Erick! Where are you going again Lat..? Latvia I said, when I was talking on the phone with my friend then she said to me, where is this place again? Took me sometime to explain it where was located and it was part of the Baltic’s countries, but didn’t have to much luck. But now days with technology and internet make it easier to describe things. So after 10 min I said just google it and you will see where is it, pause…she said wow didn’t’ know was part of Europe? cool!! Well hope you have fun there, take care my friend and I hope is not too dangerous out there….
Baltic’s!!!, every time I hear one the cities of this region like Vilnius, Riga or Tallin, my heart pumped and I feel a mix of nostalgie and happiness. I spend almost a month traveling around there, at first I calculated the time and said a week will be fine to visit this 3 countries, wrong I overstayed in every single city there. And that’s the best thing of not have a schedule, time frame, just go with the flow.
I met the most energetic, positive and friendly people ever. Always trying to help you with something and willing to make some time in their busy life (school, work, etc) to show you around or meet you to share travel experiences and exchange culture, traditions, etc.
One of the reasons I joined couchsurfing was because I want to experience the culture of each country I was going to visit. Meet local people is the best experience in a journey like this, they really know “what’s up!” They know where to go, places to eat, to drink, places that you don’t find in books, or travel guides, and the best how to get discounts or find cheaper places to go (goldmine for a traveler).
Meeting locals, and experience how they live, think, and how they see live is so fascinated and you experience something I call “culture shock “is the best thing when you exchange traditions, thoughts sharing a beer, coffee.
I’m not too fan of Museums, I think they are really important to learn about culture and all things happen in history but how cool is to meet someone is a local, and they can talk to you for hours about their live, background, family roots, etc.. Most of the people come from a different background some from Russia, Belarus, and one of each always has a fascinating stories. The mixed between all this cultures is priceless.
For each of you I met on my journey to the Baltic’s I want to say thank you for everything you share with me , thanks for make some time to meet with me and show me your culture, thanks to make a beautiful experience in my trip. I learned so much of you guys that I definitely coming back, but this time in the spring or summer where I can use my rainbow sandals, and feel like a Cali boy in Europe.