I’m stoked about my next trip, which will happen in less than a month from now – Riga, Latvia!
Not only am I happy just to be finally flying again, after several months of staying put (which is several months too long), but I am going to visit one of my dear friends while I am there, see some other friends, and I am traveling with friends; I somehow managed to convince three of my best buds here in New York to book the trip with me.
But what did I know of Latvia?
Not much, prior to booking this trip, and I’m ashamed to admit it. I knew that Riga was the capital, I was aware of its Baltic location sandwiched between Estonia and Lithuania, I knew that the country had a population under 3 million, and I knew that the language is a Baltic one, most closely related to its Lithuanian neighbor to its south.
However, these are generalities, answers to some trivia night, but in no way does it mean that I know anything about Latvia. And even though many people, even Latvians themselves, may tell me (and have told me) that there is nothing to see and no reason to come to this small country, I still feel awful when I meet somebody (and I’ve met quite a few) from this Baltic state and can’t speak of their origin save for the aforementioned trivialities, especially when I meet them in my hometown and they know everything about New York City.
True, the Big Apple is four times the population of that country, but as a traveler and world citizen, I should totally know more about other places than what I do now. So, in the next few weeks, I’ll be soaking up everything I can about this country; I’ll read about it, write about it, and I’ll post about it after my trip (which also will include Copenhagen, Denmark and Stockholm, Sweden).
I met Anna S. and some other great people at a New York City CouchSurfing event, a picnic one August Sunday in Washington Heights, 2012. From then on, Anna’s energy became a vital source of our own, and her laughter and loud yelling became our soundtrack for the rest of her stay in New York. Sadly, she left back to her home in Latvia in late October, 2012, but we’ve kept in touch and only strengthened our friendship. New York City still feels quiet after her departure, but I mentally put on my headphones whenever I get a chance to write and chat with her.
Can’t wait to see you!
UPDATE: Trip completed, unfortunately, but we had an amazing time. Check out the deets: Exploring Riga, Stockholm, and Copenhagen in a Week
Also, check out some neat trivia about the Baltic country: Top Facts About Latvia