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Published: September 12th 2006
I'm going to start this blog with a bit of a recommendation. If ever you find yourself hungry in Warsaw, you have to go to Pierogarnia on Bednarska Street. Quite simply the finest dumplings you are ever likely to encounter. And before the foul minded among you snigger and snort, I'm not referring to Blackadder's Devils Dumplings (speciality of Poland though they appear to be... apparently). I'm referring, of course, to the versatile food stuff. For 12zl (about 2 quid) you get a fine helping of dumplings in any manner of stylings. There are meaty ones, vegetable ones, cheese ones, fruit ones, chocolate ones, cream ones... the list goes on. So good was our dumpling experience that we wondered how we could incorporate a Dumplingry (that's my word for a Dumpling joint) into Viks cafe plans.
Even the word "dumpling" is great, but I'm finding the more I'm writing about it the harder it is to concentrate on any of the other words. Must stop writing "dumpling".
Infact, the weird pleasure I'm finding in writing the word "dumpling" is probably because I don't have the foggiest how to pronounce any of the Polish words. Now that I've accustomed myself to the
Shared by buses, trams and take-no-prisoners drivers. Transportation gone mental. Somebody needs to tell them about pedestrianisation of the High Street.
increased usage of "dumpling" I realise that it is somewhat consonant heavy; however, it pales in comparison to some of the Polish words. I would like at this juncture to start an appeal on behalf of the Polish population. People's of the world, a serious vowel famine has robbed this land of much needed a,e,i,o and u's. Please look at your own speech (especially if you're French - vowel hoggers) and send any vowels you can spare. Poland needs your vowels.
We've got round the city renaming all the streets so that they are more recognisable on our map, eg:
- Sweitokrzyska becomes "Sweaty Street"
- Marszalkowska becomes "Mars Bar Street"
- Krakowskie Przedmiescie becomes "Cracker Press Mousie"
Needless to say, this form of map reading gets difficult when you need to ask for directions. I don't imagine the tourist office in Warsaw get many people looking for "Cracker Press Mousie".
Behind that cool Eastern European veneer beats the heart of a romantic people. Never has a people so collectively made me feel like such a cold hearted, unloving man. I thought (expected), when we visited Italy a few years ago that the passion and romance that the Italians
Build 'em high...
...so long as they go no higher than Stalin's Museum of Science and Culture.
are so famous for would be oozing from every pore of every person. But while they banded the odd carnation about, there seemed little of the "amore" spirit.
The Poles on the other hand must be on some sort of mission to rid their land of freshly cut flowers, because they just love giving them away. Men wait on train station platforms, roses in hand. Little boys rush past you in the street with a bouquet for their mum. These aren't isolated incidents - this seems to be going on every minute of every day. And everytime one of these Romeoski's appeared Vik would say "uhhh" and then look at me with a "where's mine?" expression.
Men of Europe! The Poles are setting a floral benchmark that threatens our bank balances and sensitivities to hay fever! The sooner we knock down Polish florists and introduce more Starbucks, the better!
Before I go, I wanted to share with you all a deeply spiritual thing that happened to me. To quote Martin Luther - "I had a dream". It was like a message - no, more like a calling from some greater force. I think I now know the purpose of
our journey. Some travel for anthropological reasons. For some it's about 'finding themselves'. For me however, it's about returning my pants to their original owner. I won't go into the details of how or why - but my pants are from New Zealand. They are top of the line, fast wicking, extra comfortable, Merino wool pants.
In my dream/vision I took a DNA sample of the wool that makes my super-dooper pants and, through investigation into the Merino wool industry in New Zealand and an extensive DNA profiling of one particular ranches sheep stock, traced the original owner of the wool.
It would seem that my destiny is to see that that sheep wears his pants again.
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