Daugavpils: Part 2

Daugavpils: Part 2

11.2.18 We all got off the tram at the last stop in an empty part of the city after we had purchased breakfast items at a local supermarket. We followed our leader down a path and through a tunnel. The fortress was not immediately evident. Then we came to another tunnel that turned out to …

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Daugavpils: Part 1

Daugavpils: Part 1

10.2.18 For those of you who don’t know, Daugavpils is Latvia’s second largest city and is sometimes thought of as the most Russian city in Latvia. According to Wikipedia, it is over 50% Russian. As I look at the Wikipedia page, I am struck by the complete desertion of the city from 1920-1950 when the …

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Nameja Gredzens: The Pagan King

Nameja Gredzens: The Pagan King

The Pagan King I finally saw it! This is the Big Movie for Latvia’s 100th anniversary! It is named Nameja Gredzens in Latvian and for some reason, they translated it to “The Pagan King” in English. The Namejs ring is a common symbol for Latvians, and many of my Latvian American acquaintances. It was my …

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Patterns of Light

Patterns of Light

Gaismas Raksti: Cultural Experiences After a week of cultural experiences, I need to write something to deconstruct what I have observed, felt, and discovered. The title of this post is based on the multimedia show we experienced last night by Shipsea, a Latvian rockstar, at the National Library, Gaismas Pils. The title of the show …

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January Beach

January Beach

Ziemā Pludmales 14 January 2018 After we arrived back in Riga this afternoon, I was making up new words to Lou Reed’s “Perfect Day” and singing aloud on Gogoļa street past the cold people waiting for a bus, carrying a pussy willow branch and a bag of driftwood from the Gulf of Riga. I like …

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Innocent Until Proven Guilty

Innocent Until Proven Guilty

29 December 2017 This is something I have been trying to process for awhile, so I’m just going to write it out in a short post here to see where it takes me. When I woke up this morning, I saw this article in the Omaha World Herald about the Millard South Principal who is …

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Changing a Bike Tire

Changing a Bike Tire

28 December 2017 If you know me at all, you know that I am no mechanical genius. However, I have come to terms with this in my own way, and I am able to fix most things around the house. I grew up with no understanding of tools. We had a screwdriver, and we had …

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Winter Musings 2017

Winter Musings 2017

I will not call this my Christmas letter or epistle or whatever. I am just sitting here on a Sunday night thinking that I should really probably be writing something. There is this interesting phenomena that I have noticed happening when you disconnect from people. When you are in the immediate circle of intimacy with …

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Latvian Holidays: Viva Atšķirības

Latvian Holidays: Viva Atšķirības

The Holidays Holiday season is upon us! So far, I have survived enjoyed a few Latvian and American holidays here in Riga. I have already written about Halloween, and this week we had a sort of Latvian/American overlap. Right now, a turkey is cooking in my tiny Latvian convection oven. I hope it is okay. November …

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