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Tuesday, December 1, 2009


I step out from Olevimägi willing my feet to decide my route for me. My ears pick up the sweet sounds of a working yet laidback city. My nostrils sort through the smells of spice bread and, inevitably, beer. Will these feet of mine take me down Uus, or sulevimägi or vene? Or will they lead me down along the Laboratoorium with its many regular tiled towers? They lead me down cobbled Sulevimägi and onto Pikk, my stomach now pulling me forward as only a stomach can. It whispers, 'stuffed pancakes' and then 'dumplings, russian dumplings.' But no, the first suggestion was the better. Pikk takes me to Rataskaevu and thence to Kompressor, the pancake place. The close cream houses have an almost Mediterranean flavour around me as I enter for some savoury comestibles. After an enormous chicken and feta pancake, Voorimehe street leads me into Raekoja Plats, the square before the Town hall where hangs a crowned dragon protecting or enslaving the local populace. I decide that I'd enjoy some altitude, and to that affect I climb the many stairs of Lühike Jalg through the doored gateway-tower up onto Toompea, the hill above the lower town. Skirting Lossi Plats and the onion domed Alexander Nevsky Cathedral I walk along Piiskopi street to Kohtu Street. The cobbled lane opens to a patch of park shaded on both sides by old buildings. I sweep along the path from Kohtu and come to the primary reason of this high open park. There before me rests the little old town of Tallinn, with its orange-topped tower walls and winding cobbled alleys, the wonderful food wafts its perfume towards me, reminiscent of my recent meal. The lilting rhythmic speech that is Estonian fills my ears as I am joined by a handful of locals to savour all that is Tallinn.

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