Wednesday, July 25, 2012
This is a warning to all the Estonian blog readers. Don't ever travel with Linda Line! They are the hydro foil who claim to travel to Finland in 90 min. This blog post is to warn you of their lies and incompetence. Yesterday we went to the temple which was a wonderful experience. The trip over took an hour and 55 min, not 90 min. This is actually standard, Linda Line can only reach Finland in 90 min if there isn't a single wave on the sea and if the boat is empty, but how often does that happen? The return trip was the worst. Our return trip was canceled because of technical reasons. We were given the option to return on an earlier boat with 53 min notice. We rushed from Espoo to try to make it but missed the boat by about 2 min. We then had to pay an extra 10 bucks for a ticket on the Tallinnk boat that left later that night. When I was buying the tickets I saw that there was a sale on Linda Line tickets, 36 euros for a round trip and a sale on Tallinnk tickets 36 euros for a return trip. Somehow I had to pay an extra 10 euros for the Tallinnk return ticket. I choose Linda Line because it was faster and had an earlier departure time. The ironic part was that the Tallinnk boat took the same amount of time as Linda Line. Linda Line takes no responsibility for their incompetence and treats their customers poorly. If anyone reading this blog is considering a trip to Helsinki please choose another company that is reliable. There is no reason to choose Linda Line, it will not save you time or money. Linda Line sucks
Posted by Matthew Crandall at 12:00 PM
Sunday, July 22, 2012
Posted by Matthew Crandall at 8:27 PM
Sunday, July 15, 2012
At the end of June we went to Tõrva - my home town - and places nearby. A lot of the time we had to tend my little relatives. It was fun! For me the most important part of my home town is nature. So that was our trip - kids and nature.
The first photo is my cousin´s sauna. Yes - you have to throw water on the rocks or it will not be sauna but just a room that is slightly more hot than usual.
My granny´s garden
A cemetery where my aunt is buried. A nice old cross and a stone fence.
My little relatives. The middle one lives in Finland.
An old church
Taagepera is a place where my mom´s mom used to live. There is a nice old manor house (or even a castle) built back in 1906.
Some of the manor houses where Baltic Germans lived were very fancy like the one in Taagepera. Now it is a hotel and people like to have their weddings there. Taagepera is extremely small - only 109 people live there. But back in the day it was a large and wealthy manor. Hugo von Stryck, the owner of the castle, spent lots of money to build it. They even brought building materials from Riga (with horses).
Here you can see how the castle is the nicest part of the tiny village. Rest of the buildings are quite run down.
Here is where my grandmother lived. It was a wealthy farm before the Second World War. The owners were deported to Siberia so my grandmother got the place. Now the real owners (children of the deported people) are back and restoring the place. It looks so good now but just a few years ago when my granny moved it was not this nice...at all.
The lookout where the kids hung out is still there after 20 years.
Lake Vanamõisa - my favorite.
My grandmother loves flowers and plants.
Watering can still being used.
Tõrva (pop 4000) has one restaurant and it is called Latvian Embassy. No, they do not offer Latvian food.
Now the kids:
I like taking pictures of people but as my favorite model lives in England (my sister) I have to take pictures of kids.:) This is inspired by the Pellinor books.
This shy little boy hid in the trees but then after a candy bar he was not so shy any more.
More kids, meditating on the trampoline.
Cheap work force :D
A cake I made for Elvis´s birthday.
Elise in my mom´s place where I lived for 10 years. Surrounded by woods and fields.
A piece of art by Matthew:
My mom´s house, old or vintage, what ever you prefer.
Elise and lake Vanamõisa
Strawberry hunt in the park in Tõrva (this place is great for jogging)
My granny´s green house
In the green house
And this last photo is Elise making soup.
Saturday, July 7, 2012
The first thing I noticed about Bremen was how awesome their Trams are! Wow, they were really awesome. They even had a ticket machine and a mail box inside!! I know that Tallinn is going to replace one of the four tram lines with nice new trams but that will be in a few years and it will be hard to compete with the German ones. The trams were nicer than Finland and even cheaper. The state of Bremen has about 600,000 people and about 18 billion euros in debt, so that explains it I guess.
This was my first real trip to Germany, I had an overnight layover once before in Frankfurt, I took a train to Mannheim to visit a friend but I didn't see too much. Germany was really awesome. I hope I can go back another time.
Posted by Matthew Crandall at 4:55 PM