Sunday, May 31, 2015

Vilnius to Parnu

It was a long drive. Lithuania's A-2 had a big 4 lane highway with a wide divide in the middle. It was the only time I saw anything like in the Baltics. In Latvia, people passed within inches of oncoming traffic. I was nearly victimized twice by overambitious passers traveling in the opposite direction. In Latvia they also decided to gut one of the two lanes periodically so that we had to wait to take turns.

The day started with a trip to Trakai, an ancient castle on an island about 20 minutes from Vilnius. At first I tried to park on the sidewalk of a library, but an old man gestured no. So we parked closer to the castle. The castle was awesome, but the surrounding town is so touristy. It's old lady sitting in stalls selling faux souvenirs. It's paddle boat rentals. It's theme restaurants. Inside the castle, you were able to experience history for a fee. If you paid, you got to see a knight show in English.

Needless to say we took are photos of the outside of the castle and the gates. The water around the castle was amazing. We scampered back to our car and drove across the magnificent Lithuanian scenery.

We stopped at Hesburger. Then I tried to get gas. There were two pumps; both were occupied by big bad Latvian biker dudes. The biker dude that I needed to move wasn't filling up and then walked away from his motorcycle. I drove up close to that bike to see if the pump could reach my car's gas tank.

The other biker yelled something to his buddy and the buddy raced over. They asked me something in Latvian and I answered, "Yeah." Then the biker jumped on his bike and pulled forward ten feet to let me fill up my tank.

When we finally made it to Parnu. The town was empty. We walked around the deserted miniature downtown area. We ate at one of the few open restaurants. We ordered too much food and gorged ourselves until we were stuffed. We then saw the sunset at 10:45pm near Central Bridge over the Parnu River.

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