Friday, 12 July 2013

Day 3- Riga

Today we were travelling from Liepaja to Riga to stay there for the night. As we were travelling on the team bus which was due to leave the team hotel at 8.15am, me and Dad had a 7am wake up call to give us time to get breakfast and get a taxi over to the other hotel. Again, not sure whether it was the lack of sleep or the alcohol consumption (probably a mixture of both), but let's just say I've felt better. I woke up to find a huge bruise on my arm- my best guess for how this was produced was during the celebrations at the game the night before (photo evidence shows it definitely wasn't there before the game). I managed to eat some toast for breakfast then we headed over the team hotel. I was mildly amused how our female taxi driver was wearing 5 inch wedge heels to drive a taxi at 7.45am!

Upon arrival at the team hotel, we were greeted with a fun sight. People just coming in in last night's clothes, falling down the stairs, and generally talking rubbish. Fair to say they celebrated hard! The bus was late departing and coupled with a slightly dodgy driver, it was quite a nervy trip to get us to the airport on time! Some people played the 'keep drinking to avoid a hangover' game, whereas some others tried to sleep the effects of the celebrations off. I felt sorry for those who had to do media interviews during all the craziness that was the coach trip! I must have been in a delirious state because I found it hilarious how the coach driver didn't understand our requests for a toilet stop, but did understand the phrase 'piss-stop'. Thankfully, the team made it to the airport just in time for their lunchtime flight back to the UK. Life lesson #1 of the trip- it is a much more enjoyable experience to travel when non-hungover :P          

There were only 3 of us on the bus that were staying in Riga that night, so we got a taxi to our various hotels. Again, me and dad were the only 2 not staying in the same hotel as everyone else. Our room wasn't quite ready so we left our luggage at the hotel and went to find somewhere to eat. We found a little cafe, but after standing around for 10 minutes and the waitress not seating/serving us, we walked out and found another little local cafe. We ended up ordering 3 main meals between the 2 of us because we weren't totally sure what the English translation of the menu was, but Dad ended up with a cheese and ham toastie, we shared a plate of chips and I had something which is probably best described as mozzarella dippers. We shared a dessert- a huge plate of ice cream covered in chocolate sauce and various fruits. All of this plus a drink each cost us just a little over £10! 

I think we were both feeling a little delirious at this point so we headed back to the hotel as our room was now ready (Dad would make conversation with me, I'd listen but wouldn't reply because my brain just wasn't processing information). Almost as soon as we got to our room and put the suitcase down, we were both asleep! Dad was woken up by a phone call from the other group of fans who had travelled to Riga a little later in the day. We also had an amusing photo sent from home- the rabbit had eaten all of Dad's paperwork that he had bought home from work!

After a nap, I actually felt human again so we decided to go for a walk and explore Riga. Again, it was a Dad and I special, not following any maps, just our general sense of direction. We stopped off for ice cream and explored a few shops before finding the Old Town. To our surprise, we found the main group of fans just ordering drinks in an outdoor bar so we decided to join them (I was the classy one drinking wine). Because of how large the group was, orders took forever to arrive so we decided to go for tea in separate groups. Me and Dad went with the group that experienced the Latvian delicacy known as TGI Friday's. I've never even had TGI's in the UK or USA so it was a little odd experiencing it in Latvia. The food portions were huge and I don't think one single person actually finished their meal. Everyone was feeling the effects of the previous two days so we said our goodbyes to each other and all headed back off to our respective hotels. Me and Dad decided to walk off the food so went home via the park and then tried to get an early night. Even though I was so tired, a mixture of the light refusing to turn off and having the afternoon nap meant I didn't sleep as well as I had wanted to. Oh well, back to the UK tomorrow!

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