Friday, 27 June 2008


There is a tiny village some 70ks east of Krakow. There isn’t much there except that its locals are super happy. People walk around with smiles on their heads and talk to you in their streets when they see you are visiting. Quite strange for Poland. Here people usually drop their gaze when you look straight at them. If you smile their way, they tend to think you are an idiot (that doesn’t dissuade me though – I am on a crusade to make Poles more pleasant – the Push for Pleasant Poles campaign). But not in Zalipie. There is a skipping vibe about the place. Maybe it has something to do with this:




The women of Zalipie have been painting and decorating their houses for about 60 years now. Just for kicks. Every year there is a competition for the best folk decorated wall. We were there the weekend before the competition began. The place is beautiful. And all the women so proud. 

Am writing this on Tina's Mac so have no idea why this is underlined.

Wimbledon news: Tipsarevic kicked Roddick's arse yesterday. It was brilliant. Groaning Shazza is out too. It was wonderful to see. Silly slurry.

Monday, 16 June 2008

springing it up...

Spring hoard. Cucumber, baby potatoes, young garlic, cherries, strawberries, dill.
And a new colander from the market.

It’s been a while. During my slack-arse blogging period I began to convince myself that Poland stopped being novel and therefore there was no longer a need for me to write about it. But who was I kidding? It is enough that it is strawberry season and that in itself deserves a bloody post. These delicious beauties are at $2 a kilo! A kilo!! People are shitting their pants literally during this short-lived period (strawberry season only lasts a couple of weeks). I went to my local veggies market and overheard two vendors chatting. I was buying cherries and bent down to repack my backpack in order to catch every word. It went something like this:

Vendor 1 (bleached curly hair, socks and flip flops, a bum-bag):

You know Stasia (short for Stanislawa), I ate about one and a half kilos of strawberries yesterday for dinner.

Stasia (brown curly hair, normal looking shoes, a bum-bag):

Big deal. We’ve all been doing it.

Vendor 1: Yes. But afterwards I drank a litre of buttermilk!

Stasia: Oh no! (o jej!)

Vendor 1: I was glued to the bog for the whole evening! (chuckles with pleasure)

Stasia: Well you deserve the runs for that you silly duck!

Indeed. Never eat an abundance of fruit followed by a fermented beverage. Nor drink water with cherries. The result is strikingly similar.

a whole lot of strawberry love - I made jam

Incidentally it is also cucumber season.
I have begun the pickling process. Garlic, salt, wild dill.
Clay pickling pot, Christmas present from my mum. I asked for it.

No comment. I didn't even make the damn thing.

I just ate it. (Efforts courtesy of Michal's mum).