Thursday, July 02, 2009


So the key element to Jani is to stay up to see the sunrise. We were not too far from the coast of the Baltic on the way from Riga up toward Estonia. At some point, as we were running out of firewood and had been drinking for hours, it was agreed we should go see sunrise on the beach. We walked through the forest for a while in the mostly dark of night. It started getting darkish around 11:30 I think, though you could always see sunlight along the Western horizon, or the Eastern Horizon, or sometimes both. We set out at (I think) about 2:00 for the beach. We mostly went the right way, despite having to dodge some fences and some barking dogs and some giant road-construction trenches dug in the trails and some attempts by the more inebriated among us to abandon the beach plan and divert course to some big party in the woods somewhere that we could hear blasting out "Macarena" at 1000 dB.

We got there at about 3:00 (about when the picture above was taken) and it was getting light, and though we could still see a few bonfires up and down the beach, we all were a little tired from the walk (and the beer) and mostly just sat around staring at the sea. By 4:00 it had been broad daylight for some time and we started the walk back to base camp. We got back to our camp -- basically the backyard of the country house of a friend's grandfather -- at 5:00 and crashed out. Your correspondents had to head back to Riga later that morning, but I suspect that our hosts got up later than us and went straight back into grilling meat and drinking beer.

We hereby recommend that America adopt this holiday in full.

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