Thursday, September 15, 2005

A village life for me

For the greater part of my life I lived in a small village in the UK, and I was born in brought up in a town in Scotland where the population was less than 1500 - so it is with a great deal of amazement, that I enjoy living in a city - Riga. OK it is not the biggest city in the world, but in reality it is just a big village.

From my apartment to our offices is 1o minutes, and to get into the Old city, again 10-15 minutes. No matter where you go you can guarantee you will meet someone you know, and just like a village everybody seems to know everything about everyone else.

The great thing about village life, is of course that it has a centre, usually the local pub, and at for me and many others ( both local and so called expats) so it so in Riga.

When I first came here in 1996, it was Paddy Whelans - a so called Irish bar, owned by an Australian, who subsequently got arrested for exporting Antiques ( that's another story). Then we migrated to a so called British pub - Dickens - owned by Russians - but with British beer. It sufferered a memory lapse a few years ago, when it it changed its name to "Elkor", when it was bought out by a large Electrical company called - Guess ! God only knows why, but it did not take long before it changed its name back to Dickens. Who in gods name ever wanted to say "Meet you at ELKOR".

But in recent times we have moved onto another location called .................. ( Do you really think I am going to give the name, and encourage even more "cretins". Suffice to say it is run by real Irishman - well from Cork - but as he hangs a Cork republican flag up in the pub, maybe it has declared independence from Ireland.

He is the only barman I have ever met you needs to stand on a stool, if you ask for a whiskey. I am not saying he is small, just not fully developed in the vertical direction.

So albeit that our little community has changed over the years, we have for the moment now settled into ................ as our community centre.

Like every village all over the world, this community has its characters, and in this case from all over the world. To protect the innocent I will not reveal there names ( can you get sued for publishing a blog ?)

Anyhow here is but a few

S......... - Ukranian - barman at .................... - loves playing crap music to piss the off the regulars
S......... - Welsh - A sports fanatic ( Well rugby and cricket) - Is often referred to as Tom Sellick ( God only knows why - as he looks nothing like him)
M....... - Italian - Suffers from verbal diarrhea, and does not like getting his hair touched
T........ - English - Came to Riga to find a woman - suffers from personality disorder - still looking for a woman
N.......- New Zealand - Came to Riga to find a good woman - found a brilliant one, now happily married, and back in New Zealand. Beer sales suffered dramatically when he left.
P......... - English - Another sports fanatic ( Horses, rugby and cricket) - Brought his dog over from UK, first week it nearly died - but is now fed on Steak and bottled water (with ice).
I......... - Latvian - Brilliant bar-person, can read minds - (I never have to ask for a beer - how does she know ?)
F........ - Australian - runs the best hostel in Riga, and can actually finish a portion of The Irish Stew

This is but a selection of the characters that I share my life with, and for those of you remember the TV series "Cheers" - well I think we could have the makings of a remake at .......................... ( I know you are dying for me to tell you the name - so I will give you a clue, It is 15 minutes from my office in Brivibas iela, and approximately 3 hours 30 minutes from Heathrow/Gatwick/Stanstead airports


Anonymous Rob said...

Not even a mention of me? disappointing!!

11:02 am  
Anonymous Sergei said...

It`s all computer! ...random...

3:40 am  
Blogger Linguist-in-Waiting said...

Just saying hell after being washed on to your blog by the NEXT button. I'm glad you like Riga. Have you experienced culture shock when you first came there?

I myself have just moved to a new country. I just arrived here in Buffalo, NY a month ago, and is still in the process of getting settled.


7:02 am  
Blogger Linguist-in-Waiting said...

Oops, a typo.

"Just saying *hello*

7:03 am  
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7:34 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would just like to thatit`s I am vertically impaired its just that the f*****g shelves are too high,and I totaly agree with you on the crap music by the snuff sucking barman,

See u Later

2:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can`t spell either

2:03 pm  

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