Thursday, March 29, 2007

Servas Polska

Went to a Servas meeting with Aissa and two other Polish board members. Me in the middle of three beautiful Polish young women: from left Ewa, Ula and Aissa. They met to discuss some current issues and future solutions for Servas, like increasing the role of the internet in contacting Servas hosts. Maybe they also made plans for me to get me travellin' on. Makes me curious ...

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Spring is in the air ...

Spring is in the air in Warsaw and there are flower stands everywhere ... Aissa bought some nice tulips to decorate her flat. It's nice and cosy to stay with her here in Warsaw.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Adam Mickiewicz, Warsaw

In front of a monument to Poland's greatest romantic poet Adam Mickiewicz. Spring is a romantic time, so I was hoping for some inspiration to write a love poem...

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Learning English at the University

Here you have a photo of me in Aissa's classroom, with her university students learning English. In the last meeting they happened to be talking about international cooperation and contacts and you bet I introduced myself as an active promoter of both.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Pałac Kultury i Nauki, Warsaw

The Palace of Culture and Science was built in Warsaw by the Russians some 60 years ago. The building was originally known as the Joseph Stalin Palace of Culture and Science, but in the wake of destalinization Stalin's name was removed from the interior lobby and one of the building's sculptures. The building was a gift from the Soviet Union to the people of Poland. The architecture of the building is closely related to several similar skyscrapers built in the Soviet Union of the same era, most notably the Moscow State University. However, the main architect Lev Rudnev incorporated some Polish architectural details into the project by traveling around Poland and seeing the architecture.

Recently, there has been a lot of discussion whether to keep it or pull it down since it's rather bizzare communist grandeur type of architecture. Finally it has been decided to keep the building, part of the city's history as it was.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Enjoying life with my new friend Krokus

The last few days have been very exciting, so it's nice to be in the countryside, just outside Warsaw, to calm down together with my new friend, Krokus.
He might look tough, but he is a sweetie.

Monday, March 12, 2007

All Different All Equal, Warsaw

Just arrived in Warsaw, still fighting against a jetlag, and we already went to two demonstrations.
Last weekend was very eventful here, with a Polish edition of 'All Different All Equal' and a so-called Manifa - a demonstration concerned mostly with women's rights but also supporting tolerance, respect for minorities, gay and lesbian rights, workers rights.. This demonstration-march takes place every March in major Polish cities, on or close to 8th, which is the International Women's Day.
We (a few thousand people) walked from a central place in the city - Palace of Science and Culture - to the Parliament building, it took two hours. (Fortunately, snow was gone by then and Aissa is holding me tight in her warm gloves.)

Sunday, March 11, 2007

From Rosario, Argentina to Warsaw, Poland

What a thrill ... sooner than expected I left the Southern hemisphere and travelled from Latin America back to Europe. I did this trip of 13.261 km with my new companion Anna Aissa who lives in Warsaw, Poland. This is what she wrote:

"Woody flew with me from hot Buenos Aires to snowy Warszawa! One day of travel and such a shock! Incidentally, winter has been very mild here in Europe in general, so the snow seems to have fallen specially for Woody... Anyway, he withstood it bravely :) As my mom was very anxious to see me after a month's absence (my trip to Patagonia) Woody had a chance to visit a country house outside Warsaw."

Friday, March 09, 2007

Rosario, Argentina

Last week I arrived in Rosario, Argentina. On this picture, you see me at home with Pablo and his brother. Pablo is a member of Servas and he works for them as an international coördinator of the youth chapter Servas Youth. This organisation promotes peace trough an international network of hosting homes and travelers. Travelers come and go in Servas Youth Argentina. So I think I will be on the move quite soon, although I appreciate the pleasant atmosphere of Argentina and the hospitality of Pablo very much.