Saturday, 16 April 2011


In the era of electronic mail and word processing I receive a surprising, seemingly old-fashioned, gift via postal service. It's a beautiful moleskine: "the legendary notebook of Hemingway, Picasso, Chatwin," as the information attached to it says. It's a present from a friend-writer, a person who wouldn't laugh at the idea of daily  (no matter the state of the mind and spirit) exercise of writing. A couple of sentences, random at the first glance, to which, nonetheless, you have to select the proper register and some leitmotif, so that even just one paragraph is a miniature of an entity.

I don't think the moleskine will turn me into a proper writer in my mother tongue, which I dare regret, but every word from the attached booklet on its history sounds so promising: Capturing reality on the move, preserving details, impressing the unique aspects of experience upon paper: Moleskine  is a reservoir of ideas and feelings, a battery that stores discoveries an perceptions without depletion. So be it.

Monday, 11 April 2011

the polish way

I can't understand why Poland becomes mainly in-famous in the world news. I wish we would come up, as a nation, with some surprising act of cooperation, succeeded with childcare or research in medicine.

Instead, the world is reading about quarrels, the origin of which is obscure after a time. Even if people are of different opinion, I'd like it some other way, I'd like it more civil, braver, respectful. But I shouldn't be naive: to see it is not a usual way to handle things here it was enough to attend today's parent teacher meeting at school. It's good people don't bite, otherwise some would need stitches and bandages.

"Division mars Poland's Smolensk plane crash anniversary"


Tuesday, 5 April 2011


A postcard from the other hemisphere is not so obvious these days, but how will you call a friend from the other hemisphere dropping by for dinner? A total surprise, and so was it last Saturday.

It was our friend Joseph From India, I hesitate to say "Chennai", because he seems to be always on the move somewhere between Calcutta, Mumbai and Chennai. Needless to say, I wouldn't expect anyone from Wrocław to call in without some two weeks of previous arrangements and negotiations, searching through schedules, and cancelling everything on the day before due to natural disasters of flu and the like.

With Joseph it was far simpler: we got a text message, saying that he'd just come to Wrocław to see us that Saturday, which we thought was an All Fools' Day hoax. But it wasn't, and to our great surprise Joseph did turn up in our place for dinner, and we had a totally unplanned grand evening together, including piano and guitar playing (our friend is very talented). A real, inspiring "jam session", as some people suggested we should call it!

Distances may not be as huge as they seem, we agreed, wishing his business trips would run across Europe more often:)

Friday, 1 April 2011

postcard from the other hemisphere

When I looked into my "snail mail" box, to my surprise I found more than bills to be stored on the "guilt pile". There was an amazingly green postcard, with a stamp showing spectacular scenery of mountain peaks seen form the flat surface of azure water. It was a postcard from my Student, who went on a two-month cycle tour across New Zealand.

I texted her after the earthquake in Christchurch, but at that time the group was still exploring the northern island. Now they've moved south, where vegetation is far more exotic. She says it's great, even though the showers that made the recent days so wet that she cycles in wet clothes, sleeps in a wet tent and eats wet sandwiches.

Of course I'm very happy that during this 3300-kilometre route she's able to remember about her E.T.*!

You can learn about the expedition on the website of the organizers, CROTOS Travellers' Association.
* English Teacher