David held his Hallowe'en party on Saturday night and here are some shots. Click for a bigger version.
Homeward (I'll be) bound. Just having our final five star breakfast in the same room as previously occupied by Prince Charles, Neil Tennant and Whitesnake (although not concurrently one supposes). Then heading to Tallinn airport for our noon flight. It's been a fun trip but looking forward to being home.
Our full day in Riga was full indeed; churches, cathedrals, castles, museums, markets, monuments, Parliament, food & shopping. I must say, nice place. But we didn't see one smile all day. Must be the cold. The highlight for me was the Museum of Occupation 1939-1991 - very moving. Naturally we finished off the day/night with a bar crawl & then a Balzam nightcap. Balzam is thick, sweet, uniquely Latvian & 45% proof. Think we will be driving back to Estonia with hangovers today.
Blimey! We finally arrived in Riga after a marathon seven and a half hour drive from Tallinn. Our Latvia experience hadn't started well with a stroppy boarder guard barking orders at us. Then endless roadworks on the A1 and the new winter-time speed limit of 90 km/h coming into effect last weekend further compounded our delays. To cap it all though was the 90 mins we spent circling round and round Riga's Old Town trying to find a way in. This was incredibly frustrating as it was not only rush hour but also dark and the delights of horizontal sleet were sent to taunt us too. Tired, cold and wet we did eventually get to our hotel - to be pleasantly surprised at how very nice it was. Naturally we then did what any tourist first does and flicked the TV channels to find some natural disaster on the National Geographical Channel while we unpacked. Minutes later we once again heading out into the freezing cold and driving sleet - this time in search of a bit of beer, a bit of food and a bit of gay nightlife. The beer we found was Dutch, the food Latvian but the gay nightlife very 1980's. We had fun though. At least the music wasn't Eurovision for a change. We must have made a funny trio propping up the XXL bar: the uncle, the nephew and the niece. A couple of Swedes tried to engage us in conversation but fell at the first hurdle. They came from Finsbury Park. As if.
Opps! Spot the deliberate mistake. At 3:30am The Balkans & The Baltics seemed pretty much indisquishable. Apologies to Serbs, Croats, Slovs, Estones & Lats alike. We are, of course, in The Baltics.
Tallinn was lovely. We did the tourist thang & did the Old Town. Then dinner, X-bar (what? Eurovision night again?) & bed. Up at the crack we motored down to Pärnu where we stopped to snack, wander & look at the beach. God it's cold here.
Next stop Riga.