Running hot and cold (and hot again) travel blog


Music bowl

The ferry to helsinki


Artisanal market

Today started quietly and except for the lack of sleep, everything is great. We went out first in the bus for a bit of orientation and then walked from the top of the old town where nobles lived, down to the lower bit where merchants lived and worked. It was staggering to hear the ages of the buildings. I've got a photo of a house built in 1410, which is the exact number of the room I'm in. Kevin bought a jumper from the sweater market, but my money was safe. I'm not feeling the need particularly to buy souvenirs from here. David and Kevin headed back to the motel to do their washing but Libby and I went and had lunch in the square. We sat in the sun, gossiped and enjoyed people watching. It was the first real relax we've had. I thoroughly enjoyed doing nothing for a bit. We walked slowly back to spend a quiet afternoon on our own.

The other Lynne tried to give me the money back I said no, I don't need 500€ thanks just repay it into my account. Geez... Are they thick.?

The people seem very fashionable. There sort of seems two different face types. A Russian face and a Scandinavian countenance. It's probably right as between 1/3 to a 1/2 of the population is Russian, as in China, a deliberate Russian plan to dilute the ethnic groups and homogenise them all to Russian. In some degree it's worked as the common language they all speak is Russian. Estonians, Latvians, Lithuanians, finlanders all speak their own language and enough Russian to communicate as the other languages are not necessarily known well to each other. To illustrate this the guide told us a story of how similar Finland's language and Estonian is, easy to communicate but also for miscommunication. So she had a group that she booked into a motel. The staff tried to speak in their language to be polite and friendly and intended to say... Good morning your rooms are ready and clean for you but said good morning the dead bodies are decorated for you. Guess that was a shock for the people... Must have wondered what they'd walked into, and then burst out laughing? So, any wonder Russian is safer.

Later in the afternoon I had plenty of visitors. Firstly a woman who repeatedly tried to stick her key in my lock and force the handle. Eventually I opened the door and she wanted to argue that I was in her room in a different language. Then I could see light solely dawning. I'm not sure where she was meant to be but it want her. Then, her friend came and wanted to do the same thing. After that bit of excitement DAVID and Kevin came for a drink, some garlic cheese and some chips. We were knocking back a beer each when the door went again. The two Lynne's burst in without being invited in and asked David whose room it was and where was I. David said it was indeed my room. Neurotic Lynne said she was half tipsy as she'd had two wines and was here to tell me how to cure restless legs. She made Kevin clear a space and proceeded to get down on her hands and knees on my floor. She asked me for a book and a blanket. I said, I really don't have a book and a blanket. So after a small amount of time that felt like one hundred years they left.

We headed upstairs to check out the sky bar. Fabulous! I got some sunset shots. We went to a weird place for dinner. Like ikea for food. David and Kevin got pizza but I got pasta. When you walk in they give you a card like a credit card. Then you order at the counter and they prepare it in front of you. So the pasta came out of a brown bag, already portion controlled and tipped into boiling water, the sauce made from scratch with all the ingredients ready chopped. It was a quick assembly and then the pasta tipped in and I was done. The pizza was similar. The whole restaurant was some sort of assembly plant. Strange. Ok but not necessarily fabulous. Definitely acceptable.

Rita has her partner Ted here now. He seems nice enough. He's been on the tour with us today. Not much else to tell you. A good day. A bit of tourist stuff, a bit of eating local food, a bit of rest and a bit of fun. We've enjoyed Tallinn. But we've done it now.

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