We spent two days in St. Petersburg, but I did not even get off the ship. I slept through my morning excursion (because we had changed two time zones in two days, at least that's what I am going to blame it on) and then I was stuck on the boat because we could only disembark if we were on "official" tours. Also the stories from the excursions were not so great, because of the rainy windy weather, and the tours were very rushed. So I hung out, knitted, and I booked a massage, which was very nice. So much for St. Petersburg.
Then yesterday Helsinki! Helsinki is a very nice big city - a big nice esplanade with flowers, statues, grass, and ample shopping on either side. The big draw was the open air market, where a local lady was selling Finn wool yarn, fiber, and also hand dyed mitten kits! I bought one of those. Also some really pretty amber earrings. Nice to just walk around.
Today was Talinn, which is probably our best stop. Nice very walkable old town. Lots and lots of handcrafts - linen, wool sweaters, mittens, knitted shawls, amber jewelry - very nice things. The city is very pretty - old buildings painted beautiful pastel colors. There were two big green dragon gargoyles on the big church in the town square. A few of us had lunch in one of the open air cafes, and the waiter was a tad grumpy - even though we were so cute and friendly! Maybe that's just the Estonian style! Anyway, most of us made a pretty big haul - I got an inexpensive matrushka doll, a Haapsalu knitted shawl, some orange/black mittens, umm... a linen table runner, and an amber egg. I sure hope I can get all this stuff back in the duffel bag to get home.
Tomorrow is coastal Sweden, small town, which should be nice to walk around as well. That is our last stop, then two days at sea, and then disembark in Amsterdam. I have been working diligently on my Orenburg lace scarf project for our on-board classes.
Sorry for no pictures but the connection is so bad it is all I can do to post this! Pictures to follow when I get a good connection.