Saturday, October 11, 2008

Only Missing the Mouse

Day 214
I was up early, but not quite early enough. When I got to the bus stop the kiosk was closed. There wasn’t enough time to walk. One of the other people standing around realized my predicament and pointed to the kiosk across the street. My bus was in view though and there wasn’t time. I point to the bus, he pulled an extra ticket out of his pocket, I gave him the money for it and thanked him. People in Poland are so nice!

On the train I met a Spanish woman who had lived in Dublin for a decade and was currently teaching Spanish in Poland. Chatting with her was a nice way to pass the ride to Warsaw.

Once in Warsaw I got to the hostel despite the directions on the website. Thank goodness for the map in my guidebook! I dropped my things of and quickly filled my grumbling stomach before heading into town.

Warsaw was completely destroyed during WWII. All of the downtown area has been rebuilt. While there is a Disney like quality to it, I still found it beautiful. Wandering the cobbled streets and jumping out of the way of horse drawn buggies was a good way to spend a few hours. I didn’t want to really check out too many museums though. Jeanfrançois was planning on heading towards Warsaw and we had tentative plans to do some of the museums together over the next day or so.

After some wandering I was able to get my things out of storage and moved in. I fell asleep for a while and dreamed that while I was waiting to move my things into the room I had decided to go to a five star hotel. For some reason I seemed to have forgotten that I had already paid for a hostel. In the dream I called my mom from the hotel to chat. When we hung up I realized that not only did I have two places to sleep, one being very expensive, but that I had just made a really expensive phone call. I decided to not worry about all of it and go to the movies. This is when I woke up. When I realized where I was I felt like I had really dodged a bullet.

On my way out to the supermarket I ran into Jeanfrançois, he was heading the same way. We decided to skip the hostel dinner though and went to a Polish place instead. I had some yummy beef stroganoff and some type of pancake thing. I think that this was the biggest meal that I had had for a very long time. I was absolutely stuffed!

After dinner we decided to hit the hostel bar happy hour. This is where we met Martin, also from Quebec. The three of us decided to hit a couple of places that had been recommended by one of the girls at the hostel, Kasha. She had directed us to a hidden courtyard that seemed to be tourist free. This didn’t stop two girls trying to scam Jeanfrançois and Martin though. They bought them shots. The guys were both seasoned travelers though and knew what was going on. We simply left and went to another bar.

Before heading back to the hostel we got some pizza and made plans to meet up at 9 the next night.

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