Rainy ride to Rapla

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What we didn’t know until late this morning is that 20 August is Day of Restoration of Independence, celebrating the dramatic events of 1991. Tallinn was quiet but the shopping centres were open. We began to suspect something when we saw many houses with wet Estonian flags flying limply as it was drizzling with rain.

At Freedom Square in Tallinn there was an outdoor exhibition of photos from turbulent times in the 20th century when the Baltic states were under Soviet and then German occupation.

We had just seen a large number of Estonian soldiers chanting as they marched along the footpath near the city centre – not sure where they were going.

On the edge of Tallinn, heading south, we came across a sign commemorating the Baltic Way, when people from the three Baltic countries formed a human chain on 23 August 1989 to express solidarity against their loss of independence in 1939.

After this we slogged it out with continuous rain and drizzle through forests, farms and unremarkable towns.

The last 15km along the main road inspired us to investigate the train as there was a station was nearby, but a 50 minute wait wasn’t worth it so we rode on.

Rapla is a small town that has a large church with two steeples, a nice guesthouse where we are accommodated along with a number of other wet cyclists, and a cosy pub that serves good Estonian fish soup and schnitzels.

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