In a scene reminiscent of the Titanic, I had the cheapest ticket for a shared 4-bunk compartment in third-class, which was the lowest level of all, even below the cars. The other 3 compartment-mates were Latvian older ladies, who eyed me suspiciously as I greeted them. This was a harbinger of the wariness of strangers I would encounter throughout the old Soviet bloc.
Some of the best sleeps in my life have been aboard ships and boats. The rhythmic pounding of the waves, the knowledge that I am on a tin can in the middle of a vast body of water, should make me nervous, but instead I find this calming. Perhaps a relationship with him who stills the winds and the waves (Mark 4:41) is the reason.
The grocery shop onboard the ship sold cans of boar meat and pate and bear meat. Prudence won rabid curiousity – I already had a full load on my back.
Part of that load, happily, were sausages of reindeer and moose.