K is for Kraków #AtoZChallenge

K is for Kraków

After a quite adventurous and long, longer than planned train ride, (which in itself is already a story), I finally arrived in Kraków. A friend of my great aunt picked me up at the main station, checked me in to the student housing where I was meant to live for the next two weeks and made sure that I had some proper food before going to bed. The bed was far from what you can call comfortable, I really had the feeling that I had arrived in the soviet era…

shop in Kraków, Poland For 6 months I lived in Kraków. I tried to learn the language, but I did not apply myself enough and one cannot learn a language only through learning grammar! Quite quickly I fell in love and had other things in mind while in my Polish lesson, as both my lover and I frequented the same language course. I did learn about Polish and European Politics, Jewish Culture, and Polish Philosophy. I even joined S in some of his international law courses and learned some extra things that way. My lessons all being regrouped at one side of the week, we made sure to discover the town but also some other parts of the country.

Rynek Główny, Kraków And now, I have not been back to Kraków for 6 years. But it was an experience that left me richer.

view onto Wawel Castel, KrakowI lived across the street from Wawel Castle. I spend hours a day walking in the cold. I found out what it is like when the ink freezes in a bic pen. I saw pigeons wear bread wreaths around their necks. I visited Auschwitz but also the Kraków-Płaszów concentration camp and with it the factory of Oskar Schindler. I wandered through a strange film set reminding us of the not so rosy past of Kraków. (You wouldn’t by any chance know what film it is?) I took beautiful photographs of street signs and of people. I saw many Saint Nikolas riding their motorcycles down the main square.

film set in KrakówOnce I returned to England, I reflected on Auschwitz replying to following question: “What, to you, is the meaning and significance of Auschwitz?”. I wrote my Bachelor’s dissertation on the topic of Poland’s EU integration. Then in France I continued to keep Poland in my focus, two more research papers were produced on the topic of Poland.

Oh and I am still madly in love and am the proud mom of an “Erasmus Baby”.

I guess that now it is time to go back for another visit. Or more than just a visit?

snuggling with tigers

Kinky King Konrad kisses Krista in Karlsruhe. 

During the month of April, I am participating in the A to Z Challenge, my theme is authenticity and eclecticism, which in my book go hand in hand.

Thank you for reading! If you enjoyed this post, then please feel free to leave a comment, to share it on social media and to follow my blog and twitter @SolveigJ

© Solveig Werner 2016. All rights reserved.

8 thoughts on “K is for Kraków #AtoZChallenge

    1. Thank you Gulara 🙂 I was so young at the time!
      I still have many more photos of Kraków with which I can decorate my blog in the future, if I ever have a story to tell 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Krakow! Wow. I would love to go there. I think it would be good to see how things are now compared to the Krakow we see in history books. Auschwitz. I would like to experience those feelings because I really think everyone should, no matter how uncomfortable it may make one.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think that it has changed a lot more since I was there 6 years ago.
      Auschwitz was very strange. I can feel a lot of things, so it was not the most comfortable experience. I went there right at the beginning of my stay, and I was shocked by the behaviour of some sports team that visited on the same tour as us.


  2. Solveig, I ditto the other comments re your post and photos of Krakow. I didn’t make it into Poland while I was over there, although I did go to Berlin and Leipzig.
    Last Saturday, I attending a literary lunch with Thomas Keneally who wrote Schindler’s Ark. He spoke about hanging out with Ralph Fiennes while they were filming. He was apparently quite shy and new to the movie scene and they struck up a friendship. The beauty of the city is such a stark contrast to the evil of Auschwitz.
    xx Rowena

    Liked by 1 person

    1. See, we are connected somehow Rowena…
      The city is definitely beautiful. While living there I learnt so much about the Holocaust and Jewish culture in one of my courses, I have preciously kept all my notes, and I wrote almost every word that was said during those lectures. For the course I wrote an essay about the huge memorial in Berlin, it was one of my best marks ever, I got a 5+ out of 5, and was really proud of my work. I just reread it, maybe I will share that one one day too…


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