Krakow and Warsaw... yawn!

Krakow Travel Blog

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Krakow and Warsaw

People make the place! I say this over and over. It is true. Krakow is the stopping point for seeing Auchswitz Concentration camp. I have no immediate plans to kill Jews, or commit genocide on anyone so to go there and feel dumpy for a day I didn’t find it necessary. And wouldn’t I or shouldn’t I feel worst that perhaps millions of people died there, I make the conscious commitment to see this burial ground of horrible death and less than 24 hours later I am completely ok with humanity? I skipped it.

Hitching in wasn’t easy but many rides, 20 km, 50kms, 1 hour, 1 truck driver call ahead to another truck driver and within 40kms of the city the day light is getting shorter so only 4pm.

It was looking grim for getting a ride, I started to walk back to perhaps a better spot  when a woman pulled over. Took me to the airport, from there I caught a tram. Not having any polish money (krons?) the tram conductor said it was ok. Krakow itself is lovely and for the most part spared the bombing of WWII. There isn’t much to say other than I stayed with some people who were funny, intelligent and lovely yet again it is noticeably easy to see why the Poles go to greener pastures. Average salary for a Masters grad is only $1000 a month. Not pretty, when you can pump gas in England for three times that. I had the pleasure of hanging out with this chocolate labador retriever. Big guy would take me for a walk, jump in the rivers, roll in the mud and had that really cool dog sense where he looks at you with a sort of fleeting understanding.
If for a second as the four of us humans speak, I swear he understood a seconds worth. Coming from Prague, Krakow is kind of a bump in the road but has charm.

In Warsaw I stayed with this psycho chick for 2 nights, her fucking rat dog ate my sleeping bag. The sleeping bag has made many of journey, smells of each culture, and worth more than that fucking dog. Sorry to say but if you’re the owner of a yippie fucking dog, there something there! She showed me the sites she knew- Mc Donalds, Ikea, and and further… She hurt my ear with innuendos of sexual overtones, the rest of the day I spent humming “killing me softly”, and my punk version of “Warsaw Sucks!” I left her couch after the second night to anothers. I like cats better than rat dogs, cats are cool.

I did make it to a nightclub with my second much better host- cool! I say cool but no lovin for an old man, and it is something I like to do every 10 years or so. Smoke and drink too much without any kind of sentence structure cause the volume is too high and the skirts too low to concentrate for long periods of 3 minutes.  Made it to the top of the library (large rooftop garden), modern art museum, Warsaw Uprising Museum (very good), and a cool soup place in the old town. The whole of the old town, Tibetan Museum sums it up best- one room 10x6, 3 euro for souvenior shop bought trinkets.  The old town was rebuilt in the 1950’s, not very interesting. The movie in the Uprising Museum was much more interesting and if it isn’t on the history channel then I don’t owe taxes! Otherwise Warsaw sucks! Livable but I wouldn’t by choice.
The hitching from Warsaw I can blame on the season. It is going slower now. I walk longer on the side of the road and the distances drivers take are shorter. My last driver was special, Polish hospitality- took me to his fathers house cause I was losing sun and then I stayed the night cause it was -05c the night before. His father is a hoot, the house adorned with wood work, his father is a carpenter. The boys, 2 sons, took me for a walk around town. In the morning coffee and breakfast and to the hitching point. Caught a ride to Kaunas, Lithuania, 300kms. Dropped off, walked 500m. and caught another ride to Riga airport, 330kms. Over 600kms, 2 rides- pure fucking luck!

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photo by: vulindlela