"Anthony, I have a feeling we are in civilization or these people look and act a lot like us. Thus, familiarity breeds the belief that we are in civilization"
So we got to Tallinn around 8:00 am. Once we got oriented, we realized that the old town district was just across the road from the train station. After wondering around the old town district with mouths agape, we located a hostel in the old town District for about $19/night/person. The Vana Tom hostel is slightly off of one of the main streets through old town district. It is clean and well managed. The staff were extremely helpful and not once did they try to pressure us into some tour. It was extremely refreshing.
The old town district is exactly that. It was like stepping back into some medieval time. The architecture was amazing and the Estonians have taken great care to preserve this amazing heritage. I highly reccommend going to Tallinn. It is a bit pricey but not overly expensive but you have a poorly paid professor stating this and it may well be inexpensive by someone else's standard.
Outside of old town are other places to see as well. We went to the ruins of the St. Bernadette convent. That was very cool and I got several pic's of the place. This place is in Pritta (sp?) which is easily gotten to by public transport and is a suburb of Tallinn. The beach is directly across the main road from the convent ruins and is a must just so you can say that you swam in the Baltic.
The following day we took a ferry to the island of Aegna. It is a 1 hour trip and costs about $9.50US/person. Finding the ferry line was a huge ordeal but eventually we located it (Lindaline). The island was a military installment during the Russian occupation but has since been turned into a nature preserve. The hiking is great and there are tons of beatiful wildflowers, birds and a few moose. Yes, moose! We were walking this trial and Anthony was ahead of me when he turned to me with a very strange look. He then quietly told me to stay near the treeline because there were 4 moose in a feild in front of him. Sure enough......and I have pictures to prove it. We arrived at 10 am and caught the ferry back at 6 pm. You can camp on the island, as well. There are some really nice campsites and firewood is provided.
In a nutshell, Tallinn was brillant and the Estonian people are extremely freindly and helpful. Most everyone younger than 40 has a working knowledge of English thus getting around is very easy.
Hope all is well and we are currently in Riga, Latvia.