Theme Week Latvia – Jūrmala

27 May 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  9 minutes

Jomas Street © Raul Cortez999/cc-by-sa-4.0

Jomas Street © Raul Cortez999/cc-by-sa-4.0

Jūrmala (Latvian: “seaside”) is a city in Latvia, about 25 kilometres (16 miles) west of Riga. Jūrmala is a resort town stretching 32 km (20 miles) and sandwiched between the Gulf of Riga and the Lielupe River. It has a 33 km (21 miles) stretch of white-sand beach, and a population of 49,325 in 2019, making it the fifth-largest city in Latvia. While Latvia was part of the Soviet Union, Jūrmala was a favorite holiday-resort and tourist destination for high-level Communist Party officials, particularly Leonid Brezhnev and Nikita Khrushchev. Although many amenities such as beach-houses and concrete hotels remain, some have fallen into disrepair. Jūrmala remains a tourist attraction with long beaches facing the Gulf of Riga and romantic wooden houses in the Art Nouveau style.   read more…

East Hampton in New York

27 May 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  12 minutes

Montauk Manor hotel © Beyond My Ken/cc-by-sa-4.0

Montauk Manor hotel © Beyond My Ken/cc-by-sa-4.0

The Town of East Hampton is located in southeastern Suffolk County, New York, United States, at the eastern end of the South Shore of Long Island. It is the easternmost town in the state of New York. At the time of the 2020 United States Census, it had a total population of 28,385. The town includes the village of East Hampton, as well as the hamlets of Montauk, Amagansett, Wainscott, and Springs. It also includes part of the incorporated village of Sag Harbor.   read more…

Theme Week Latvia – Rēzekne

26 May 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  14 minutes

Creative Centre Zeimuls © panoramio.com - Sirujs Enobs/cc-by-sa-3.0

Creative Centre Zeimuls © panoramio.com – Sirujs Enobs/cc-by-sa-3.0

Rēzekne is a city in the Rēzekne River valley in Latgale region of eastern Latvia. It is called The Heart of Latgale. Built on seven hills, Rēzekne is situated 242 kilometres (150 miles) east of Riga, and 63 kilometres (39 miles) west of the Latvian-Russian border, at the intersection of the Moscow – Ventspils and Warsaw – Saint Petersburg Railways. It has a population of 31,216 (2016) making it the 7th largest city in Latvia. Rēzekne was rebuilt after the war with an emphasis on industrial development. Rēzekne had the 5th highest industrial output in the Latvian SSR, including a dairy processor (Rēzeknes Piena konservu kombināts), a lumber mill, and an electric-instrument factory (Rebir). During this time, many Russians moved to the city, making up a large part of the population (48.5% in 2007).   read more…

Grimsby in Lincolnshire

26 May 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  21 minutes

Town Hall © geograph.org.uk - Stephen Richards/cc-by-sa-2.0

Town Hall © geograph.org.uk – Stephen Richards/cc-by-sa-2.0

Grimsby, also Great Grimsby, is a port town and the administrative centre of North East Lincolnshire, England, on the south bank of the Humber Estuary close to the North Sea. It was the home port for the world’s largest fishing fleet by the mid-20th century, but fishing then fell sharply. The Cod Wars denied UK access to Icelandic fishing grounds and the European Union used its Common Fisheries Policy to parcel out fishing quotas to other European countries in waters within 200-nautical-mile (370 km) of the UK coast. Grimsby has since suffered post-industrial decline, but food production has risen since the 1990s. The Grimsby–Cleethorpes conurbation acts as a cultural and economic centre for much of north and east Lincolnshire. Grimsby people are called Grimbarians; the term codhead is also used jokingly, often for football supporters. Great Grimsby Day is 22 January. Grimsby is also the second largest settlement by population in Lincolnshire after Lincoln, with Scunthorpe being the third largest. The main sectors of the economy are ports and logistics, food processing, specifically frozen foods and fish processing, chemicals and process industries and digital media. Cleethorpes to the east has a tourist industry. To the west along the Humber bank to Immingham there has been large-scale industrial activity since the 1950s, around chemicals and from the 1990s gas-powered electricity generation.   read more…

Theme Week Latvia – Tukums

25 May 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  8 minutes

Durbe Manor © panoramio.com - Igors Jefimovs/cc-by-3.0

Durbe Manor © panoramio.com – Igors Jefimovs/cc-by-3.0

Tukums is a town in the Courland region of Latvia. Three regions of Latvia meet in the vicinity of Tukums – Vidzeme, Zemgale and Courland. The historical center of Tukums developed between trade routes leading from the mouth of the Daugava River to Prussia. The oldest part is today’s Talsi Street that originated at the river named Zvirgzdupite where there used to be a castle mound with a wooden castle. Since 1253 Tukums was ruled by the Livonian Order.   read more…

Portrait: Ludwig von Mises, Austrian School economist, historian, logician, and sociologist

25 May 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Portrait Reading Time:  21 minutes

© Krapulat/cc-by-sa-4.0

© Krapulat/cc-by-sa-4.0

Ludwig Heinrich Edler von Mises was an Austrian School economist, historian, logician, and sociologist. Mises wrote and lectured extensively on the societal contributions of classical liberalism. He is best known for his work on praxeology studies comparing communism and capitalism. He is considered one of the most influential economic and political thinkers of the 20th century. Mises emigrated from Austria to the United States in 1940. Since the mid-20th century, libertarian movements have been strongly influenced by Mises’s writings. Mises’ student Friedrich Hayek viewed Mises as one of the major figures in the revival of classical liberalism in the post-war era. Hayek’s work “The Transmission of the Ideals of Freedom” (1951) pays high tribute to the influence of Mises in the 20th century libertarian movement. Mises’s Private Seminar was a leading group of economists. Many of its alumni, including Friedrich Hayek and Oskar Morgenstern, emigrated from Austria to the United States and Great Britain. Mises has been described as having approximately seventy close students in Austria.   read more…

Theme Week Latvia – Ventspils

24 May 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  11 minutes

Ventspils Lighthouse © Algirdas/cc-by-sa-3.0

Ventspils Lighthouse © Algirdas/cc-by-sa-3.0

Ventspils is a city in northwestern Latvia in the historical Courland region of Latvia, and is the sixth largest city in the country. At the beginning of 2020, Ventspils had a population of 33,906. It is situated on the Venta River and the Baltic Sea, and has an ice-free port. The city’s name literally means “castle on the Venta”, referring to the Livonian Order’s castle built alongside the Venta River.   read more…

Nieuwpoort in West Flanders

24 May 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, UNESCO World Heritage Reading Time:  9 minutes

Nieuwpoort on Yser river © Marc Ryckaert/cc-by-3.0

Nieuwpoort on Yser river © Marc Ryckaert/cc-by-3.0

Nieuwpoort is a municipality located in Flanders, one of the three regions of Belgium, and in the Flemish province of West Flanders. The municipality comprises the city of Nieuwpoort proper and the towns of Ramskapelle and Sint-Joris. On 1 January 2008 Nieuwpoort had a total population of 11,062. The total area is 31.00 km² which gives a population density of 350 inhabitants per km². In Nieuwpoort, the Yser flows into the North Sea. It is also the home of a statue created by Jan Fabre called Searching for Utopia. The Stadshalle Grain Hall (market hall) with its belfry was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1999 as part of the Belfries of Belgium and France site, owing to its historical civic (not religious) importance and its architecture.   read more…

Theme Week Latvia

23 May 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Theme Weeks, UNESCO World Heritage Reading Time:  10 minutes

Historic centre of Riga, an UNESCO World Heritage Site © Diego Delso/cc-by-sa-3.0

Historic centre of Riga, an UNESCO World Heritage Site © Diego Delso/cc-by-sa-3.0

Latvia, officially the Republic of Latvia, is a country in the Baltic region of Northern Europe. It is one of the Baltic states; and is bordered by Estonia to the north, Lithuania to the south, Russia to the east, Belarus to the southeast, and shares a maritime border with Sweden to the west. Latvia covers an area of 64,589 km² (24,938 sq mi), with a population of 1.9 million. The country has a temperate seasonal climate. Its capital and largest city is Riga. Latvians belong to the ethno-linguistic group of the Balts; and speak Latvian, one of the only two surviving Baltic languages. Russians are the most prominent minority in the country, at almost a quarter of the population.   read more…

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