The rain was beating down as the morning bus pulled out of Riga. The only spots of colour in the suburbs were shopping centre billboards, petering out to a one-lane road driven straight through the middle of an endless pine forest. Traffic was light and the scenery nondescript: mud and snow, a giant yellow chair in the middle of a field, two-carriage trains by the side of the road. I woke up at Parnu Bus Station, on the other side of the Estonian border. My neck was stiff and the road was covered with icy slush. There were still two hours to go.