November 25, 2014

Riga!

Doncs... finalitzats els cursos del primer bloc (tots aprovats!) i durant les mini-vacances que teníem (un cap de setmana ¬¬), vam anar "de creuer" a Riga amb uns quants companys.

El viatge és ben simple, i ben habitual aquí a Uppsala i àrea d'Estocolm. Agafes el ferry al port d'Estocolm, passes 17 hores al vaixell (vespre, nit i matí), gaudeixes 5 hores (o menys) de la ciutat, i tornes al ferry, de camí cap a Estocolm altra vegada. No és luxós, ni còmode, ni molt agradable, però surt bé de preu si vas amb prou gent i, almenys, et permet fer una mica de turisme (i comprar alcohol, pels interessats).

A nosaltres ens va tocar viatjar amb el vaixell MS Isabelle, que té història i tot. És bastant vell (25 anys) i no és molt gran. Les cabines més barates (de 4 llits, a la segona coberta, ubicada per sota del pàrking de vehicles) són petites i els passadissos estrets. No és fashion, ni modern, i té un aire rococó bastant cutre, però almenys pots dormir en matalassos, que ja és alguna cosa. I les cabines inclouen lavabo i dutxa, que ja és tot un privilegi.

In English:

So... after finishing the courses from the first block (all passed, yeah!), some friends and I spent our holiday-break (one weekend ¬¬) in a cruise to Riga.

The trip is simple and very common here in Uppsala and Stockholm area. You take the ferry at Stockholm's harbour, spend 17 hours in the ship (evening, night and morning), enjoy the city for 5 hours or less, and go back to Stockholm that same evening. You won't have any luxury, and it is not very comfortable, but it's cheap if you go with some people and, at least, you visit the countries around you (and buy some alcohol, if you are interested in that).

We travelled with the MS Isabelle ship, which even has some history. It is quite old (25 years) and is not very large. The cheapest cabins (4 beds, in the second deck, under the vehicle's parking) are small and the hallways are quite narrow. It is not fashion, nor modern, it reminded me of the Rococo era, but at least we slept in matresses, which is something good. We also had our toilet and shower in the cabin, which I considered a privilege.





Seguint amb els serveis que ofereix l'embarcació, hi ha un supermercat amb productes de tot tipus (roba, menjar, joies, alcohol, colònies, etc.), un bar/restaurant que està prou bé (no vaig provar el menjar) i del qual pots utilitzar les taules per menjar el teu tupper, jugar a cartes, fer el mongui, etc., i un buffet "de qualitat" que ofereix productes sense lactosa, vegetarians, i sense gluten, però que no és de tanta qualitat com venen (jo vaig quedar decebuda). També hi ha espai per fer conferències o altres històries, però no ho vaig veure.

In English: 

Talking about the services offered by the cruise, there's a supermarket with lots of different products (clothing, food, drinks, jewelry, perfumes, etc.), a bar/restaurant that seemed decent (I didn't try the food) and you could use the tables to eat your own food, play games, etc., and a "high quality buffet" that offered lactose and gluten free food, as well as vegetarian food, but it was not that good. I was disappointed. There's also a conference room or something, but I didn't check that one.



Així doncs, el viatge és certament tranquil i "avorrit" fins que arriba la nit. Llavors s'encenen totes les llums, la maquinària es posa en marxa i cert ambient "eslàvic" inunda el vaixell. El Club Heaven, que intenta ser una discoteca però que està 100% buit i el DJ és un borde de collons, obre les portes, i l'Starlight Palace il·lumina l'escenari i treu totes les seves armes de seducció. Concursos que recorden a la televisió dels anys 80, grups de nenes ballant danses eslaves amb els vestits típics, noies que canten... tot us espectacle digne de veure. El tema és que, com que no hi ha res més a fer en tot el vaixell, té un èxit rotund. Ara sí, tot acompanyat d'alcohol.

In English:

So, the trip was going as peacefully as it could be, even boring at times, until the night came. All colored lights went on, everyone was ready, a certain slavic flavour invaded the halls. Club Heaven, which was an empty nightclub with a very rude DJ, opened its doors, and Starlight Palace lighted up the stage and showed all its seductive weapons. Contests that reminded me of the 80s, girl groups dancing traditional slavic dances, young girls singing... A sight to see. The thing is that, since there is nothing else to do in that place, the show it's a huge success. Of course, alcohol was there.


Bé, crec que ja he dit més o menys tot el que volia comentar del vaixell! No em deixo res al tinter... Bé, va haver-hi unes horetes d'onades prou grans com per fer perillar el sopar ja ingerit, però tot va quedar en un ensurt.

Total, que cap a les 17h del dijous dia 6 de novembre sortíem d'Estocolm i a les 11.30h del divendres arribàvem a la ciutat de Riga.

In English: I think I said everything I wanted to say from the cruise. Well, for a time, there were some dangerous waves that risked our already eaten dinner, but everything ended up okay. In summary, on thursday 6th of November, at around 17h, we left Stockholm and on friday at 11.30h we set foot in Riga.


Estava intentant recordar el recorregut que vam fer però és impossible. No tinc ni idea del que vaig veure. En resum, ens vam dedicar a caminar pels carrerons encantadors de la ciutat, vam aturar-nos a veure totes les esglésies possibles, vam aturar-nos a prendre cafès, tès i pastes a un lloc ben acollidor, ens vam aturar a la típica botiga de records per comprar el que tocava (got de xupito al canto!), també ens va donar temps de passar per un supermercat i recollir productes de la terra (¬¬), un mercadillo on venien productes artesanals i on em vaig comprar el meu actual moneder, més voltes per carrers, monuments, la Venus de Willendorf, i ja de tornada cap al vaixell perquè ja eren les 16h de la tarda. Jo vaig dinar de tupper per evitar corredisses, els altres van dinar pastissos, del plan Fika. Les tradicions (sueques), ben arrelades.

Apa, aquí va el carret de fotos. Ah, evidentment plovia, però la temperatura era més alta que a Uppsala.

In English: 

I was trying to remember what we did and which way we took, but it's completely forgotten. I have no idea of the streets that we walked or the things that we saw. In summary, we just walked around the beautiful streets and buildings, we visited as many churches as we could, we stopped for a coffe, tea and pies at a really nice and cozy place, we went to buy some souvenirs, of course (I got my shot glass!), we also had time to go to the supermarket to buy food from the land (¬¬), we enjoyed a very nice craft market (where I bought my current purse), we kept walking, we also saw the Venus of Willendorf and, after that, we went back to the ship because it was 16h already. I had my own food for lunch (just to be safe), but the others had lots of pies, Fika style. Swedish traditions are strong.

So, here you have some pictures. Oh, it was raining, of course, but the temperature was warmer than in Uppsala.

















Bé, un cop tornats al vaixell ens esperava una llarga travessia de tornada. Res era novetat, així que no va haver-hi cap sorpresa que decorés la nit. L'activitat per excel·lència va ser la compra d'alcohol al vaixell (els preus són més barats que a Suècia, però similars a Riga ciutat). Jo vaig comprar una ampolla de moscatell, que el vaig trobar a faltar per la castanyada, i una ampolla de Black Balsam (JSC Latvijas Balzams), licor típic letó que calia provar (i que no m'agrada gaire).

In English:

Once back at the ship, nothing was new, so we didn't have any funny adventure. We spent a lot of time buying drinks at the supermarket (they were way cheaper that in Sweden), and I bought some "moscatell", which I missed during "la castanyada", and a bottle of Black Balsam, a typical latvian liquor.



Res més especial a dir, excepte les precioses vistes de bon matí, d'entrada a l'arxipèlag d'Estocolm. Feia molt fred, feia vent, i plovia, però era MOLT bonic. I nòrdic.

In English:

And there's nothing left to say, except for the beautiful views that we had saturday morning, when we were entering Stockholm's archipelago. It was very cold, windy, and rainy, but it was stunning. And nordic.




The end.

Nat