1989, a few years before the Soviet Union broke down (how could you not know Soviet Union P. R. Princess >.<), so I managed to live in that dark age in dark Latvia too, but luckily I don't remember anything of it Though I've heard stories of terribly long queues just to get some bread and houses with paper walls between flats and what else not.
Eh, I don't find that there's anything special about the "era" I lived in, though I hate the stupid, ugly flat buildings of Soviet times and the people were not the nicest ones too, my kindergarden teacher was really terrible, for example, very mean. And there still are just too many Russians in Latvia, who create messes, when the government tells it won't pay for their education in a foreign language and what else not. I mean if it's really that hard to learn latvian and if you don't want to have anything in common with it, then why do you stay here? In the little, tinny, poor Latvia?