Our voyage begins yet again as episode of “The Amazing Race” as i arrive at the Moncton Airport sans my passport (yup bone-head move I know!) So we race back to Shediac and get caught in construction traffic both times…I return to the airport 20 minutes before departure time BUT they have closed the gate and will not let me on so–o- I am rerouted through Toronto in lieu of Montreal and then from Frankfurt change from one airline to another.
This airline’s “pods” do lie flat like a bed but while I cannot see the people beside me I am kind of face to face with the people across from me! Very unsettling especially as I am obliged to use the “air sick” bag on landing in Frankfurt (uhuh..real classy I know)
We are surprised at how we got off the plane in Tallinn, grabbed our bags and waltzed out of the airport without anyone looking at us and no one verifying passports.. Our passports were stamped in Germany but not in Estonia.
The weather is crisp and grey with sunny spots and about 16 degrees.
I enjoy lunch sitting on the Terrasse of a Medieval Restaurant (why not?) in the Town Square in Tallin. It always boggles the mind to think I am sitting in the exact same spot where people sat 500+ years ago!!
I spend the afternoon walking in the old town in and out of churches and shops and art galleries and I am tempted by the “Traditional Estonian Dish” but the thought of sauerkraut (even as a side dish) makes my stomach burn so chicken pasta it is! Even the Club Sandwich I order for dinner has sauerkraut and beets!
The architecture resembles most European cities. I would have thought it would look more like Russia with that famous architecture but I have yet to encounter that. I know I am in Eastern Europe though the moment I get in the taxi and onwards as I am surrounded by those gorgeous Slavik eyes.
Late afternoon I attend mass in a 14th century cathedral.
The mass is lovely, full of people of all ages and it is really quite something to turn to either side of me as well as in front and in back and offer my hand “in peace” . I am not sure I can describe it. Although I waver in my beliefs it is quite a feeling to be surrounded by believers. I feel the same no matter what the religion. I belong for this moment in time to a gigantic family. I visit Kadriorg Palace. A Baroque palace which was literally built for Catherine of Russia by Peter the Great. In Estonian called Kadrioru loss and in German calles Catherinethal both names mean “Catherine’s Valley”
We are served dinner in a restaurant in the Old Towne. As is the case in many of the traditional restaurants our servers wear medieval clothing and we served “grog” in beer steins that are worthy of two strong arms to lift to the lips. There is jousting in the background and a fair maiden or two in need of saving.
Once back in my hotel room I find the most wonderful radio station,,,I can’t understand a word that is said but the music is the perfect pairing to this interesting country; home of “Skype” , geographically similar to Moncton, a ferry ride away from Helsinki and an entire population with it’s history varying from Russian to the Teutonic Knights to German to Estonian governance.
Signing off in Tallinn