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Published: June 20th 2006
Having a drink in Rynek Glowny
Well well well, it seems I've finally made it to an internet cafe. Not gonna lie, we've been on the go non-stop, so it's good to finally sit down and rest. We just finished up a delicious meal sitting outside in rynek glowny, Krakow's main medieval square - the biggest of its kind in Europe! Delicious grilled pork with mushrooms, peppers, and plums with chrzan, salad, and fries on the side. Helped that down with some piwo w sokiem, a cherry/raspberry flavored beer.
So I'm still not totally convinced I'm in Poland, considering how easy it is to walk around a Polish neighborhood, grocery, or restaurant back home, but its sinking in more and more...
Upon arrival, we were picked up by Basia and her husband Ignac. Basia is Kasia's grandma's best friend's daughter, and its her mother who's apartment we're staying in. With a fridge stocked with everything from homemade pickles to creamy Polish cheese spreads, we were all set from the get-go...
Saturday we got an early start, touring Wawel castle and cathedral along with Basia, Ignac, and their son Andrzej. Basia speaks very good English, so that's good for us, but at the same time
The beautiful St. Mary's Church in Rynek Glowny
being forced to speak Polish would be good as well. Plenty more time for that, however. The whole complex was beautiful - inside the medieval cathedral are the tombs of all of Poland's greatest Kings and the like. We toured royal state rooms, the armory and treasury, and other parts of the palace. Later in the day we found ourselves in Rynek Glowny, a spectacular plaza in the heart of Krakow - Kosciol Mariacki, Sukiennice, etc.
Sunday morning was Wieliczka, the famous underground salt mine, with Ignac and Andzej. Beautiful carvings and even an entire chapel made out of salt lay beneath the ground there. After touring this weird modern church, we made it back to Basia's for lunch along with Adela, her mother. Delicious tomato soup, placki, and kotlety. After that we shifted gears to be with more of Kasia's relatives - her grandma's brother's son and his family. We went to Kopiec Kosciuszko, this man-made hill with spectacular views of Krakow. Next was a carnival were we rode bumper cars and a mini-coaster with Kasia's fake cousin Natalia, who's about our age. Last but not least was dinner at all places but KFC haha.
Our food stash
we were finally on our own and took the train to Oswiecim, where Aushwitz I and II (Birkenau) are located. The sites were unbelievable, and it was incredibly hard for me to imagine the atrocities that went on there. After a long morning and afternoon there we spent the evening back in Rynek Glowny were we got dinner, relaxed, and hit the internet cafe. Tomorrow's Czestochowa.
Before I go, some observations about Krakow -
- socks with sandles = VERY fashionable haha
- everyone seems to be carrying baskets with strawberries
- lots of people's hair matches their shirts, and i'm not talking about brown shirts..I'm talking bright red and purple
That's all for now!
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