The last few days of my adventure in Lithuania have been pretty quiet - mostly just me working at the BnB. Here are some photos from my daily walkabouts. Check the captions for more info.
Having had a productive week and gotten a lot accomplished (and also having not spent much money through the week), I decided to go get another good dinner. Thanks again to the Lonely Planet website, I found there were a lot of higher-end restaurants in Vilnius, so I decided to give another one a shot. I discovered (and booked a dinner at) Sweet Root, in the Užupio Republic district. The dinner was stunning - easy and uncomplicated, yet very refined and delicious!
With the forthcoming trip to San Antonio for TMEA coming up soon, I've been spending a lot more time hunkered down and cranking out the work to get ready. I've kind of settled into a routine of getting up, having breakfast, going for a walk, then getting back to the BnB to get to work, putting in long hours.
From the past couple days, not a lot of new and exciting things to talk about, but here are some of the highlights...
Wanting to get some authentic Lithuanian chow, I headed over to Senoji trobelė based on a recommendation from The Lonely Planet website. The Lonely Planet and Senoji trobelė's websites both recommended reservations for a meal, but for the time of day I was headed there, I was going to take a chance. Fortunately it was pretty quiet, so I was in luck.
Unlike the other day's six-course tasting menu with all the bells and whistles, this was a pretty simple meal.
Despite waking up to a Wintry Mix this morning, I was determined to get out of the BnB, go for a bit of a walk, and see some more of the city. As the morning turned to afternoon, the weather turned from a mix to just snow, which looked picturesque outside the window - so, I got cleaned up, put my layers on, and trekked outside.
My first destination was lunch. I found a "What do to in Vilnius" post on lonelyplanet.com, and on that page, it recommended a restaurant called Senoji Trobelė (which translates to "The Old Hut"). The place serves traditional Lithuanian cuisine, so I was all about checking it out - and it was delicious (of course, you should know by now that food blogs are posted separately).
Hello, blog fans.
I haven't posted much for a couple days - pretty much because not a lot has transpired this week so far.
The biggest thing - my thought that I beat jet lag after my 12-hour sleep the other day - nope. I've pretty much been sleeping for about two hours, then away for three or four (or more), then sleeping a few more hours. So, combining not really waking up until 11:00, along with cold/wet weather, and getting work done (after all, this is a work trip), I haven't really done a lot of traveling, exploring, or anything of much interest. The most excitement I've had is a couple trips to the grocery store. The good news is, I'm growing less afraid of grocery shopping.
Following my epically delicious dinner Saturday night, I came back to my BnB, put up my blog posts, then went to bed.
And 12 hours later, I woke up Sunday afternoon
This is the first continuous night of sleep I've had in a few days, and it felt marvelous. [Spoiler alert: as I write this on Monday morning, I ended up getting very little sleep last night]
So my Sunday afternoon was spent working on plans for post-Vilnius - what's next after I leave Lithuania. I'll be here until February 10, then a short flight back over to Moscow, overnight stay in a hotel at the airport, then my next flight to... TEXAS! Musescore will be at TMEA and I'm thrilled that I get to go along. Following TMEA, I'll be heading back to Russia and spending some time in Saint Petersburg before I'll eventually end up back home in South Carolina.
After finalizing these plans, my next stop was to head over the Lithuanian Academy of Theatre and Music (the National Conservatory), where I was invited to check out a Brass Band rehearsal. The walk over to that side of town was great, and I stumbled across a park with a public, outdoor ice skating rink set up.
I came across a Lonely Planet post about things to do in Vilnius and came across the name of a restaurant a few blocks from my BnB - Ertlio Namas. I looked it up and was very intrigued by the concept of the current tasting menu offered by the chef: the history of Lithuania, as told by food. The courses featured were based on what agricultural and game products would have been available in the country and why one things was preferable over another. It was a great way to set up the dinner and ended up with some fantastic courses. I chose the six-course tasting menu (and, of course, the wine pairing).
So, continuing my epic battle against Jet Lag... I'm still on the losing side. After another late start to the day, I went out exploring, heading into a new direction. I thought I had a long walk ahead of me, but ended up actually very close by - which is great, because it meant I could check out more things than I thought was possible.
My walk today took me to the north/northeast from where my BnB is. I walked past Vilnius University (though did not explore too deeply), and then saw the Lithuanian Presidential Palace:
So I think the last couple days were a combination of being energized by being in a new place and consciousness largely fueled by coffee. After having a day or two in one place and far calmer than the previous, my body finally succumbed to the jet lag of being 7 hours off my normal timezone.
So last night, I went to bed at 11:00pm, then was wide awake from 1:00am on - I didn't get back to sleep until about 7:00am (by the way, the docuseries "Pandemic" on Netflix is great).
After sleeping until about 10:30, I dragged myself out of bed, made some coffee, eggs, and bacon (btw, brown eggs taste the same as white eggs, despite being less than half the price), then took a short walk around the neighborhood.