Off The Road

You know you’ve stopped being a tourist and started being a resident when you leave the camera at home. We’re going for a stroll through Nowe Miasto, through Łazienki, through Praga and we know we’ll be back so there’s no real photographic urgency here. Thus, you have no pictures to show mom of the place you live.

Enter urgency. Mom demands pictures, daughter remembers to bring camera.

We’ve settled down in the past few weeks. Those people and places that demanded immediate visitation have been visited. This allows us (and I really mean us) to get to know the city. There are museums and historical landmarks that even Radek somehow missed in his five year residency. Rest assured the list of bars and clubs he’s missed is much shorter.

We’ve been testing the range of international cuisine available in the city’s restaurants. Thai, Indian and Japanese food is all relatively new to the market and what the restaurants lack in authenticity they make up in creativity. At home, we’ve been experimenting with Polish cuisine. I count making Bigos and Pierogie from scratch as one of my finest accomplishments.

Another gold star for me…cooking my first Thanksgiving dinner. And believe me, the circumstances were not ideal. As a country Poland is unfamiliar with several Thanksgiving staples, including: whole turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce and non-pickled pumpkin. In fact, their limited range of boxed, bagged and canned foods presents a constant problem for me. But I prevailed… and made all of Radek’s friends give thanks.

As for me, I gave thanks too. I’m thankful every time I understand a question in Polish. I’m thankful every time a street leads me in the direction I think it will. And most of all I’m thankful that these things happen more and more every day.

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