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Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Back in Vilnius and Feeling Festive

Armed and ready for action

With all the posting I've been doing recently about our trip to Helsinki, Rovaniemi and Tallinn, it was easy to forget that we've been back in Vilnius for eleven days now (as I write this). I'm at work (well, at home after work), my daughter is in school and my wife is doing...whatever it is she does while we're at work and school. This past weekend saw the Kaziukas Craft Fair, the largest fair of its type in Vilnius. Held in honor of St. Casimir's Day on March 4, this year's edition began on Friday the 3rd at 9am and ended at 6pm on Sunday the 5th. Artisans from across Lithuania and neighboring countries set up in shop in 2000 outlets along Gediminas Prospektas and in Old Town. The festival evolved from the Casimir's processions that began in 1604; the first three-day fair was held in 1827. My family checked out the festivities on Saturday and Sunday afternoons. The following are some photos taken on both days...

Gediminas Prospektas on Saturday afternoon. It felt like all of Lithuania was gathered on that one stretch of street:

Amber insisted we purchase a jar of caramel spread. Parental resistance quickly crumbled after trying a sample:

Pounding a design onto a piece of metal:

A juggler entertains the crowd in front of the Lithuanian National Drama Theater and under the Three Muses:

Putting another skewer in the tractor:

Enjoying a chocolate-covered waffle:

A banner of St. Casimir hangs on the front of Vilnius Cathedral. Notice the two right hands:

St. Casimir's Chapel:

Trying out some medieval weaponry: 

Pilies gatvė:

"Hare Krishna Hare Rama":

Boar meat for sale:

St. Casimir's Church was surprisingly empty on St. Casimir's Day:

Entertaining the crowd in the front of the Town Hall:

The Three Crosses lit up at night:

Courtyard of the Palace of the Grand Dukes of Lithuania:

A trumpet player performs Dear Lithuania at 7:18pm on Saturday evening. This website explains why:

Sunday afternoon at the other end of Gediminas Prospektas: 

Shu-E buys some dill:

Finding shelter and liquid comfort from the rain:

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