Sunday, October 23, 2011

He Who saves One

The Polish heroes and heroines of the World War II era are aging, and passing away. Ninety year old Jerzy Bielecki died Thursday 20 October. He a polish Catholic, fell in love with a Jewish girl, and saved both of their lives when he orchestrated escaping the death camp in Oswiecim, or known under the Nazi name Auschwitz. Jerzy was among the first inmates sent to Auschwitz in 1940, and had been imprisoned two years by the time Cyla's family was sent to Auschwitz. His tatooed number is 243 and hers is 29558.
Upon escaping, they went into hiding in seperate locations, planning to meet after the war, but never were able to do so. Fate took her to New York USA, and he to Novy Targ, Poland.
They did meet again. In Krakow airport, with him presenting her with 39 roses, one for each year they were apart.
He stayed in Poland with his family, and she returned to the USA. She passed away in 2002. I encourage you to read more about their story, follow the link below.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Easter Monday Tradition

"Smigus Dyngus" or Wet Monday. If you are in Poland or many other Eastern European countries this day (Easter Monday), watch out for buckets of water being tossed about. Traditionally it is a fertility ritual from way back. The custom of pouring water was an ancient spring rite of cleansing, purification, and fertility, and now-a-days, is practiced by young males towards young females. But we were warned that even the opening doors of the city tram sometimes would open to "hoodlums" and their buckets of water.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

in honor of Poland and her late President

The funeral for Lech Kaczynski and his wife Maria, will be held in the Wawel Cathedral. Our thoughts and prayers are with the Polish people as they remember their First family.

Friday, January 08, 2010

Elvisa Presleya -- 75th Birthday

The Sisters of Norbet Convent in Krakow's Zwierzyniec district held a Sunday mass for Elvis Aaron Presley. That's right, Poles love him too. I hope the link below will get you to The Polish Daily, and the article on Jan (John) Blajda, Krakow's well known Elvis fan.
We would pass St. Norbet's Convent, when we would go on our runs to the Blonia, or up to the Salwator cemetery, and the Kosciuszko Mound.

We still look for news from Krakow. It is a wonderful city. Even Elvis knows...

Monday, October 05, 2009

Polish Hero Passes

One of our last ventures outside of Krakow was to the city of Warsaw, January 2009. Today I read on the internet that the last-living leader of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising 1943, has passed away. His name Marek Edelman, at the age of 90.
He saved many, and has lived in their honor since the end of WWII.
If you are fortunate to go to Warszawa, spend a day at the Warsaw Rising Museum.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

new territory

It's been a while since we have posted any thing.
We left Krakow at the end of Feburary 2009, and are now back in the States.
There are still many photos of the time we spent in Poland, I plan to continue posting them on this blog - sooner, rather than later...

Saturday, February 21, 2009


I like walking to Kazimierz. This is sort of the boundary between districts

Friday, February 20, 2009

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Friday, February 13, 2009

no more graffiti

I love the way he looked at me

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

more of man's best friends

another place we go by almost everyday. These guys are the 12 apostles

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

the monument to man's best friend

here his name is Dzok, pronounced Jaque, or Jock. This is outside of our apartment.
I just love going by here everyday, someone is always looking at him or taking his photo.
In case you can't tell, it is a dog being held inside a pair of giant open hands.

Sunday, February 08, 2009

supper time

Food in Krakow is unbelievable good. Very upscale, and gourmet. But just the other day, we found a place that really did taste like "home".

Saturday, February 07, 2009

Friday, February 06, 2009

He's Everywhere

Waiting for the tram.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Wawel's Chakra

We live next door to a dragon, Hank has stated such in his travel blog. And we really do ! And the dragon lives in a cave, under the castle. Wawel Castle's Towers are within shouting distance of our apartment. But the most mysterious aspect of Wawel dwelling is the "chakra stone". To Buddhism, and Hindu followers, I think this would be considered an important site.

Chakra's are energy fields. A place of serenity and self knowledge. There are 7 chakras on the earth. And our dear Wawel Hill hides one of them. Any time that I go into this courtyard there are people standing in the corner, where the chakra is said to be. Or is said to be buried.

All you have to do is absorb the energy. But if you ask the guides about it, they may profess they know nothing about it! This is a Catholic nation, and since there is a national cathedral right here, on the castle grounds, not many believe in the "energy" of the stone.
In the photo, you can see a man leaning against the wall reading a paper. He may be a believer in the energy force. You can see that the area has been roped off. But look to see the wall and how it is discolored where people have been.
All I can say is that when I am there, my teeth rattle.

Thursday, January 29, 2009


In this area there is no shortage of musicians. From chamber music to Klezzmer jazz, to street-accordian, any night we can hear talented people. Last night we walked to the Kazimierz district, (in the falling snow) to hear the Klezzmates. They were all business. Not a word was spoken. Not a "hello", "this next song...", or anything! The sound they produced was fantastic. Yet, they didn't offer a CD, nor did the venue where we saw them.
One of the many things we will miss when we return home, will be the music. The tone of the church bells ringing every quarter hour. The trumpeter at St. Mary's, sounding the hour as he has for centuries. And the harmonica man who sits off the beaten path.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Monday, January 26, 2009

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

20 January, 2009

Today we sit here watching the inauguration of the 44th President of the United States. The television is showing Indonesia, Kenya, New York City, and even Memphis. Poland is also watching, with the world.
We are watching with personal interest. Living abroad has opened our eyes to other ideologies, other ways of life. But also renewed our pride of being "Amerikanski" We were proud to send in our absentee votes for the republican candidate. And we are proud to hear our new President tell the world that our country will be strong, and just, and "a friend to each nation that seeks a future of peace and dignity."
This country's, Poland's, freedom was denied them for decades, but not their dignity. Living here has made us more aware of our precious freedom. The peaceful transition of power, is an example to the nations, today Keith's co-workers noted that they had seen the polls that stated 80% of the American people were supporting Obama. It is a strong probability that here, the opposing party would not receive support after an election.
America is a young nation, and I know we will continue to be an example of putting aside our differences, to be united.

minding the store

Souvenir vendor near the castle

Monday, January 19, 2009

A double "toast" to Krakow

These guys walk through town handing out coupons for-
you guessed it - piwo. Hardly ever see two of them together.
And yes, we still have decorations up.
It is still the season, until the 2 or so of February

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Saturday, January 17, 2009

The river is frozen. Layers of ice were drifting by,

steam is rising from the water.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

castle grounds on Wawel hill

I went to the post office on the castle grounds yesterday,
it is quiet there this time of year.
There is a small music shop there and the sound
of classical music made the scene even more calm.
The stacks of reeds are covers to protect the plants
from the cold temperatures.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Monday, December 22, 2008

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

the big head

huge hollow sculpture
in the main market square

Saturday, December 13, 2008

13 December 1981

memorial to commemorate
the day martial law began in Poland.
Poles endured being cut off from the
rest of the world until 22 July 1983,
when the military rule was lifted.

Monday, December 08, 2008

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Saturday, November 01, 2008


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