via Daily Prompt: Carve
One of the places we visited in Poland was the famous salt mine at Wieliczka. The tour of the mine was certainly worth it. There were many highlights along the tour. One in particular was this carved scene – The Last Supper – found in a stunning chapel where there were many other religious carvings. If you look at the right of the photo you will also see a pilar, part of the elaborate, carved architecture throughout the chapel. It still grabs my attention, to think it was carved from salt. Salt of course gets more than a couple of mentions in the Bible, and is used as a metaphor for spiritual vitality in the New Testament. We came home with a grinder of salt from the mine for our culinary vitality, which we have jealously guarded and measured out, more for sentimental reasons. We have salt lakes here that yield edible salt, but after that tour of the mine, and seeing the beautiful architecture and art carved in the walls and ceiling, salt is not the same.
via Daily Prompt: Relocate
Poland was a facinating place to visit, a country with a rich and sometimes tragic history. We spent a considerable time in Warsaw, but we did visit another importnat city – Krakow, which used to be the capital of the Kingdom of Poland, until the captial was, in stages, relocated to Warsaw. Warsaw became the economic and political capital around 1611, but Krakow remained the capital of the kingdom till the late 18th century. Today Warsaw is the capital of Poland, but Krakow is still considered the cultural capital. And it did appeal to me, it was rich in music and the arts in general. The sections we saw of the city were only a slice of life, but I experienced it as very bohemian (wonderful), free thinking, and a place of learning. If I had to relocate to Poland I would certainly choose to live in Krakow, I felt at home, as if there were kindred spirits roaming there.
Filed under community, life
via Daily Prompt: Orange
Nothing much happens here, we might wake up to find the reigning political party have dumped the prime minister (Rudd-Gillard-Rudd, or Abbott-Turnbull) or that we’ve been signed up for yet another military venture supporting our allies. I still remember the Tiananmen Square protests of 1989, we avidly listened to the radio every night, half expecting history to be made with a people’s uprising throughout China. Which was ironic, because it was already called The People’s Republic of China. The protest was bold and powerful, and even though there was no popular uprising, it sent a message to the world.
But the one that sticks in my mind is the one I know the least about. The Orange Revolution in the Ukraine in 2004. I know that the protests resulted from reports of fraud in the 2004 presidential election between candidates Viktor Yushchenko and Viktor Yanukovych. Yanukovych was declared winner, but fraud became evident. Daily protests and a general strike forced the authorities to offer a second round of voting. After which the clear winner was Yushchenko. What I remember of it was the colour, the protestors wore orange, or carried orange flags and baloons, and hence it became known as the Orange revolution. Notably, it was a peaceful revolution (despite the fact that the president had attempted to engage the army in reigning in the protestors, which the army refused to do). Of course there’s a lot more to it than that, the histories of Russia, Poland and Ukraine are in the mix of this, the preceding years of government, public attitudes, the division between west and east (more pro-Russian) Ukraine, the murder of Georgiy Gongadze – a vocal anti-corruption journalist, and more. It was an amazing moment in time.
The halfway point as we ascend Kasprovy Wierch in the Tatra Mountains, in southern Poland. I hate heights, but I really wanted to experience both the cable car and the mountain, so I did, it was fabulous and well worth the journey up. The view was spectacular and the feeling was one of exhilaration. Passion trumps fear every time.
Filed under Country, nature
Lyn and I went to Poland back in 2013 to see Anna’s parents, Jon and Anna went in December 2012 ahead of us, and we went in January 2013, ah yes European winter! We constantly used the trams and trains. The trams came in two sizes (as above), large and mini trams, which ran alongside or nearby each other. Mini trams feeding the larger distribution lines. Naturally, in order to work as an integrated system, the trams and trains, and busses, were synchronised. Not only that, they tended to run regularly and on time. They were fun to hop on, and they worked well. Wish we had such a system here, it would help neutralise the car dependency Australians have, which is partly due to inadequate public transport in the very first place.
via Daily Prompt: Passenger
A few years ago we went to visit our sons in-laws in Poland. Part of the trip was to visit the Tatra Mountain region and Poland’s great winter capital Zakopane. Zakopane is in the southen most part of Poland and is near the border of Slovakia. It is a popular spot for mountaineering and skiing. There was an international qualifier tournament for skiing when we got there. The photo is showing the twin cable car coming towards us. We are passengers heading up to Mt. Kasprowy Wierch and the cafe at the top. It was an amazing view all round, but I particularly enjoyed looking out over the snow covered trees.
And docked at the top of the world.