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26 September 2005

cold liquid chocolate

IMG_0924.jpg

i woke up around 1000 and checked my email. mieszko had emailed with his schedule. today was his first day at university and as could be expected he had a lot going on. i tried giving him a call from the hostel but got no answer; decided to head out for the new city walk and try him a little later. destination: the old town which wasn't quite as old as it used to be. the day was beautiful and i was ready to explore. i was still fully charged from my extending rest in prague; i'd definitely made the right decision to take a break.


down to the old town. beautiful. got some food and walked lazily through the streets. tried mieszko again and got through; we made plans to meet in front of the palace of culture and science at 1700. i checked my map and found the pałac kultury i nauki. that must be it... right by the train station... i'd walked by it on my way to the hostel the night before. an unfamiliar beep from my camera. hmm. i'd charged the batteries this morning. memory card full. blah. i'd been taking a lot of pictures and it had been a few days since i'd copied my pictures from my camera to my computer. i contemplated going through the pix on the camera and deleting bad shots in order to gain some space on the card, but decided against it. it was afternoon; decided to start heading back to the area of the palace. on the way i was forced to delete some shots in order to capture necessary others.

back at the hostel i confirmed with the hostel staff that the pałac kultury i nauki was indeed the palace of culture and science. but why was i asking... most of the exhibits would be closing soon. 'i'm meeting someone there.' they explained that the building was quite large and had multiple entrances. this will be interesting.

walked over around 1630 and found what i believed to be the main entrance, under the large letters which spelled out the name of the building. mieszko told me he'd be wearing a pink shirt and a hat with the name of my father's business on it. at 1705 i still hadn't seen any pink shirts. i must be at the wrong entrance. at 1710 i decided to circle the building and that's when i saw a pink shirt. hat... yes, but this wasn't the brown and yellow hat i was familiar with. closer. closer. i couldn't read the words until i was right on top of him... [dad, when did you have purple hats made?]. as he passed me i stopped him... 'mieszko?' 'paul?' rendez-vous confirmed.

mieszko introduced me to his parents and asked what i'd seen so far. just the old town. he had some ideas... first to lazienki park. we got in the car and began driving. strange to be in a car again... it was a good feeling. my guides pointed out interesting sites along the way. we arrived and began walking... first past the chopin monument. a beautiful park. we dropped mieszko's mom off near their apartment and then continued on to more sites. finally to a wedel chocolate restaurant where i drank _deliciously amazing_ cold liquid chocolate. wow. back in the car and over to mieszko's home where his mom had prepared an amazing meal. wow again. home cooked meal. the entirety of the time i spent with mieszko and his family was absolutely incredible; so friendly and welcoming... thank you so much! i regretted that i'd be leaving tomorrow. had i known i would love poland so much (and meet so many nice people) i would surely have planned to stay longer.

my flight was leaving at 1330 the next day; mieszko planned to pick me up at the hostel at 1000 and bring me back for breakfast before taking me to the airport.

posted by paul on Mon 26 Sep 2005 at 00:00:00 est (-05:00)

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