Poland


Warsaw to Vilnius on SimpleBus

8:15am
I am comfortably seated on SimpleBus, as our driver makes his way over a mostly (so far) 2-lane road through green countryside. At one point we were surrounded by trees and I imagined how Jews hid out there once. Now, as we near Lomza we are going through open farm fields sometimes separated by Clusters of trees sometimes there is a row or two of tall trees separating the farm and home from the road. I think I see corn growing.

2:31
I replied to Pedro and he texted:
“Ok ok…I am on my way to the station…see you there at the entrance.”
He asked if I found a CouchSurfing host. I hadn’t had any luck and asked if he knew hostels. He said there are at least four and he would help. It is so amazing to land somewhere and not go it alone. (First Michal in Warsaw, then Dorota in Krakow, and now Pedro in Vilnius. This was a very different trip for me!)

3:00
IWhen the bus pulled into the Vilnius Coach Station, Pedro was waiting for me. It was fabulous to be met by a friend. (Technically an acquaintance, but in travels like this, I consider such a nice guy a friend.)

I was in Vilnius, Lithuania — a place I’d never thought I’d get to in my life. What would I find here, in the city (or area) of my family’s past generations?


The menus

Zakopane dinner of Spinach Pierogi

Here’s the place that attracted our attention for a good sit-down meal for a late lunch or early dinner. The Pierogi caught my attention. I ordered the Spinach pierogi for 12zl. When the waitress brought it, swimming in butter, I had one bite and was in heaven.   I know I took photos of it, but don’t know what happened to those photos. So I can only share a photo of the restaurant and show you its menus. Arranging the night’s accommodations as we ate Dorota needed to get back to work so our mini holiday was ending soon. We were taking a bus back to Krakow by dark. Dorota was worried about me having a place to stay. I wasn’t. I had called Joanna, a woman with whom I’d stayed the first time I came through Krakow because she’d told me to call when I returned. Besides, I can always […]


Zakopane Poland summer holiday

I arrived in Zakopane, a popular mountain resort in Poland. My Polish friend was on the way by bus. I walked around, found a place for a sit-down lunch, then I listened to room-hawkers who approached me as I awaited my friend’s bus. It was a change for me to stay in a chalet rather that a hostel.


Cell phone SIM for travel in Poland

I got a Polish SIM card for my iPhone today. I went with Play at the recommendation of a Polish friend. The Starter Kit was 19 zl ($6.50).

The man at the Play store popped it in for me and it worked. It simply worked. Phone, data, done. Not like the configuration needed in Central America.

But is that a result of the Polish system or being on iOS7 instead of iOS6 or having an iPhone 4s instead of 3gs? I guess I have to return to Central America to find out.


Bus from Warsaw to Krakow

I awoke at 6am to the sound of Joanna cooking. I was in for another truly home cooked meal. Today was the day for me to move on to my second place in Poland. I was Krakow-bound and a friend was meeting me on the other end of the ride. I sat in a red high back seat on the upper level of my first Polish bus, PolskiBus. It was a very clean, new-seeming, beautiful double-decker. For approximately 5 hours I watched the scenery and did some writing. No friendly conversations with locals on this bus ride.