Just some last minute Riga notes – I was overwhelmed by the number of people passively begging. You go into a Catholic church and there were six people lined up with their cups waiting for a coin. There were none inside the Lutheran churches; I suspect since the churches charge admission, the cashier shoos them out of the lobby. There are a number of them on the outside though. There were people obviously in their 20s and 30s presenting themselves in really nice clothes and shoes, outwardly healthy, sitting in one place from early morning when we would first pass to late evening, when we passed again.
Traffic lights are strange and comical too. Angeles told us that the cars have 68 seconds to drive through a light, but pedestrians only have 6 seconds to cross the street. He commented that if you are disabled, you are in trouble. Traffic will start up and weave around you. What was comical was when you could hear the buzzer that the light was favoring pedestrians, people ran from the middle of the block to cross the street.
It was frigg’in cold. Coming back to Budapest was like returning to spring. Riga was as cold now as it is here in the middle of December.
See the photos, click here.