Sunday, January 30, 2011

August 3-5 Warsaw

Krzycie made a wonderful breakfast. Eric had already taken Jim to
the airport. Her sister Jolanta (pronounced “Yolanda”) calls, and says she is
a bit late. More get revealed at this point. The family is headed to Hungary
for a vacation in one of the wine regions. Not Tokay, but the other one
whose name escapes me just now. Jola, and “big” Natalie, the fifteen year-old
cousin who has also been visiting, are going to look after us.

We went to see different things in Warsaw on each of these days. We
walked around the Stare Miasto, the Old Town, which is a complete
reconstruction since the original was destroyed during the Second World

Warsaw's historic appearance has been recaptured through buildings that duplicate what went before.

On another day, Jolanta and Natalie went with us to Wilanow.
(Villanova) The palace and grounds there are like a small Versailles and
once belonged to King Jan III Sobieski. There must have been at least one
portrait of him in each room. After the dismemberment of Poland, the
palace fell into the hands of a noble family. The grounds contained an
interesting church with paintings from more recent Polish history. We also
stopped for chocolate. We had cold chocolate, as thick as Spanish hot
chocolate, with a small scoop of ice cream in the glass. Really good stuff.

Jolanta and Natalie.

Wilanow Palace gate.

Wilanow Palace.

On August 5, we went to the Warsaw Uprising Museum with Natalie.
This new museum is an excellent display, and one that never missed a
chance to point out Soviet duplicity in destroying the Home Army to
eliminate non-Communist leadership in postwar Poland. The Warsaw
Ghetto uprising is commemorated by a path and series of monuments in the
ghetto area. (Or more properly, where the Ghetto used to be.) Holocaust
sites are too emotional for Penny, and so out of consideration for her, we
will not be visiting the ghetto. Penny and I rode the tram across Most
Poniatowski down Avenue Waszyngtona into the Praga district, which looks
very Stalinist.

This was some good beer!

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