Before I leave Poland, let me say something about Adam and Luiza! They are such wonderful people and I am so happy that the workaway program brought us together. I love them like family and they could not have been better hosts. They did so much for me and showed me every single corner of their beautiful area that they possibly could. Luiza always wanted me to stay at night and chat, even when I was tired and needed some down time. When the three of us were together, we talked so loud, and laughed so much, and said some very inappropriate things when we were visiting somber historical areas, and I would not have traded any of it for anything! Their daughter, Emma, is such a delight and they are just wonderful parents. Their dog Dexter, is just the best doggo, so well trained and just a happy good boy. Luiza and Adam, I love you both, thank you so much for everything!!
One other reason why I like them so much, is that they lived in Ireland for 10 years and that is where they left their heart, sounds familiar!
Emma is such a sweet, happy baby!
I enjoyed my time in Poland very much. It’s a beautiful country that I definitely hope to visit more of in the future. Adam asked me if Poland met my expectations. I told him that honestly I never really have any expectations, I just go to learn about a place, it’s people, it’s history, the good and the bad. I always hope to have a good time, and that expectation is always exceeded.
Below are a few odds and ends from my trip.
Things are quite cheap for Americans in Poland. This is a receipt from a breakfast that we had at a very nice restaurant near the sea. Luiza and I had eggs and bacon and I had a side of sausage, and Adam had a huge omelette. Coffee and bread rolls included. sTotal: $10.00 for everything.
So Adam had been telling me that there were wild pigs in his neighborhood and I was dying to see them! It was hard to believe as he lives in a very residential area, but he says that they have adapted. Well one afternoon I went for a walk in the neighborhood across the street which has many very tall buildings, hills, homes, and apple trees! It’s an interesting area because there are little stairways and alleys that go up and down the hills, it’s like a maze. I was heading down some very steep steps when I saw the pigs near the steps. There were 6 (not so small) babies and a mom and dad. I was on my way to meet Adam and Luiza for dinner and was a bit concerned that these pigs may try to charge me. I have no idea what a mother of 6 would do if I walked right next to her! I called Adam and he told me I should be ok, so I went about my business and they ignored me! Unfortunately I don’t have any photos, but I have plenty of videos which I am unable to upload to this site.
Another crazy thing I saw in Poland, something that the three of us will laugh about for years to come, is the below sign, and man. We were walking through the beautiful streets of Sopot, where obviously there were many signs in Polish, however this one caught my attention and I asked Adam and Luiza what it meant. The literal translation is “Helium for talk” and they said that this man was selling helium for people to inhale so they could talk funny. I was like “What?!?! This is a thing in Poland”?? HAHAHAHAHA “HELIUM FOR TALK”!!! I just regret that I did not find out the price.
Another thing that I still cannot get over is the candies in this waffle cart. Dessert waffles are very popular in Poland and they come with many different toppings. I noticed that there were like 10 wasps hanging out in this candy dish and I was shocked and appalled at it. I could not believe what I was seeing. I even told one of the ladies standing in line about it, but she did not seem bothered with the wasps. I could not believe that everyone was just going about their waffle business while wasps were literally feasting on the candy. I have since learned that wasps (and these little fly things) are quite prevalent when sweet things are around. The oranges were supposed to attract the wasps, but I guess these wasps are big fans of candy.
Another thing that amused me (I’m easily amused) were these structures that were next to many buildings. Any idea what they are for?
Well the answer is that they are for beating area rugs, big and small! Luiza said that no one really uses them anymore. It’s funny that they were once so popular that they were all over the place in some areas.
Strange picnic bench.
There was a beautiful natural area about a 15 minute walk from my apartment and I did manage to get a few miles in one day.
Always odd for me to see swans in the sea!
This school with children’s art work on the gate, so cute.
Europeans don’t wear shoes in the home. The man who owned the apartment that I rented left these little paper slippers for me. I wore them.
Did I mention pierogis?? These were amazing. They had crispy onions and bacon on the top.
This little store in my neighborhood sells nothing but rotisserie chicken. Adam told me they were delicious and tried to convince me to get one but I wasn’t in a chicken mood. I have enough chicken at home. Give me some more pierogis!
This old lady feeds the pigeons while she sells flowers on the street. The flowers looked rather sad and Adam and I were convinced that she got them from people who were throwing them away, and then sells them. This may have been one of the things that we laughed inappropriately loudly about.
I left Poland on Monday afternoon to fly back to Sweden for one more day. The same flight attendants were on the plane that were there when I flew to Poland. One of them recognized me and I thanked her profusely for turning my books into the airport staff. She was very happy to hear that my new friend Piotr returned them to me!
I did have one little mishap at the airport which was fortunately rectified quickly by the nice Swedish staff members. I had the first seat on the plane next to the front door and when we landed at the Stockholm airport I followed the guy that was sitting next to me. We had been chatting and he was from Stockholm and was familiar with the airport so I just followed him through the maze of corridors. All of a sudden I had a feeling that I went too far and I asked him “hey, you did not have any checked bags did you” and he said “no” and kept walking. He and I were going to catch the same bus into the city center. I turned around and realized that I had passed the luggage carousel and had gone through one to many doors. That is a big problem in an airport because you are NOT allowed to go through exit doors. I am not used to people flying without checked bags and we all just usually walk towards the luggage carousel together, but in Europe people quite frequently go on short weekend trips with hand luggage only. I knew it would be a big deal to get back into the luggage area, and that I would have to be rescreened again. I was worried about missing my bus as another one was not coming for awhile. Fortunately the staff took pity on me and the airport is very small so they rescreened me and I was able to go back to the carousel. My purple suitcase was sitting there all by itself surrounded by three police officers. Fortunately I was able to grab it and catch my bus with no problem. Thank goodness for European efficiency!!
I will see you again Poland, I promise!