It’s starting to get pretty cold here.
It’s nice – I prefer cold weather to the scary, baking temperatures I suffered through in Lyon this summer – but I really must get a coat soon, you know. It’s all very well having a scarf and a Silly Hat, but light summer jackets just aren’t going to be enough in a few weeks from now.
As I walked back from the supermarket tonight, rosy-cheeked from the cold air, I played my favourite game of pretending to be smoking a cigarette by bringing my hand to my mouth at intervals and then exhaling slowly, watching my breath form white clouds in front of me. It is not much of a game, I’ll agree, but it’s the sort of thing that gives a nicotine-deprived ex-smoker a very small feeling of pleasure with the memory. On a scale of one to ten, in terms of the satisfaction brought about by this activity, I’d say it was a three. No, a two. A three would be if I also had an unlit cigarette in my hand, just to aid the illusion/delusion.
Anyway, as I was walking along briskly, shivering underneath my light summer jacket and pulling my Silly Hat as far down around my ears as I could, I glanced casually at an approaching tram Then I had to stop and do a double take, for this was no ordinary tram, boys and girls! My first clue was the fact that all the windows had neat little curtains at them – sort of like the kind you’d get in a coach, only bigger, and tied back neatly and prettily. Confused, I stared at it. Trams do not normally have curtained windows. Then I realised that instead of the usual rows of seats with an aisle down the middle, there were large gaps in between the seats. A closer look as it rumbled past me revealed that this was due to the presence of tables. Tables! And then, as it passed under a streetlight, I saw the writing on the side of the tram: Kohvik-Tramm.
It is a café. On a tram. It is a tram that is a café. I cannot express how happy such a concept makes me. I looked enviously at all the people on the tram, sitting at the cosily-lit tables, drinking coffee and just trundling around Tallinn, watching the city all lit up at night. And there was me walking home in the cold like a sucker.
Excitedly, I raced home to google the kohvik-tramm. I am sad to report that it doesn’t seem to work like a normal café, in that you don’t appear to be able to just get on at any stop, have a coffee, and get off again when you feel like it. I suppose that would be unprofitable. Apparently, the kohvik-tramm is something of a celebrity in Tallinn, and has been for many years. Her name is Pauliine. Pauliine the café tram. And you can hire her out for an hour with a group of your friends for a silly amount of money, if I have deduced this information correctly from the Estonian-only articles on the subject.
Still. A café tram. Called Pauliine. Gotta love it.