Central Europe: Unpretentious Poland

By Cubie - January 06, 2015

My first encounter with Poland was about 20 years ago, in my school library. I still remember the particular book rack which housed a whole series of fiction books. These books were new, likely newly bought as compared to the rest of the books in the library. Among the books, I found The Silver Sword, a novel by Ian Serraillier. What made me picked up the book was actually the title. Even though we say, "Don't judge a book by it's cover," but truth to be told an interesting cover or title does attract me to pick it up.

Even though I can hardly remember the story, I recall for sure that the setting of the story was in Poland. Very far and an unknown place to a 13 year old me who lived in Alor Setar, a small place in Malaysia (yes, even though it has earned the city status, it is not big). It wasn't a happy story but after reading it, I wanted to visit Poland and see the place for myself.

Our first stop in Poland was Kraków (also Cracow), pronounced as "Kra-kuff" in Polish. From Kraków, we took a train to Warsaw (Warszawa), pronounced as "Var-SHA-va" in Polish. If I have more time, I would like to see Gdańsk and also other places in Poland. To me, Poland feels unpretentious. A beautiful and full of history but comfortable.

In Poland, I was "reassured" that my type of dumplings do exist (the type where fillings are wrapped by dough - the chinese dumplings version). Polish version of dumplings - pierogi rekindled my love for dumplings (ah..yumm). The country of brilliant Poles scientists - Nicolaus Copernicus and Marie Curie.

Side note: Dzień dobry, pronounced jen-dohbrih means good day in Polish. Dziękuję, pronounced jen-ku-je is "thank you"!

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