Michal and I arrived safely in Poland yesterday afternoon. On the way here, I realized that this is my seventh trip to Poland/Europe in the last 6 years. It took us a full 25 hours from the time we left my aunt in New York City until the time we arrived at his parents’ house. We were welcomed with open arms, a delicious Polish meal and a comfortable bed awaiting us. Despite being long, the journey was relatively uneventful which is always a welcomed blessing.
The most colorful moments of our journey consisted of watching Michal’s bag literally dangle from the plane as they unloaded the luggage and his somehow fell off the conveyor belt and was hanging on by a thread. Thankfully his bag was recovered. The other moment also occurred at the Berlin airport. We were about to approach the van company that we take back and forth to Michal’s home city to Berlin, when the German police beat us to the van. Supposedly new rules were put into place about where this company can park while waiting for passengers. This appeared to be news to this company. Michal then spent the next twenty minutes trying to locate them. Once we found them, the drivers allowed us to sit in the van and wait while they walked back to the airport to gather the other passengers that were waiting in the original pick up location. While we were waiting for the drivers and other passengers, a German police vehicle and two German police officers pulled up alongside the van. Michal and I were the only ones in the van and I was silently praying that they did not try to speak to us, or if they did that one of them at least spoke English or Polish. Thankfully they had no interest in us and instead just had more words for the drivers when they returned.
Michal and I are awesome travelers. While traveling is often stressful on couples, it is something we do best together. This year we were successful cutting an hour and a half off of our overall travel time by catching an earlier van to Szczecin, Poland then catching a train (yes, I rode a Polish train on my first day here) to Koszalin instead of waiting around another two hours to take another van. We were so early that Michal’s parents were not expecting us to the point that they had not yet unlocked the gate. Michal had to jump over the gate (it’s about 6.5 feet tall) to let us in. His parents were pleasantly surprised to see us earlier than expected.
My thought for today is that jet lag sucks. It sucks even worse when you are sick. Despite 13 hours of sleep last night and a 2 hour nap this afternoon, I am still completely disoriented. I have no idea what day it is (I keep thinking it’s Tuesday), my internal clock is completely out of whack (we are 6 hours ahead of NY time) and this darn cough just won’t go away. Thankfully all I have planned for the next few days is to indulge in sleep, food, books, soccer, family and overall relaxation.
If you’re looking for something to read in the meantime, I wrote a blog about my experiences in Poland a couple of years ago. This blog is full of interesting cultural tidbits and random experiences through my eyes. Here is the link: http://onesummerinpoland.blogspot.com/
Oh and a final note, my cell phone has been shut off for the summer. Send me e-mails, facebook messages, or comments on the blog to stay in touch. I do get homesick and love to hear from and stay in touch with everyone back home.