I visited the oldest Finnish Rotary club, founded in 1927, on August 7, 2006
at the Palace Hotel on the harbor in downtown Helsinki.
This club has 120 members,
all men, but had only about 40 in attendance for a very austere meeting... no singing,
no happiness, no split, no announcements... just the introduction of me and then a very timely
The speaker was a government official speaking about
the Israeli-Hezbollah war, complete with charts and maps. Several
members are also current or former government officials (I sat next
to an Ambassador) and they asked a lot of questions. It was a lively
Unfortunately, I understood nothing, as the entire
program was conducted in Finnish.
The meeting started at 11:45 AM and concluded
punctually at 1:00 PM. The food was terrible. Cost of lunch =