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Europe » Lithuania » Vilnius July 5th 2015

Today we did not bike, but walked a lot. Warm to hot, depending if you were in the shade. Nice wind if up at higher elevations. Definitely a sunblock day. Ate breakfast at our flat. Walked to National Cathedral and Museum complex. The climb to the upper castle was easy on this very hot day. It provided a commanding view of Vilnius. Went to the top of the tower, looked at various exhibits here. Then went to the National Museum. Looked artifacts and castle remnants mainly from 1350 to 17th century. Very interesting Lithuanian history lesson. Later had lunch at Japanese restaurant and sushi. I had "warm" sushi, which was very good. Later went to Museum of Genocide. This the building where the Nazis and Soviet era KGB performEd their ghastly work. Overall pretty depressing. They ... read more
Attempted panoramic at upper Castle
Yet another panoramic at upper castle in Vilnius
National Museum of History in Vilnius - tiled furnace

Europe » Lithuania » Trakai July 4th 2015

Biked about 25 miles today for a total of 457 miles. Sunny and hot today. Reached nearly 90 F. Ate breakfast at our flat. We had picked our bikes last night at the bike shop here in Vilnius. They gave us great directions to get to Trakai. We followed as prescribed until I noticed my day backpack had slipped out of my rear rack spring loaded clamp. This has credit cards, ID, money and iPhone in it. I had to double back to finding before some vagrant struck it rich. After about 2 miles there it lay on the sidewalk, untouched. Had a bit of a scare. From here on I cared it on my back, even though it was a very hot day and this increased perspiration considerably. The ride to Trakai was fun and ... read more
Southern Trakai lakes
Pam goes for swim
Inside castle at Trakai

Europe » Lithuania » Vilnius July 3rd 2015

Biked about 2 miles today for a total of 432 miles. Sunny and warm to Hot. Cooler in the shade. Absolutely no rain. Got up at 6:30 am to catch the 7:30 am bus to Vilnius. Road with Ecoline bus service - free coffee, tea, WiFi. Straight shot from Riga to Vilnius on freeway. Arrived at 11:15 am. Left our gear at la ocker, as our AirBNB room would not be ready until 3:00 pm. We went on a walking tour in the old town and in the fictious republic of Uzupis, created by drunken artists and now celebrated by locals and tourists. Good overview of Vilnius centrally. Had a difficult time finding our new home, but it was worth it. It is a studio apartment near the only left gate to the old city called ... read more
Sign at entrance to fictious Republic of Uzupis
Statue of mermaid along river in Uzupis
Swing on river in Uzupis

Europe » Lithuania » Vilnius June 14th 2015

Our final blog before we return home to Idaho via Paris next week. Last weekend we took a somewhat last minute trip to Vilnius, Lithuania to stay with Olya and Andrei They live in New Old Town Vilnius in a charming and comfortable flat. Olya is an amazing cook, delicious dinner and breakfast. Yummy chocolates from Dziugas. They were our tour guides to Old Town Vilnius, a UNESCO world heritage site. 11 km of sightseeing on foot (the distance was not obvious until we covered a blister on Kevin’s heel and George felt super stiff calves the next morning) We walked through the Jewish Quarter and ducked into the inner courtyards of several buildings to snoop. Too many church spires to count. We visited several old churches, the castle tower on top of the hill. We ... read more
Arrival in Vilnius
balloons in the evening
sign encouraging us to smile

Europe » Lithuania » Vilnius May 25th 2015

Our first stop on our summer 2015 quest-trek is Vilnius, Lithuania where Ray taught a Strategic Management course at Mykylo Romerio University. This was our first visit to Lithuania, but hopefully not our last. We loved the people we met, places we visited and the teaching opportunity at MRU. In addition to teaching his class, Ray was also invited to present a Plenary Session at the International 5th Practice and Research in Private and Public Sector Conference hosted by the MRU Faculty of Economics and Management. We were graciously entertained during our stay, and loved every minute! A big thanks to the collaborating faculty, staff and students with whom Ray worked who went out of their way to ensure we had a great experience. A special thanks to Egle Malinauskiene, Ilona Bartuseviciene and Dovile Kurtinaityte and ... read more
Ray's Strategic Management class at RMU
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Europe » Lithuania » Palanga May 5th 2015

Day 5 - Gizycko to Palanga The day before, on leaving Wolfsschanze, we had noticed signs for another smaller bunker that also promised the chance to see a U-boat and a V-2 rocket. It was close to our rented apartment in Gizycko, so we headed there in the morning before our 7 hour drive to the Lithuanian beach resort of Palanga. Now called Mauerwald, it was set up as a basic museum, with shop window mannequins dressed in German uniforms posing next to pieces of WWII equipment and weaponry. There were no information boards or descriptions at all, though seeing a 3 dial enigma machine was interesting. There was also, totally out of place, a representation of the Amber Room. An astonishingly valuable treasure, the room was stolen by Nazis but never found after the war. ... read more
Amber room representation
Amber room backstory
Not Dave

Europe » Lithuania » Vilnius May 4th 2015

Heute bin ich den ganzen Tag in Vilnius herumgelaufen und haben die wichtigsten Sehenswürdigkeiten besichtigt.... read more
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ein deutsches Lokal!!
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Europe » Lithuania » Vilnius May 3rd 2015

kR + k Da ich nicht die Autobahn entlang brauste, dauerte die Fahrt den ganzen Tag, war aber auch sehr interessant. Die ersten 100 km und mehr war das Land kaum überm Meeresspiegel, so 10 m, alles flach. Dann kamen die Endmoränenwälle und mit ihnen Steigungen und Kurven. Ich habe festgestellt, dass seit Hannover Endmoränenwälle groß mitspielen im Motorradleben... Kiefernwälder mit einigen Birken, Straßenzustand wechselt von perfekt zu Imperfekt (weil voller Spurrillen und sehr uneben), alle Straßen, die von der Hauptstraße abzweigen sind ungeteert. Störche, die meditativ am Nestrand sitzen und sich überlegen, ob sie heuer schon genug aufgebaut haben oder of noch was drauf muss - manche Nestbauten sind 1 Meter hoch. Kaunas: War früher Hauptstadt (1920 - 39), ist mit 350.000 E die zweitgrößte Stadt des Landes, ein Wirtschafts- und Handelszentrum. Ich bin nur ... read more
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Europe » Lithuania » Klaipeda May 2nd 2015

Klaipeda - Nidda 125 km Wetterbericht: zuerst: kR, sk, Mittag: sR + sk, Nachmittag: kR + sk (5-7°C) Als erstes brauchte ich Geld, die lokale Währung. Überall standen die Preise in Euro und in litauischem Irgendwas, aber sicher haben die noch keinen Euro, oder? Ich überprüfe bei einem Währungsrechner im Internet - es gibt einen tagesaktuellen Kurs von Euro zu litauischem Irgendwas. Also ein Loch in der Wand muss her. Die Rezeptionsfee schickte mich zu “dem großen Platz, da ist das Casino, da gibt’s ATM.”. Nur war der große Platz nicht wirklich auffindbar. Ich kreuzte durch Klaipeda, sah auch gleich alle Sehenswürdigkeiten, aber weder Casino noch Bank noch ATM. An einer Ampel erfuhr ich dann, dass es in einem Einkaufszentrum einen ATM geben soll. Das ist wahrscheinlich völlig richtig, aber gegenüber war auch eine Bank. Beim ... read more
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Europe » Lithuania May 1st 2015

Es regnet und ist saukalt Ich träumte (nun schon zum zweiten Mal), dass Brigitte mit mir fährt und - jetzt kommt’s - dass sie mein Zahnbürstel benützt. Und statt dies einfach stillschweigend zu tun, erwähnt sie es auch noch jedes Mal und irgendwas gefällt ihr daran nicht. Dass sie im Traum mitfährt ist nicht verwunderlich, wir sind schon einige Monate zusammen gereist, aber das mit dem Zahnbürstel beunruhigt mich schon. Ich werde ihr daheim sofort ein eigenes schenken. Ich bin deshalb so empört, weil ich mir dieses Interdental Riesenbürsterl schwer erkauft habe, mit 4,5 Std beim Zahnarzt, die Bürste war das Abschiedsgeschenk. Und das will ich einfach nicht teilen.... Frühstück nahrhaft und fett - Fernfahrer geeignet aber nicht unbedingt köstlich. Zwischen Frühstück und Mittagessen konnte ich im Restaurant sitzen bleiben, aber jetzt bin ich beim Fernseher, ... read more
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