Dec 13, 2011

day 49 - Kaunas

Day 49
August 20th

Today we had an early wake up call. Following yesterday's impressive reception in front of the Municipality, we were to spend the whole morning inside. Gabriela, our coordinator from the University of Lodz, joined us for a cycling "holiday" after working hard to welcome us a couple of weeks ago.

The Academic Club of Political Scientists organized a discussion session at the Municipality, on the topic of European Citizenship, with distinguished lecturers - who had the chance to support our initiative by signing the Bike of Honour.

The session began with a few words of welcome from Ausra Rinkeviciute, Chair of the ACPS, and was moderated by Vytautas Isoda.
Andrius Svarplys, lecturer at VMU, spoke of European Identity in the European Union and explored the difference between federalist and nationalist views - and the conversation continued even after the end of the session.
Dziugas Dvarions, Associate Professor at VMU, gave a lecture on Social Economy, prompting an interesting discussion about the concept of Social Capital.
Egidijus Vareikis, former diplomat and Member of the Lithuanian Seimas (Parliament), presented us with a delightful reflection on pretty much every topic that our project touches.
Finally, Tomas Kavaliauskas, researcher and lecturer at VMU, approached the topic of Identity in the Baltic States, giving us a better idea of the things we would face later in our journey.

After this kind of intellectual stimulus, we were in need of a nice meal, so we visited the office of the VMU Student Council for lunch, and then got ready for the afternoon program, a visit to the IX Fort, a key historical landmark in Kaunas, witness to both Soviet and Nazi atrocities.

In the evening we had a goodbye party at the VMU guest house, one last chance to spend some time with all our hosts.

As a special treat, we took a front seat in the premiere of a short video made by our local filmmaker Lukas...

Ride for your rights! from VDUvideo on Vimeo.

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