Baltic Cruise Tallinn

Jan Leeming

Shoreham 2007

Shoreham Airshow 2007
Me looking brave before taking to the air (and the wing) of the plane. Wow, it was cold !! But the whole experience was totally exhilarating.



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Jan's Blog

Computers and the internet are amazing things. One of my concerns with putting together this site was that it could remain current, yet with all my travelling I've often much to say, but little time to say it. Years ago when reading the news it would take me days on end to reply to the kind letters people sent. Now, with the magic of the modern age, I can keep you up to date with what I'm doing and other events in my life.


Date: 14th September 2009


Our next port of call was Tallinn in Estonia.  We decided not to go on any of the tours but just to have a leisurely walk around the old town instead.  I find that there's only so much I can absorb and enjoy and too many museums, art galleries and cathedrals simply merge into one.  It reminds me of the very old film 'It's Tuesday, it must be Belgium' about a group of people on a coach tour of Europe.  You have to have time to chill out.

Estonia is a very interesting country, having like Helsinki, been passed around like a football between Sweden, Denmark and Russia and the country only achieved it's long desired independence in l993 when the Council of Europe voted Estonia as a full member.

We took the shuttle bus from the ship to the old town and wandered around at a leisurely pace meeting up with some of the dancers from The Headliners company.  The centre of the old town is very mediaeval and the Estonians play this up to the tourists.  We had a light lunch in a delightful old restaurant dimly lit by candles and attended by waiters and waitresses in mediaeval garb.  I learned later that only the walls were authentically mediaeval but what the Heck - as we sat there drinking mulled wine and eating 'Ye Olde Mediaeval Pate' it felt OK and was highly enjoyable. (The loos were fairly primitive too with an aroma to match!  They were quite fascinating and I wasn't the only one to take photos - not only the Ladies but the Gents too!  I'll put them into the Gallery when I am able to devote the time to uploading everything)  There was a Museum opposite the restaurant featuring Mediaeval Torture but I passed on that one - bad enough seeing it in films without paying to see it on a larger scale.

The Town boasts a superb Cathedral  - the Alexander Nevsky - Byzantine in style and out of keeping with the surrounding architecture with its Russian onion domes.  It is an Orthodox Church but only about 30% of the population practice this faith - the predominant one being Lutheran due to previous German influence.

Yet again there was no photography allowed inside the Cathedral.  Again I wouldn't have minded but the postcards on sale were a dire collection and I know I could have taken much better even without flash.  I have a superb Sony Camera (bought when I was engaged to take part in the BBC 2 series Safari School - and not allowed to use by the Game Rangers who said we were in potentially dangerous situations so cameras would be confiscated if rules were broken).  So the Camera was bought for taking photos of animals but has been used to good effect in other areas over the last three years and one of it's main attributes is taking very good photos in bad light.

I really enjoy cruising with my son Jonathan.  He's good company for all sorts of reasons but one of them is that he makes friends with the Dancers and Singers and when they go disco-ing after the shows, Mother goes too.  I love dancing but it's very difficult to find venues when one is older and especially if you don't have a partner.  However, one of the performers - the lovely James - took me in hand and has taught me to Salsa.  Oh, the joy of dancing with someone who knows what he is doing and he was so patient with me.  I know there are other parts of the country where they have Dance Schools which you can attend even without a partner and you are paired with professional dancers - often those in between jobs.  Unfortunately there's nothing like that down where I live near Deal in Kent.

When we boarded the Arcadia at Southampton, I ticked all sorts of activities and lectures I fully intended attending.  However as the Disco Evenings increased and the 'Go to Bed Time' got later and later, I didn't exactly get up with the larks.  But I was having a wonderful time so what did it matter.

At Sailaway this was the view of the lovely Tallinn Skyline.


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