Sunday, April 24, 2011

9/2 in Vilnius

Inija dropped me off downtown on her way somewhere, and I decided to visit the 
Lithuania National Gallery. I spent half the day there looking at a stunning display of 
Victorian outfits
Exhibit Entrance

 and a horde exhibit of 8th-11th century jewelry.
 What a combination! As 
I was heading back downstairs, I heard a harp playing and walked into another gallery to 
witness a lady playing several instruments to a crowd of high school students. I just sat 
down behind them and listened for a while. The rain was quite steady outside and I worked 
my way back to the center of town by stopping at the gift shops of two more museums. The 
LNG is the only museum I've been to that had more visitors than workers. Oftentimes, it 
seems like I'm the only person in a gallery, and I am!
Slightly famished, I crossed the street to avoid the Catholic church where they had 
a"flash mob" last month wearing T-Shirts proclaiming that "Christianity is 
Occupation!" Seems like the holy fathers won't let the Heathens visit the remnants 
of Gediminas' personal temple to Perkunas (Thor) in the basement any more. (Harry 
MacBride and I were fortunate enough to view them in 1998. It was one of the few churches 
I actually entered.)
Slightly famished, I tried the new (to me) Zoe's Bar & Grill for a BLT & a Cosmopolitan. 
Both were excellent. Mostly replete and semi-dry, I ventured out again working my way 
back via a student art gallery, and then stumbled upon an internet cafe cum bookshop cum 
teahouse. Had a restorative pot of black tea and free pc while watching it pour in 
buckets before I ventured out towards the street vendors on Pilies (Castle) Street. 
I passed an Italian !!! bakery - I guess they moved here, too. The bread smelled amazing, 
and I bought a baguette and an olive roll for the house for later. The amber dealers were 
mostly rained out, packing up, and gone by the time I arrived, but one of my favorite 
little stores which sells goods made by the handicapped was still open. I like to support 
them, and bought many souvenirs including a hand-crocheted orange chenille phone case to 
add to my "Only in Lithuania" list. I also found a small, very lightweight, 
thin pine table for my house in Dvarciskes for $12 that I lugged back, too. All this 
shopping had made me thirsty, so I stopped at Cili's for a pear shake and a small plate 
of fruit crepes (they invent their own deserts)drizzled with sauce and topped with ice 
cream. The pear shake is actually called a pear cocktail, but it's basically fresh fruit 
in watery milk. It sounds terrible, but I'm afraid it's indescribably delicious! Caught a 
bus home and called it a day. We leave for Kaunas in the morning.

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