– It´s snowing! It´s snowing! Come on PedroL, it´s snowing! – woke me up A. this monday morning. I met my girlfriend in the kitchen and suddenly I felt like I was still dreaming: outside, snowflakes were harmoniously floating like ballerinas dancing.
Staring at the window, me and A. were openmouthed looking the street. – It looks like there was a pillow war between gods in the sky of Riga! – I said.
It was so surreal, that my eyes blinked a dozen times trying to develop all those unusual images-in-movement for me.
Proabably I will sound like an alien, but the first time I saw snow I was 26 years old. (That´s true!) In Portugal, snow is common in the interior, a few days every year. In Lisbon, however, it is such a ‘rare phenomenon’ that 1 milimeter of ice turns into a snowball of news.
Because I always wanted to see snow, in 2007 I flew to Finland [photo essay here]. In february, to be succesful. And I made it: in Helsinki the snow was dirty and, to be honest, I didn´t have the best impression. Then I went to Tampere and realize it´s beauty. In Rovaniemi, in turn, those minus 20 degrees almost froze me.
In Riga, so far, I feel confortable. This cold is (still) ok for rambling. In the afternoon of this monday, me and A. went to the city center. For some time, we walked around the beautiful Bastejkalns park. As usual, many ducks wandering: some inside the city canal, while others playing hide and seek helped by the trees and the statues. Me and A. realized this park has truly interesting statues: an ex-mayor with his wife and dog; a naked lady; a kid; etc..
In front of the sculpture of the ballet dancers, I stopped for some time and found myself reflecting how a statue is the perfect metaphor for winter: as a statue conserves the figure of someone in a specific action, these ballerinas are in an eternal dance because they are frozen. And the snow has just begun.
‘Rigas Diena’ is a collection of 16 chronicles about my experience of living 9 months in Riga. Download it for free in a pdf that also includes a guide to make you get the best of the latvian capital.
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