Noilly Prattle: Land of the “midnight sun” and all night partying

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Land of the “midnight sun” and all night partying

guide map of Tallinn, Old Town
    Tallinn is the capital city of a small Baltic country called Estonia. The Old Town, compact and charming, is a UNESCO World Heritage site. It is just beginning to be “discovered” as a tourist destination and so remains relatively unspoiled and, in many cases, not yet fully repaired.

Viru Gate on the left,
Mickey D's on the right
      Estonia, as an inhabited area, goes back to the ending of the last ice age some 10,000 years ago, give or take a few. The people were once a part of the Viking culture of the Scandinavian region and anchored the eastern end of the Hanseatic trade and defense league around the 16th Century. Until the collapse of the Soviet Union Estonia was an SSR (Soviet Socialist Republic) and a Warsaw Pact nation. It is now under the political influence, a NATO member, and economic philosophy of the West as is well shown by the proximity of a McDonald's restaurant to one of the Medieval wall gates. Progress?

our apartment bldg.
on the right
the casino -at night the square
is alive with the raging hormone set
      Summer days seem endless. Dawn was at 3:42 am, sunrise at 4:47 am, sunset will be at 10:06 pm and dusk at 11:10 pm. That makes for a 17 hour and 19 minute day. The daytime hours belong to senior and family tourism; the night time, right below my window, belongs to the raging hormone and endless energy set. There is a casino in view of my apartment window and a couple of night clubs just up the street. Under our 5th floor windows is a square with park benches, where the young drink, play loud music and carouse while taking a break from clubbing from dusk to well beyond dawn thus making summer days a 24-hour affair.

      Did I mention that I love it?

      The Old Town is quite small and easily walkable, even for people like me who are recovering from femur fracture surgery. And so we travel about “mirando, mirando, sin aliento”, to quote an old Sonoran Indian sage. And, of course, my trusty little Panasonic Lumix is always with me—mirando for the great shot. 

Old Town Square getting "discovered"

Old Town Hall

beer break - just the thing for a walkabout

fixer upper? - needs a little work

these young people hand out flyers
dance show for tourist diners
on Old Town Square

wouldn't you give this lovely girl a flower?

sidewalk cafe - on the right wall
you can see old tombstones
an old tombstone on the wall

preserved part of the old town wall
Viru Gate - part of the old town wall

lovely "bird lady of Tallinn"

feeding seagulls and pigeons in the park

Old Town Hall tipped in gold by the setting sun

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