- As both Pirkko Aalto and Miska Isotalo grew up in the countryside, they wanted to return to nature from a growth centre. They finally found a home in the beautifully scenic Pyhämaa.
At the end of a narrow and bumpy dirt road is a low house with planking. Winter twilight is gradually approaching the courtyard, but a small storybook pond is still visible in the inner courtyard.
Underneath the calm and still surface, there is a world full of life.
“Water voles and grass snakes thrive in it, as do birds. Occasionally, a blackbird flies over the pond, and sometimes we even get a visit from a stork. A swarm of dragonflies buzzes above the surface in late summer,” says Pirkko Aalto, describing the inhabitants of the pond in her yard.
A couple of years ago, Aalto and her spouse Miska Isotalo moved to Kukainen, Pyhämaa, located in northwest Uusikaupunki. Both grew up in the countryside and wanted to get away from the noise of the growth centre and get closer to nature.
Primarily, we wanted to get closer to nature, preferably somewhere close to water. In Turku, you had to find the forest area, but here you can just walk out of your front door and find yourself in the middle of nature,” says Aalto.
The couple started to narrow down the selection of detached houses on the coast between Turku and Rauma. Isotalo favoured the familiar Pyhämaa and the municipality of Pyhäranta, but the couple viewed houses elsewhere as well.
“I may have had a subjective opinion, as I am from this region and have also previously worked close by. We had a look at the wooden houses in the centre of Uusikaupunki, but we were more drawn to nature,” Isotalo says.
The couple found a home in Pyhämaa following a search that lasted less than a year. A house that was being sold as a cottage was not exactly what the couple was looking for, but the scenic view of the seashore from the large bay windows in the living room and the forest at their doorstep won the couple over.
The surroundings were eventually more important than the house
Aalto and Isotalo’s dream of living amidst nature came very tangibly true. There are deer, foxes and brown hares in the yard area. Once they even saw a moose take a swim in the sea. In winter, you can see otters dipping in the water, and admire a passing white-tailed eagle in mid-flight.
Everyday services, such as the village shop or post office, are in the Pyhämaa village. Occasionally, the couple take a half-hour drive to the centre of Uusikaupunki to do their shopping.
Isotalo and Aalto are also fond of the accommodating lifestyle of the Uusikaupunki residents. Isotalo says that he already managed to become part of the local community when he was younger and worked in the area.
“I started work as a newbie, and I didn’t know anybody, but I became a part of the crew straight away. People here are very accommodating and friendly,” he says, and Aalto nods her head as a sign of approval.
The couple feel at home at the seashore, amidst accommodating people and embraced by the rich nature. Here they will stay for a long time, perhaps even for the rest of their lives.