Sisu characterise the inhabitants more than anything else. In the Finnish culture Sisu refers to good guts. It means more precisely special strength, stubbornness, encouragement and stamina.

I have been to Zetor several occasions the last years enjoyed tasting Finnish food, homemade ale and special drinking hot shots. I have also had the pleasure to dance to the powerful Finnish rock`n roll music - SOUMI ROKKIA! 

In addition I have tried to drive old Zetor tractors, which are parked inside the discothèque. Fortunately for the happy guests' safety, none of the tractors started.

Photo. Trying to drive a tractor inside Zetor. It was real fun rocking the tractor in Zetor. I guess I frightened many of the guests.

Zetor is located in down town Helsinki, but with all special decorations, I sometimes felt was in the countryside. So by soaking up all the impression here, I got imaginations about Finland's agriculture, farming, thousands of lakes, endless forests, snow white winters and light summer nights, and not to forget the bloodthirsty mosquitoes, wild reindeers and the Santa Claus himself. The Finnish claim that Santa Claus is from Finland, but he is of course from Norway. Anyway it's not so important where he comes from as far I got my presents (well deserved???).

Unique decoration
Zetor is an example of that the Finnish are unique innovators in design and architecture. Since the bar and restaurant was first established in 1992, its unique style has made it to one of the most popular nightclubs in Helsinki. It has also become an popular tourist attraction, and many tourists from abroad enjoying visiting this place.

In addition to the dancing floor, Zetor comprises two bar areas, two restaurants and the tractor tables. I assume that the barn dancing floor had been hardly exposed after so many years with wild dancing to Finnish (Soumi Rokkia) and International Rock 'n' Roll music.

Photo. Wall decorations in Zetor, Helsinki.

As mentioned, Zetor is like an agricultural place. The discoteque is full of farm machinery as furniture, tractors for tables, old buckets, cheese graters for lampshades, milk bottles and milking machines. Malto Valtonen, who has the lead vocal in the popular Finnish rock group, Leningrad Cowboys, is the architect behind the unique design. In the men's toilet, there are more or less naked women, who decorate the walls. Absolute nothing is missing in Zetor.

Dance and singing along
Guests at Zetor are both men and women in all ages. The place is always full pack in the weekends, and sometimes it's so hot that it feels like being in one of Finland's many saunas. One time I was there for two years ago (2001) the atmosphere was extremely great. The sound from the music was very energetic. The disc jockey played mostly Finnish music, and people danced and sung along. I had a really good time on the barn dancing floor, and so did the other guests too, but it was not without little bit extra action.

Photos. Dancing and singing along at Zetor - keep your balance!

First I got a hard elbow in my stomach. For the second girl stamped my foot with a sharp shoe. I screamed out in pain, but the girl didn't notice. She just continued her happy dance. Later I got a glass in my face. Fortunately it was without any cuts or spelling. Suddenly a big "bull" broke his way through in the dancing acrobats. He started to jump and whirled wild around on the dancing floor. I suspected him for being overfilled with Finnish "Sisu".

After a while he went totally amok. He waved and shouted as it was bullfight. He pushed away the other dancers. I tried to dance little bit, but it was not possible so far the bull continually staged me. Due to "health" reasons", I went to a safer place where I could view his incredible dancing show from a far distance. I had never seen a break dance like this before. I assumed that this man had taken something stronger than alcohol.

He had two small friends with him who looked little bit tamer. They took it easier and didn't see to harm anyone so much, but they back up their friend's wild dance. The other dancers started to be fed up by the crazy big bull, so they moved away from the dancing floor too. Few minutes afterwards three "matadors" (guards) came to carry him out. They took him by his horns and feet, lifted him up and carried the evil looking bull out of the bullfighting area. The bull didn't like this treatment, so he turned wilder, but he didn't have chance to escape. I never saw the bull and his bull calves afterwards, so it ended happy for us all.

Photo. The discjockey was great. He played Soumi Rokkia whole the night.

This man really knew what kind of music he should play to rock the guests.

I know that Finland have good jumpers. Just as the crazy bull, also the other guests jumped around, but it was more like wild reindeers. Actually Finnish people are very good at jumping. In addition to be world trendsetters in design, I could now also see why Finland has the best ski jumpers in the world. The locals lifted their hands and song along Finnish songs filled with strong passion. Especially when the excellent disc jockey played the song Bombasa, song by Taiska, their voices rose up to big heights. This has to be what the Finnish call "Sisu" when they have a great time like this. It shows the Finnish character as it best and they really love to have fun!

Traditional drinks
The "gasoline" Finnish people use when they are partying is Koff beer, Salmiakki and Finlandia Vodka. These national drinks lift people up to great heights, and Finnish "Sisu" would be showed in the best way. Koff is the best bear in Finland in my opinion. It's a light bear that make you even thirstier because it's so good. Salmiakki (sal ammoniac) is absolute one of the Finnish specialities. It is a salty liquorice candy with 32 % alcohol percent. Salmiakki is a black candy with a sweet and sour taste, also used as shots. You will either love it or hate it! One thing is for sure; you will never forget it even though the drink probably make you forget other things if you drink too much.

One of the best songs ever in Finland is called Kevat, song by Tavaramakkinat. It's a sad song about lost love and Salmiakki. When the beautiful song is played, loving couples dance very tight, and strong emotional vibrations fills the Zetor. Other national drinks are Kosenkorva Vodka and Finlandia Vodka, is pretty strong and also lightening up the Finnish mood. Just to let you know: Zetor also offers own strong shots that almost blow your head off!

Helsinki, is the centre of cultural, financial and economic activity in Finland, but it's also the centre for the best party activities. Zetor is one great alternative if you want to have a real good time. There are also several other great places for having great fun here. The Finnish people are opened minded and easy to get in touch with. They just love the party life. "Sisu" is something I really admire about the Finnish. They really make the atmosphere Sisu-great!

Stein Morten Lund, 27 august 2003

Additional information
Helsinki 's green parks, waterways, nice harbour area, fresh sea winds with seagulls flying over the busy market square, and many open-air cafés, make the city a pleasant place to visit in summer. The Finnish are famous for design and architecture.

Photo. Hard workers in Helsinki`s city center.

You will find evidence of that by walking down the main street Esplanade and other places around in the city. The city is characterised by small buildings. The market square is still surrounded by 19th century architecture.

Finnish design on its best is also shown on Marimekko clothes and Nokia mobile (cellular) phone, some of them with Marimekko design.

Built on a peninsula, Helsinki is linked by ferry to Suomenlinna Island in the Gulf of Finland, which is perfect for picnicking day-trippers.
Some useful phrases that can make your stay more pleasant in Finland:
Finnish language could be very difficult for foreigners. For example: the language has few prepositions. Therefore some of the words are extremely long. Take a deep breath, and just blow the words out. The Finnish people would be totally charmed!

• Kiitos saunasta - thank you for the sauna. The sauna is an important institution (Finnish hot bath) in Finland as the pubs are in Ireland.
• Kiipis - toast, cheers (for drinking)
• Olutta - a beer
• Vodkaa - a vodka

For more information about Finland:
Finnish Tourist Board's official travel guide to Finland - website: www.visitfinland.com.

On this site you'll find information about how to make the most of your trip, whether you are visiting for pleasure or business.

Finnish Tourist Board
Head Office: P.O. Box 625, Töölönkatu 11,
00101 HELSINKI, FINLAND Tel.: +358 (0)9 4176 911
Fax: +358 (0)9 4176 9399
E-mail: mek@mek.fi

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