Tuesday, July 3, 2007
Day trip to the village of Frank's ancestors
On thursday the 21st, it was again the 4 cousins that started the day with a light breakfast in the square in Krakow, watching another group of kids parade by. The plan for the day or should I say destination was a small town where Frank's ancestors the Gorka line came from, named Spytkowice. Getting there however took some work.
First there was the bus from Krakow to Rabka. That was the easy part. Then it was trying to find a taxi driver that would take us the rest of the way from Rabka to Spytkowice. We found the taxi stand and of course numerous drivers, but as is always the case, the farther you get from a major city, the more difficult it is to find someone who speaks English. Thank goodness for the younger generation. Note to fellow travelers. If you can't find an adult that speaks English, start looking around for a kid or someone under the age of 25. Almost all of them can speak some English. It has been our experience that while most know it, many are embarrassed by their lack of skill and so some feign ignorance. If you are desparate, like we usually were, they will come to your rescue.
Anyway, I've thrown in a picture of the car we wanted Frank to rent for the ride, and of course the smaller one we got. There is also a picture of us trying to negotiate with the cab driver. Essentially we wanted him to take us to the neighboring town and wait for us, since there were no cabs at that distant town. Frank and Susan, with the help of a couple of youngsters, did successfully get this across, and before long we were on our way to Spytkowice.
Spytkowice was a lovely little town and it took no time at all to spot the church. They even had some of the information about it in English, so they must get a tourist or 2 from time to time. From the church we walked about another block to the cemetary. But, alas, we could not find any graves of the Gorkas.
We ended up getting a little lunch at the neighborhood hotel/disco which was sandwiched between 2 schools. At least one of which was parochial. We seemingly ordered a little too much, but then again it's difficult in this Slavic land to ever get the weight watchers portion. The kluski and perogi were good here also.
Having seen the majority of the town, we walked back to our awaiting taxi and road back to Rabka to catch the bus. We were in luck as the bus back to Krakow was waiting, so in we went. It was a little uncomfortable on the bus that afternoon, given the heat and humidity. Needless to say, they are not big on air conditioning over there and if you or your neighbor don't have good hygiene, well you can pretty much get the picture.
One of the passengers that staggered on the bus took a seat opposite Susan. Given the 90 degrees and no air circulation, it was a little humorous and perplexing to see him in long pants, a shirt and long-sleeved wool sweater. But, given his condition, I don't think it mattered too much. An older woman with babushka sat next to him also. During the trip, he kept blowing kisses to Susan. The older woman seemed to approve, as long as it wasn't her that was the object of his affection. So you see, it doesn't seem to matter where we go, Susan has that animal attraction that has men of every nationality after her. If he wouldn't have gotten off a couple of stops before ours, who knows what may have happened. An addition to the cousins perhaps?
As is usually the case, by the end of the day we were all pretty much fading. I include a shot of the Patriach and Saint Joan of trophy bride fame to give you an indication of our energy level.
Another dinner at the Vulcano, some cards and pivo, and it was another good day in Krakow