SAS Juleflyet 2013, Tallinn Part 1

 

 

Tallinn, a beautiful old city where you can see the old traditions are still being kept. Beautiful buildings in an Old #Hansa town, the prices are good compared to most of West #Europe, it's cheap. You have it all here for a great weekend getaway, food, drink, shopping, sightseeing and everything else you can desire. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Christmas market is where everybody gathers during the day to drink the traditional Glögg and watch to the entertainment from the stage. You can walk around and buy great quality wolly jumpers, gloves, hats, everything that is warm and good for winter you will find here. For those of you have been here I'm sure you are thinking, yes, I remember that, that's where I got my hat, socks, gloves etc. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is a different story, this is how I know Tallinn and this is very different from yours!

 

My story starts here!

 

6th of December 2013, what we have worked for all year is about to become a reality, this is my 5th or 6th time doing this, being a party of something special and meaningful. It is the departure of #SAS #Christmas #flight.

 

 

 

 

 

 

I'm not going to get into depth about what this is, because I have written a blog post from a few years ago where I explain the whole history behind the whole thing. However, after reading this and seeing my picture I think you will understand what this is all about.  

 

Just to give you a quick summary of the SAS Christimas flight or SAS Julefly as it is called in Norwegian, it is a charity where we help people in the slum and the poorer parts of Tallinn, Estonia. Mainly we help an orphanage with food, clothes, money and everything else you can imagine. If you live on the streets or in a building that are about to fall apart, with no electricity, no water, no safety and on top of this you do not exist in the system as you are neither Estonian or Russian (this is from the war and explained in my blog post 2011), you need all the help you can get. Many of the children on the orphanage comes from this situation, some from even worse situations (the worst thinkable for a child). 

 

Whats different with this charity from other charities is that we use a whole year to collect all the stuff we can get, food, clothes, hygiene articles, candles, school stuff, bags, shoes, toys, blankets, everything you can possibly imagine, money and we deliver it our self! No middle people who will take any money to do any jobs, no cost, we do everything on our free time (like all organisations). Absolutely everything we collect we have the pleasure of deliver to the Orphanage where the manager Mati takes care of it and hand it out to the people who needs it over the next year. If you gave me a gift and said give this to someone special over there, I will personally give that gift to that person. And when you have 80 people and their sponsors doing this, every little thing gets to the receiver and we are there to make sure of it.

 

 

Before the flight departed, for the 11th time to Tallinn and for the 27th time all together, we had sent 4 trucks with goods already. The flight was loaded to its maximum anyway though. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

That's me, proud and happy to be a part of this. I also helped with some of the luggage that was sent and there were loads of great stuff to be handed out later that evening and the next day. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The excitement is building up at the gate and we are so ready to just set off and visit the children at the Orphanage PEETELI. If you notice the last pictures you can see an article from that days newspaper, about the "father" of the Christmas Flight, Karsten Midtun.

 

On board we are being told a little bit about what is going to happen during the weekend and that we have a tight schedule so it is important that we all help each other with all the luggage we have sent. And trust me, it was a lot so I knew what kind of job awaited us at Tallinn Airport. But it is all fun though.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You won't understand it until you have experienced it, but the flight crew on this flight is such a great crew. They are amazing! The whole flight experience is so different from an ordinary flight, you get to have a look in the cockpit or you can help serve coffee or tea if you want to do that. We also have to clean the aircraft our self as we do not get any cleaning in Tallinn airport (as this is a charity thing), but the whole crew manage to turn that into something great and people can walk off the aircraft and say,"Yeeesss, I got to help cleaning up the rubbish, walked through the aisle with the trolley and everything". This is when and where all 85 of us is getting to know each other and start bonding and building a great friendship. Some of us have done this a lot of times before and know each other and some people are in on this for their first time.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So, collecting all the bags, suitcases and boxes on the baggage belt and then it is time to go see the children (and young adults as some of them are teenagers).

 

 

They are so happy when we arrive and they are very exited to see us and later perform for us inside the church (this is also where the orphanage is, attached to the church).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After some of the key people have spoken and there has been some singing from a great artist Camilla (beautiful voice on that one). We get to see some pictures from the not so great areas and tiny flats, and we got to hear the story of a (then) four year old little boy. This story was just from the beginning of this year!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When we learned what kind of situation he had grown up in, violent dad and drug addict mum, you kind of understood his behavior problems straight away. It was heartbreaking hearing this little boys story. But thank good for Mati and Solveig. Solveig has a long summer camp in  Norway every year where the kids and their mum can come, and she is in Tallinn a lot doing all kinds of charity work, and all the children and mums love her. She has dedicated her life now to take care of those who need it, and she is doing a great job.

 

So this little boy was taken to this camp for three months and even though it was very hard in the beginning, his behavior changed, a lot. A physio student in Tallinn, Peter (only aged 22) went whit the little boy to be his "dad" for the three months. Thanks to him and the camp this boy changed and learned that life was not the way he had grown up so far, and that he had people around him who loved him, cared for him and made sure he was safe. The little boy started after a while to say that he never wanted to go back to his dad again and sadly the day came where he had to. The screaming and crying from this little boy was horrific and I can only imagine how hard it was to bring him back to his dad, where you knew he would be abused. Thank good, the police came and arrested his father after a few weeks and the little boy got to move into PEETELI and is now in the care of the people there. He now has a safe and secure environment to grow up in.   

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

That's him giving Karsten and Mati a red rose and sitting on Matis lap to hear one of the other kids (young adult) sing for them. And after that the kids performed for us!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You simply fall inn love with each and every one of them, no matter age or gender. The joy of seeing each other again is overwhelming and you know right then and there that these are the children you want to help the best way you can for as many years as possible. We all depend and rely on one another now.

 

 

After the performance we walk around the church and orphanage and the kids who live there are more than happy to show us their rooms. It is so nice to see that they have a safe and protective environment to grow up in and that they no longer have to stay on the streets or in families who can't or won't take care of them.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The time came when we had to go to the hotel and start to get ready for the next day, however, before that we went out for a little walk around the hotel area, we always stay at Sokus Viru Hotel (actually a former KGB hotel, and if you are every there, make sure to go on the KGB guided tour). The hotel is located in the heart of the old city of Tallinn.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Early start  next day in order to be able to do all the stuff that has been planned for such a long time. It is going to be a long day, but we are prepared for that. It starts in Kopli, the slum of Tallinn where the people who live there have no electricity or water in the houses, the houses should have been abandoned a long time ago as they now are a hazard for everyone.

 

 

To be continued...............

 

 

Read the whole post on www.mstraveltipsy.com

 

 

 

 

 

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Mstraveltipsy

Mstraveltipsy

34, Oslo

Jobber for et flyselskap så selvfølgelig elsker jeg å reise! Sol og varme er vel favoritten, men er også klar for alt som byr på opplevelser! Så langt har jeg vært på over 200 steder i ca 50 forskjellige land. Bloggen består av reise tips, opplevelser, shopping, mat og drikke. Her vil du også finnne tipsene som ikke står i noen reisebøker! Sjekk også www.mstraveltipsy.com

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