No.801 Finland







Todd: Mariel, you are from Finland.

Mariel: Oh, yeah. Yes, I am.

Todd: What city are you from?

Mariel: I live in a city called Espoo, which is right next to Helsinki, but I was born in the center of Finland in a place called Jyvaskyla.

Todd: Right in the middle?

Mariel: Yeah, pretty much right in the middle.

Todd: So is that way out in nature in the forest, or is it a big city?

Mariel: It’s a reasonable size city, maybe the fifth largest in Finland, but it is very, a very natural place still. It’s surrounded by lakes and forests and lots of cliffs and really beautiful scenery. Yeah.

Todd: Well, that sounds nice.

Mariel: Yeah. Yeah, I love it there. I go back there every year to visit my hometown.

Todd: Now does your family still live in your hometown?

Mariel: No, they live down south near Helsinki.

Todd: OK, is that common? Everybody moves to the big city.

Mariel: Pretty much, yeah. Especially young people. They want to get jobs and go to schools near Helsinki. Yeah.

Todd: Now is Finland part of the European Union?

Mariel: Yes, it is since 1995.

Todd: OK, so because it’s part of the European Union do a lot of young people decide to leave Finland and go live in other countries?

Mariel: The Finnish young people are actually very outgoing and they’re very interested foreign cultures so a lot of people take a year or two just to travel, just to see the world, visit some places, and yeah, a lot of people go out to other countries to study as well. Yep, mainly Europe but also a lot of my friends for example went to India for six months or to South America.

Todd: OK. Sounds fun.

Mariel: Yeah.

Todd: But because you’re in the European Union you can go live in France or Germany or Spain if you want, correct?

Mariel: Yeah. It’s very easy. Just go.

Todd: But do most Finnish people prefer to stay in Finland or do a lot of people like to go move to warmer climates?

Mariel: Finnish people are very patriotic. We really love our country. We like to visit other places but I think even if we live abroad for a long time most people always some back to Finland. I think especially if they want to have a family because Finland is a very safe place and it’s very good to raise your kids in Finland.

Todd: Sounds like a nice place.

Mariel: Yeah, I think so. You should come and visit.

Todd: Oh, I’d love to.




pretty much

Pretty much right in the middle. The term ‘pretty much’ is similar in meaning ‘almost’. Notice the following:

  • It’s pretty much finished.
  • It’s almost finished.

reasonable size

It’s a reasonable size city. When something is reasonable, that means we are happy with it or it is acceptable. Notice the following:

  • That’s a reasonable price.
  • He’s a reasonable guy.


Yep, mainly Europe. ‘Yep’ simply means ‘yes’. It is informal and used more frequently in spoken rather than written English. Notice the following:

  • Yep, I agree.
  • Yep, It is.


Finnish people are very patriotic. People who are patriotic love their country. Notice the following:

  • Younger people seem less patriotic.
  • My dad’s really patriotic.

raise your kids

It’s good to raise your kids in Finland.. To ‘raise your kids’ means to take care of them as they grow up. Notice the following:

  • It’s expensive to raise kids these days.
  • I could never raise kids on my salary.

Learn more!

pretty much • reasonable • yep

patriotic • raise his kids

  1. The flag on your car is very .
  2. He wanted to to be bilingual.
  3. , we are going there this weekend .
  4. It was a solution to the problem.
  5. The turkey is finished cooking.  Only a few more minutes.

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