Friday, June 17, 2005

Cracow buildings

Cracow buildings, originally uploaded by efroymson.

We did not just have B&W film for the M6, as you can see. I really like the ability of the 25mm to smush together all of these buildings, though I suppose credit for that actually belongs to the generations of Polish architects who built the town.

I was asked if I am wearing a hat (is that really the most pressing concern stimulated by this blog?) and the answer is yes. Forgot to pack any, but that left the opportunity of acquiring some. Gus and I have almost matching military green ball caps. They were very reasonable, from a "Militaria" store in Cracow. Perhaps at some point I will see a photo of us that is worthy of uploading, and you will see what I am talking about.

On the subject of Cracow I wanted to mention a fantastic Italian restaraunt we ate at, called Arlecchino. I kept their card, so I can tell you that they are located on Ulitsa Grodzka 39 and they have a webpage at www.arlecchino.pl

However, the really great thing about the place was the two kinds of olive oil (one with garlic and one with peppers) and the two kinds of vinegar (one with peppers, and one with capers) that you could mix together and top with salt and fresh ground pepper to make either a great topping for the fluffy white bread, or a salad dressing for the greens. The entrees were also good, and the tiramisu, though oddly served in a sort of large teacup, was very good.

Still do not have a cell phone (I expect I left it in an internet cafe or a taxicab) but may get another one in Berlin. Pehaps a larger one that I will not keep in my pocket?

Today we took a pretty short train ride from Gdinya to Gdansk. On the way in I was practicing my German with a couple of older ladies who are on an RV tour. Somehow it bugged me just a little when they mentioned that their "gruppe" had a "fuehrer" but of course those are just perfectly ordinary German words.

They pointed out the Danzig (as it is still called in German) shipyards where Lech Walesa and the Solidarity movement got their start. Unfortunately they are now just symbols, and there is no shipbuilding going on in them. They had been to the old town, and were returning without their menfolk to do some shopping.

One funny thing, they took me at first for a Pole, and were wondering why I spoke German with an English accent. I suppose Americans who can speak a foreign language are rare enough not to be suspected. Or maybe it is just that we looked reasonably comfortable on the train, and everyone all over the planet wears jeans and t-shirts, so what the heck.

After dealing with the lines at the train station ticket booth we followed a couple of young men with stilts, figuring that they would lead us to the heart of the old town. Once close enough to see the old churches, we were able to navigate on our own. Took an exhausting stair climb to the top of the tallest, spectacular views. From the inside you can see the reverse forms of the interior arches, which was also interesting. These old buildings always leave me wondering how they managed to put them up, and Gus was wondering the same thing as we circled up the nearly interminable stairs. Looking at all the brick I was hoping that they do not have earthquakes here. Given that it has lasted some hundreds of years I suppose they do not.


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