Through the handmade glass vol.2
You think I'm little bit critical for Latvia? I prefer the antique capital of Latvia to the chaos of the scrap and build. But for some reason picture of Ukraine is overlapped when I'm in Latvia. Oh, Ukraine ... That was tough travel to me. The police who tried to hustled me, a street gang, winos in the city, then the conflicts in recent years.
Of course Latvian people is kind enough, police can be trusted and cities
are safe. However I felt similar air to the Ukraine although I don't know
My 'Eastern Blocs' impression to Latvia must cased by the chance to hear
Russian language compare to Estonia. Both countries have Russian people
in same rate for the population, 30%. In Estonia for example, a road sign
is written only in Estonian language while it's written in Latvian and
Russian in Latvia.
In a market, I saw all the people said "Dobro utro (Good morning)"
That's one of few Russian phrases I knew.
So I asked to the local people. "What's going on the language in this
country?" Here is the answer. The official language is Latvian. Although
from the historical back ground, Russian also widely used. The people older
than middle age had an education of the Russian. Therefore they speak the
Latvian and Russian. The young speak Latvian and English although they
know only practical Russian. Meanwhile some people from Russia or Belarus
etc. whom I mentioned before speak only Russian language. "Ah, market?
That's a kind of special place Russian language is frequently used"
The place Russian merchant made a business with their powerful network,
I guess. After all, Latvian people switched the languages depend on the
Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, the three countries are known as Baltic
states. Visiting those countries at once is popular plan for tourists.
Meanwhile I kept my slow travel pace. I spent most of the time on an isolated
island in Riga bay, some Estonian towns and Latvia's capital city, then
time's over. The impression I got from the short travel is the each country
has each character although they are rounded up by the tourist as "Baltic
states". For the people of the each country Tallin and Riga could
be one of foreign cities.
In another words the Baltic states are so diverse. So gotta see Lithuania
too? (Actually my only knowledge about the culture of Baltic states had
been some Lithuanian movies) I must mention it someday in Lithuanian issue.
" Coffee stand " Riga, Latvia 2016