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Last Spring, I dove deep into Latvian culture by collecting my own herbal tea. On Midsummer night, I dutifully sat by a camp fire and sang Ligo songs. Now, it is almost Autumn, and I have one more hurdle to jump in order complete my full integration into Latvian culture: mushroom picking!
Apparently, Latvians like to spend their late-summer weekends the forest, foraging for their dinner. They even have special verbs for these hobbies: ...
... I crossed the border, and I'm pretty sure I was about to be randomly selected by the Latvian not-so-secret police for a random license check or roadworthy, but I pulled over just before them to take a photo of the sign indicating I was in Latvia. As I did so, they waved someone else over, and they were busy dealing with them as I pulled back out onto the road and quietly passed them. I visited Rundale Palace, which is a famous Baroque building, and sits on a gorgeous ...
... design)) or given names. It took me a while before I realized that Als Gors and Džordž Kluni were not famous Latvians, but rather Al Gore and George Clooney.
My own lovely first name, which my parents spent nine months coming up with, in a spelling (y, not ie!!) that I've spent 28 years defending, was promptly changed to Jani when I arrived in Latvia. Brrrr!
The Six Declensions
The third problem in the Name Game is grammar.
... highlighted was a couple of plants that were exhibited in museums in Riga and Tallinn that had speakers attached to them. People from all over the world could write messages that were later spoken to the flower. "To grow or not to grow. That is the question" or "I love you plant. How are you?" were actually projected to the flower and they were apparently supposed to grow faster. I thought it was a ...
... went for naught.
Guilds were different for married merchants. But these were also owned and run by German merchants who had quite favorable laws to help them with trading and making even more money. One Latvian merchant who had amassed a goodly amount of money for himself went to the German married guild and asked to be a part of it but the ...