Tag Archives: Tallinn

They call this art?!

Here’s what bugs me. On the sidewalk, this monstrosity is on display, and I’m supposed to be impressed. I’m not. It’s nothing short of moronic. But, maybe I’m just simple-minded.

Inside the studio (behind this “art” thing), on the other hand, some great material hung on the walls. The stuff on display is something like a blend of Francis Bacon’s treatment of Pope Innocent, touches of Viking heritage from across the Baltic Sea and a depressing use of color that reflects the Eastern European experience under the Soviet Union.

So, why the hell, I ask, did they put plumbing on display? Yeah, let’s make sure nobody sees the real talent by telling the public to like this garbage.

Pretty soon, we’ll start calling Home Depot an art gallery.

FSU! FSU!

I have now been to the former Soviet Union! I spent a day in Tallinn, Estonia, and it is an interesting place. The “Old Town” has a medieval feel. The streets are of cobblestone; they are narrow and cozy. Small alleys entertain visions of hidden gems.

The city is a bit touristy now, which I imagine is a reaction to the emergent demands of capitalism in a country that was once an oft-forgotten Communist bloc outpost. But, Tallinn has retained much of its European charm, with castles and high walls.

 

Scavenger Hunt Update

When I left New York, I told my colleagues that I wanted to see a Scandinavian midget. While I have seen several short people (though not many), none actually qualifies as a midget.

Aside from the midget search, the ferry ride to Tallinn is nothing short of dull. The boat is moving along, but I can feel the motion. On six hours of sleep and not enough coffee, it’s not pleasant. But, I’m willing to pay the price to catch a glimpse of something new.

Do you have your papers?

A small misadventure on the way to Estonia …

I did not realize that I’d need my passport to cross into Tallinn. Since I didn’t need it to get from Iceland to Finland– or France to Italy a while back– it was an easy oversight. Well, it won’t be my last flawed assumption, I’m sure.

Much to my chagrin, I had to run back to the hotel to pick up my “papers”. It seems that I could be stopped when I arrive in country (or coming back to Finland). I hope I get stopped [written while on the ferry] and asked my wife to take a picture if it happens.

This is my first trip toa former Soviet republic, and I’m psyched. I can finally get a first-hand look at the world behind the now nonexistent Iron Curtain.

Oh, I made it back to the ferry in time, with my papers. I actually ran part of the way, and it didn’t feel all bad. Nobody checked my passport.