Well the day started off well enough. In fact, the day was lovely, one would have said perfect, until we got to Vilnius, but I am getting ahead of myself. On second thought, I need to start at the end . We got to Vilnius, returned the car, took a cab to the hotel (all as planned in advance) got to the hotel, checked in, and started to change out of sweaty clothes and get organized prior to dinner with a researcher. Then the panic set in. I carry 3 small bags with electronics – plugs, adapters, chargers, cables, etc. The third bag was absolutely no where to be found. I ripped into all my various bags, searching in the nooks and crannies where important things decide to hide. Nowhere to be found. In this particular bag are two very important things, especially relevant to this blog and my daily recounting of our travels: the battery charger for my camera, and an sd card reader. I finally realized that I left them at the hotel in Kaunas. OK, we’ll be back there on Thursday, and I have an extra battery for the camera with me. The battery is good for about 500 photos. This means that I will not be taking many pictures in Vilnius until we finish here on Wednesday at the archive, because the main thing is to get pictures of the records. Lina emailed the hotel in Kaunas and they have the bag so I can get it on Thursday just before we go to the archive there – there is a fully charged battery in it. I also, however, can’t access the photos I took earlier today. If there is a funny side to this, it’s that last year when we stayed at the same hotel, Ola left a dress behind and had to get it shipped to her!
We visited three very different towns today: Dotnuva and Josvainaia in the Kėdainiai district, and the city of Kėdainiai. I will have to wait until I get the photos to describe what we did since when we visit more than one place, they usually blend together, as was the case of Dotnuva and Josvainaia.
Kėdainiai on the other hand is extremely distinctive – the town at one time had a synagogue complex with several buildings – most notably a summer synagogue and a winter synagogue on a small market square. Several streets away stood another synagogue in a row of attached buildings. The city has been beautifully restored and is a phenomenal treasure. I can’t wait to share the photos with you. Especially from the cemetery which has what I think is pretty distinctive. The stones of course are all in Hebrew, but rather than just Avraham b”r Yaakov, they say (not all but a substantial number) Avraham b”r Yaakov Feldshteyn ! Most of the stones with surnames, have the surnames easily distinguishable. The only dates I made out were in the 1920s – the other dates were in Hebrew and I need the photos to show you and also too remember the dates.
As I said, the city is pretty unique.
I had really hoped to update the following days as well but the internet connection is as slow as molasses (unusual at this hotel) and I’ll try again on Friday.