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An Estonian Vodka Bottle - The photo may be mediocre,  but it's a fun  and interesting story, so please read on. | by Romair
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An Estonian Vodka Bottle - The photo may be mediocre, but it's a fun and interesting story, so please read on.

This vodka bottle has quite a history. When little 6-year old Mairi (now my wife Sammy) and her brother and parents were frantically racing across war torn Europe in 1940 at the very beginning of World War II, while escaping from the communists who had taken over their country of Estonia (her father was Counsel General to the U.S.), they could carry only a limited number of possessions, and this bottle of vodka was one of those treasured possessions. And they decided the bottle was so special, they would open it only on some very special occasion.

 

That special occasion arrived 20 years later in 1960, when they decided to celebrate the engagement of their daughter Mairi to yours truly. There were several Estonians in attendance, including some very prominent friends from Venezuela, who had also escaped the Soviets in Estonia; and of course, I was there, the only non-Estonian in the bunch. So, when the moment for a toast arrived, the vodka was poured into the little shot glasses you see here. However, as you can see, it isn't a very big bottle, and by the time it got to me, it was running dry, so when my turn came to have my glass filled, my future father-in-law set the celebratory Estonian bottle down and filled my glass with Smirnoff!

 

By the way, I don't want anyone to get the wrong impression - I loved Sammy's parents, and we had a wonderful relationship throughout the years. However, that particular bottle of Estonian vodka was too precious to be consumed by this Irish/German/English/Swedish mongrel, when it became apparent that there might not be quite enough to go around, even if I was one of the "celebrities" being toasted.

 

The map reference shows the bottle's origin, not where the photo was taken, since, given the sad state of geographical knowledge today, I expect there are very few U.S Flickrites who even know where Estonia is..

 

For the Slider Sunday group, way too much sliding went into this image to try to describe the steps I took. Suffice it to say, I took this photo over 50 years ago, and even this image is far better than what I started out with.

 

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For images and stories of this nature, I have put together a set called Our Life Story, depicting our life together over the past half century plus and containing over 250 images and descriptions which, for the most part, are in chronological order. Check it out and let me know what you think of it.

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Taken on July 26, 2012