I will remember the time we crossed the Daugava river via Akmens tilts bridge from Riga’s town hall square to the national library as a quality bonding time between me and cousin Wawi. These are moments are rare, and I cherish those.
We left aunt and Tuwa at the steps of the Museum of the Occupation of Latvia. While Marcus walked ahead of us, in search of a good photo object.
Besides talking about anything under the sun, from make-up to martial arts. There were also moments of silence, when we just breathed in the sea breeze, enjoyed the view of the old town and simply walked together. Then talked again, selfies here and there. It was really fun.
And I do feel proud walking with my lovely and intelligent cousin. Did I mention that she is a doctor? She is a pediatrician and also specializes in the heart. She has done heart surgeries, if my memory serves me right. And she gets interviewed by Philippine media when it comes to her specialized topics.
It’s a gift to have seen Riga, the largest and most cosmopolitan city in the Baltic states, with my Filipino family.
Now here’s something for me to remember about Riga (besides the fact that the city is famous because of its many art noveau buildings):
- Riga was inhabited by tribes that traded with Russians and Scandinavians before 1200
- Riga became a German settlement. It was even a member of the Hanseatic league of trading cities from 1200’s.
- Sweden ruled it 1621-1710. (As if I will remember these dates!)
- Riga under Russian control in the 19th century.
- Riga suffered during the world wars.
- Latvia was liberated by the Soviet army in 1944.
- Latvia was under communist rule from 1944 until Latvia’s independence in 1991.
- There are still more ethnic Russians than Latvians in Riga. The relations between Russians and Latvians are said to be cold. I have a Latvian friend (she was born in Latvia) whose parents are Russians – but I haven’t dared asked her that question.My friends, this is my last blog entry about Latvia…Soon I will be blogging about one of my favorite European cities, Tallinn.PS Tuwa, one day, if you look at these pics, you will see that my cousin – your Tita Doc – and I have have similar facial features. 🙂