Family trip to Palanga in May of 2004
One of the things we did with the family during my first return to Lithuania in 10 years, was to visit the Baltic sea coast and some towns that are popular local vacation destinations. Such as Palanga.
S and I in May 2004 in Palanga (Lithuania). We are trying to “warm” ourselves up to an idea of a walk on the beach. Don’t even think of going for a romantic beach walk on a mid-May evening in Lithuania unless you are bundled up in your winter clothes… and we didn’t bring any of those.
We are eating at a country-style restaurant/theme park near Palanga (Lithuania). Lithuanian country cooking is, not surprisingly, different from American, a world unto itself. In addition to a range of potato dishes — from potato pie to potato sausage — you’ll find such, umm, unusual delicacies as pig’s ears and feet. Not even the majority of Lithuanians like them, but my mom and I are crazy about them. For the first time in 10 years I got to indulge my taste in pig’s extremities, to S’s great horror. 🙂 This restaurant had a smoked left pig’s ear on the menu. Yes, [i]left[/i] pig’s ear. Don’t ask me what they did with the right one. Perhaps they served it to people at the opposite side of the room. From left, clockwise: my brother J, my mom and dad, me, S and my sister M.
Mom and dad at a country-style restaurant in Palanga in May of 2004
One of the attractions in the theme park was a trampoline that you could jump on while suspended on long rubber ropes. The funny thing is, before you got up there, you had to tell the trampoline operator your exact weight, because he had to adjust the tension of the ropes according to your weight: too little tension and you won’t be able to jump high, too much, and you won’t be able to land. Predictably, both my mother and I underestimated our weight, and as a result were unable to jump very high. The whole weight thing was kind of comical, given the accuracy that was required. It wasn’t enough to estimate your weight to the nearest couple of kilos, like I tried. Seeing that I was unsure, the technician asked: “Are you thin?” (Either he was being polite, or he couldn’t see very well under my bundle of clothes.) Taken aback, I mumbled, “umm… uh… it’s a matter of opinion.” Then he gave me a couple of squeezes around the waist, apparently trying to estimate my body fat percentage. Well, I guess the estimation didn’t work very well.
P, on the other hand, was doing somersaults on the trampoline!
Mom doing somersaults on a trampoline
Mom really enjoyed bouncing.
Even the onlookers could tell Mom was having fun.
My sister M with nephew J on a wooden horse.
at a theme park near Palanga
We spent the Saturday night in Palanga in a little bar in Palanga called Ramybe (Serenity). It had a reputation for being a beloved hangout for intellectuals. This was, however, the one and only place in Lithuania I heard playing American country music. It was Dixie Chicks, and none of my family had heard about them. To be fair, it was only a small part of the owner’s rather eclectic playlist. My sister said his taste in music was very different from what you would hear in a typical bar or restaurant — in a good way — and so I noticed. The Dixie Chicks may have been an unfortunate exception. From left, clockwise: my brother J, my sister M, S, myself, my mom, and my brother’s son J
dscf2716 The owner of the Ramybė (Serenity) bar (left) is taking our orders. He’ll make a drink for you based on what he sees in your face. Seriously.
My sister M in Palanga (Lithuania) in May of 2004.
Cat Cenas, who lived in my parents’ vacation home in Palanga at the time. His eyes appear bicolor this picture, but they really are not, it’s just a flash effect.
Cat Cenas, who lived in my parents’ vacation home in Palanga at the time, is looking out the window into the yard.