Travel Poetry – 1

I have decided to try a new genre called Travel Poetry – I hope you like it.

Small squads of tourists heading to the palace in Kadriorg Park, each with a different photo to take,

It is a mini-Versailles according to the locals.

The President’s pink house is there for all to see

cyclists,

sunbathers,

walkers,

chatterers on seats,

duck watchers,

beautiful blondes dressed in black without a hair out of place even in the breeze, sitting at cafes drinking lattes and being seen.

Trams dropping off tourists who ask is this the right place?

Lawns,

trees,

pathways,

shade and,

bright, bright sunlight illuminating the other half of my bench.

People asking is he writing about us?

No.

Fountains playing that same endless game,

gardens reflecting in ponds, and

parents pushing strollers

This is Kadriorg Park.

 

Tallinn, Estonia: a very Baltic Christmas

For an authentic Christmas market, Tallinn is hard to beat. But it’s not the only reason to go

Tallinn’s ‘new Nordic’ food scene – and the restaurants leading the way

A new generation of Estonian chefs is feeding a culinary revolution by mixing Scandi-style cooking with traditional flavours to create innovative dishes at affordable prices

10 of the best things to do in Tallinn

There’s a lot more to Estonia’s capital than cheap beer. The 1,000-year-old city has a modern vibe, with architecture, museums and cafes to match

Rolling Estonia: a wilderness adventure in fairytale forests

John Gimlette and family lose themselves in the haunting wintry wilderness of lacy-white swamps and forests, before seeking refuge in restored pastel palaces

Istanbul – Bazaar – 6

This extract is from ‘Travel Tales from Exotic Places like Salford’

The occupations detailed in the museum were those of Nazi Germany and then the Soviet Union. I watched some propaganda films of Estonians literally singing the praises of
Josef Stalin, yet he deported 87,000 Estonians to Siberia. These people were given a small wooden suitcase to pack their belongings in and then were shipped off, sometimes forever, to the Gulags.

Then, in one of those weird coincidences that happen sometimes, I saw that same type of Lenin ‘badge’ that I’d seen in The Grand Bazaar. However, this time the ‘badge’ had a ribbon attached to it and I suddenly realised that what I’d seen in Istanbul wasn’t a badge at all but an Order of Lenin, First Class, a medal awarded to precious few Soviet dignitaries.

Now I understood the steep price in the bazaar.

Written on their faces: the people of modern Estonia – in pictures

‘I believe that the human face is the best document of time,’ says Birgit Püve. Since 2012, she has been capturing the humour and defiance, modernity and traditionalism in Estonia as the country forges ahead two decades after the last Soviet soldiers left