July 21 2009
We’ve finally arrived to our last full day in Estonia. Looking back on it, time has passed relatively quickly. The first week here was a little slow and tiring but once we got used to everything, time went by a little faster. Estonia has been nice but at the same time, I am definitely ready and excited to go home. I think this is the first trip of my entire life that I’ve gotten a little homesick on…and I’ve only been gone for 3 weeks! But mostly, I think it’s probably me going through Camilo withdrawals. I have tried my very best to enjoy the time I’ve had here though. I’ve been relatively social and up for trying lots of new things, I’ve had conversations with locals, learned tons through the lectures, picked up a little of the language, and I’m pretty satisfied with the trip overall. I actually feel like I know more about Estonia than I do about Michigan at this point. I’m sure I’ll miss it when I finally get settled back into life at home. I always miss Europe in general when I’m at home.
But here are some things I’ll miss in particular about Estonia: pirukas, pelmeenid, canoeing in Sooma, the giant spongy bog with it’s Coke-colored ponds, Baltic Sea beaches, freestyle Estonian rap, real Russian food, the smell of Juniper wood, Russian street singers, barley cake, that crazy water slide at the Terevis Spa, thatched roof cottages, people with noses like me, cloud berries, the giant dance festival, the giant song festival, daylight until midnight
Here are also some things that I will not miss: daylight at 3am, ginormous seagulls on the roof top across the street waking me up with their cawing in the middle of the night, Finnish tourists, meat market clubs, soviet style architecture, boiled potatoes, dill in everything, showers that make the entire bathroom floor soaking wet, the city of Tallinn, 4 hour lectures
So yeah, I guess I’ll be happy to be heading back home but there are things that are uniquely Estonian that I will definitely miss. Every country has it’s own special flavor even if it is as small as this one.
Today we had a simple excursion to the open air museum. It was basically a set up of what a rural town would have been like in the 1400-1800’s. It would have been really nice except for the schizophrenic weather. First it was pouring rain, then it would be sunny and warm for 5 minutes, then it would thunder, then it would be cold and downpour for another 5 minutes, and repeat the whole cycle over and over again. Now, it’s just overcast and depressing looking outside but at least it’s stable. I’m so glad we had such nice weather while we were in our beach town. The weather in Pärnu couldn’t have been better. Really I liked every place we went a lot except for Tallin. My favorites were Pärnu and Tartu; good manageable sizes, a little safer feeling, less expensive, and better food and weather.
Tomorrow we’re catching the taxi to the airport at 6am and I’ll arrive in Detroit around 6:30pm (EST). So I’ll be traveling for around 14 hours….ewww. Wish me luck and hope that I arrive home alive! See you all State side.