EOTG (and so the adventure continued...)

Article published on July 18, 2007
community published
Article published on July 18, 2007
And so Chris' Tallinn odyssey continued... Episode 7: Bird Trouble After another protracted night's sleep, your hero collects his things and heads to the airport. I see the upside of my nomadic experience as I manage to negotiate the city on foot and without need of a map. Without the stress of navigation, I have the opportunity to reflect on the my surroundings.
In many respects Tallinn reminds me of Stockholm: the wide throughfare and shopping area of Parmu Mnt could be Medborgaplatsen, and the winding cobbles of Viru remind me of dragging cases through Gamla Stan many years ago...

night Boading the plane I look forward to a couple of hours sleep, only to have my slumber interrupted by the intercom. "Ladies and gentlemen, a bird hit the plane on the previous flight and so this aircraft is grounded" and myself and my fellow passengers are herded back through customs for the 2 hour wait for new boarding cards. I get on the morning flight and so grab a taxi back to the city...

The sun is out and it is scorching hot. I stop off at a place called Cafe Moscova so I can get online and tell people what has happened. Looking around the bar, people are stylishly dressed and the waitresses are insufferably beautiful - seemingly picked from the local model agency. I feel out of place. By this point I have 4 days of stubble and I treading a fine line between appearing tousled and dishevelled. I feel like shit and want to go home.

Episode 8: This Charming Man

I text Margaritta to see if she can help find me a place to stay. She phones around and comes to my rescue (for which I am eternally grateful btw). She sends out a contact, a girl called Lina, to point me in the right direction of a hostel. I walk in and my hosts are kind and welcoming. The girl at the desk remarks that "it is so lovely to hear such a proper, polite, charming Englishman". In the space of 30 minutes I have gone from feeling like Oscar the Grouch to feeling like James Bond!

Unpacking I meet an English guy called Anton and we go for a beer. He is a literature student at Oxford and is stopping in Tallinn before taking the train to Beijing. He is intelligent, eloquent and could have come straight out of an Evelyn Waugh novel. We spend a couple of hours chatting about Estonia, Metaphysical Poetry and much more besides. After the stresses of the last few days this makes me feel so much better. I get a few hours sleep and get my flight without incident...

Episode 9: Epilogue

Sitting in Amsterdam airport I have the opportunity to reflect on what has happened over the previous few days. There have been a multitude of highs, a number of sleep deprivated lows, but on balance I feel like I am all the better for my rather unique experience. EOTG in Tallinn was a success and I saw a side of a city and a people you would not get to experience as a tourist. As for Cafe Babel; EOTG in Tallinn pushed the envelope for an already burgeoning magazine, I met new and interesting people and experienced a new perspective on journalism...

It was a pleasure to experience.