In September Giedrius and I spent a week in Lithuania. It was a quite shorthand decision, but luckily visiting family and friends never needs to be planned long beforehand. So I packed some warmer clothes – as usual – because I always expect it to be a bit colder than in Austria. Oh was I wrong.. after what felt like months of gray sky and continous rain in Austria, arriving in Lithuania was a weather relief. It felt like going south, not north. We enjoyed a week of perfect sunshine and very warm temperatures during the days. Perfect for a little boat trip.
Of course we never go on a boat trip without some picnic that I then want to eat much earlier than planned. Must be the fresh air that stimulates my anyway not small appetite. Or it is the tasty Lithuanian salad? Probably also the homemade apple juice… I also love to eat in perfect scenery.
I don’t even want to share any “real” lake pictures or something here, because my pictures don’t even reflect a fraction of this beauty. Can be my photography skills are simply to rudimentary to capture this perfection, but I tend to think it has to be this way. You have to experience it, with the warm sun on your skin, the breeze in your hair and the sound of nature in your ear. If you can’t take a good picture of it, then you keep coming back to try to freeze the moment. And you don’t succeed because it’s not meant to be a still life.
I really like going to Lithuania, although I can’t really name a reason why. It feels a bit like being at home, but not – if anyone can imagine what I mean. I feel warmly welcomed there like in a home, but at the same time it’s different in so many ways. I have an entire set of things I look forward to going to LT. One is finding little frogs and holding them in my hand. I never did that until I was 23 or 24… where were all the frogs in my childhood?
In general it seems to me that I find more nature when I go outside in Lithuania. And there are also a lot of things that can be found just along the way. This piece of art, as I would call it, (below) is like in the middle of nowhere. Check out the leftmost sculpture… yeah, it’s exactly that what you’re thinking. I’m still wondering how that fits with the witch and stuff.
On the right, a view that I also have never seen at home. Austrians are also not so responsible to put on a safety vest. Especially in the countryside with basically no traffic.
At the end of the week we also spent a day in Vilnius, strolling around the city centre and going with the obligatory trolley busses. Some of which have a personal touch of the driver.
After having a delicious lunch with a friend at Vegafe – a vegetarian restaurant – we climbed the tower of Saint John’s church, which is a part of the University of Vilnius. The climbing isn’t that exhausting as you might think – an elevator runs almost till the top. So one can enjoy the view without having to catch breath.
With this weather we of course had the best view one could wish for. Here’s Gediminas tower, another good spot to climb for a panoramic view of the city.
We also happend to be there at the right time for the “nations fair”. This all uniqueness of Lithuanian food and crafts is gathered in one spot. Stands along the Gediminas prospect were inviting to discover.
Everytime I go to Lithuania in summer I also discover a fruit – now I wanted to write “…that I previously didn’t even hear of before.”, but in this case it would be a lie, because I just found out that this little yellow thingys that you see on the picture are quinces. Hilarious… I know them… but in Austria they are almost bigger than an apple and they definately taste different!
This is flavoured honey. Also didn’t know that before. If anyone wants to try, we have a glass of strawberry honey at home now!
And the food… so much to eat and not only because you mother- or grandmother-in-law try to feed you like a homecomer after war.
After losing all the extra kilos of this week, I’ll definately go back and eat more!