Another super late arrival, this time, my Uber driver dropped me off on the side of the road to a hostel that no longer existed. I spent 40 minutes walking the street searching for where I was supposed to be staying. Luckily I purchased a SIM card with data in Amsterdam, or I really would have been stranded. I called 4 times and each time it rang and rang and rang and nobody ever picked up. I googled the place and nothing came up. It was nearly 2 am and I just wanted to put my bag down and not be on the streets.
I looked up something on Hostelworld, and the closest hostel was 30 minutes away, so I started to walk. I finally found Dream Hostel and prayed that I would go in and they would have a bed, at least for the night… I could sort out the rest of my stay in the morning, I lucked out though and was able to have the room until my next flight.
Finally, I could go to bed and just relax.
My first full day in Poland was January 6th, which I found out in the evening holds great significance. Epiphany, street parades, carolling, and the reenactment of the nativity scenes. I walked out onto the street and towards old town, and if you’ve ever been to Burger King in Canada and received one of the Cardboard crowns that they hand out, well that should give you a great picture as to what the hats looked like that everyone here was wearing. Confused and lost and unable to understand anything, I continued to walk, right into the viewing of the procession of 3 wise men who were handing out candy.
The Christian feast that commemorates both the three wise kings visit to baby Jesus and well as Jesus’ baptism.
Once I finally made it through the crowds of people gathered for the public holiday, I
finally found the divide between old town and new town, just what I was looking for. The Polish castle. During the Invasion, old Town was destroyed, but was later rebuilt and therefore parts of Old Town are actually “newer” than New Town. This was only the start of the castle going, and it only got better from here, let the Princess life begin.
One however cannot be in Poland for any length of time and not have Pirogies, so let me assure you that I did not skip out on this one, and in fact I had Pirogies for breakfast and then again for dinner on my second day, absolutely worth it. Even more worth it with good company, so when the guy from Christmas in Trinidad says he’s coming to meet me in Poland, I certainly agree to see all I’ve already seen all over again with him.
If I did Poland over again, I’d keep the same friends you see there, welcome to the start of my official solo travels, until the next adventure.
Though, you never really travel alone. The world is full of friends waiting to get to know you.
I honestly can’t begin to tell you how true those 18 words really are. Yes I got on every plane by myself and checked into every hostel by myself for the next 17 days, but there were people in every hostel like minded to me, waiting for other travellers to show up, looking for other people to meet and create adventures and memories with. So to those I met in Poland, thank you to being the first solo friends I made on my Europe adventure, you weren’t the last, but you officially lit the fire to keep me going. I never really was nerve to travel alone. I left Canada by myself 7 months earlier and moved abroad by myself, but you just added to where I was going, so thank you.
In safe travels,