The night had been cold and damp, but I slept well in the cottage.
The morning is very nice, blue skies and sunny, but the winds are cold.
I pack up and get going, along the road I find a supermarket and stock up on the basics.
After a while I arrive in Viesīte, it’s a bit rough and run down. There is a sort of a museum with a tourist information. It looks closed and I am about to leave when I see someone moving inside. There is a music festival of some sorts going on somewhere nearby and accommodation is sparser than normal. But the staff is very helpful and calls around and manage to find a room.
Due to the music festival there is only one room available, and it’s a 8 bed dormitory but it seems like I can have the whole room for myself. It will cost me 13 Euro including tax.
I am skeptical but I have my tent as backup.
After a short bike trip I arrive in downtown Lone. It’s a sight I will never forget, it’s like there has been several UFO landings nearby and there is a alien conference going on. But it turns out it’s the Latvian pagan metal festival "Zobens un Lemess" happening. The actual epicenter is a bit outside Lone by a lake, but the place where I am staying is the only place selling beer and food nearby.
There is a constant flow of pagan metal people walking up from the lake to get some refill of liquids and solids. Leather jackets and kilt seems to be a very popular fashion statement in the pagan metal circles.
Victor himself greets me and I get the grand tour of the complex, as I don’t speak Russian most of the information given is lost.
After finding someone that speaks English I get my room and I ask several times if the 13 Euro is for the whole room and it is. Victor tells me there is normally real hotel rooms free but now the stars from the festival is staying there.
The room and facilities are at 13 Euro level and that is fair enough, the "SPA" stinks of sulfur, the smell is so strong it burns the nose. It’s unclear if this was intended or if there had been some chemical mishap. I skipped the pool and joined the pagan metal crowd in the bar/restaurant. Thanks to the festival there was a buffet style dinner served.
The supermarket can’t keep up with the beer buying festival goers, there is a shortage of cold beer. But the pagans doesn’t seem to mind lukewarm beer and vodka.
Normal closing hours are about 20:00, but giving the great bizznizz Victor keeps the place open until 2 or 3 the next morning.
It would be great to go back to Lone one day to see the contrast, I guess it’s a completely different experience when the pagans aren’t around.