Alternative title: When we lived above the doughnut shop.
As we zig-zag through Eastern Europe, we have found that there are a number of striking similarities between cultures. There are clear spirits in ample supply; delicious, tasty morsels of dumplings served everywhere and finally, an obsession with fried dough.
I am not complaining!
We chose to stay at a guesthouse just off Nowy Swiat, a leafy and attractive street leading through to the Old Town because of it’s central location. The room was three floors up and not having the greatest view, we left the window wide open. Why? Well, to catch the intoxicating smells of the doughnut shop below as they cooked and glazed and sprinkled their way through the day. Jez thinks that they smelt like KrispyKreme, but believe me they were far superior!
Even though we maintain that our senses were impervious to the unregulated sugar levels, we found that Warsaw had character and charm enough for us to feel enchanted by it’s old town and equally mesmerised by the new building works of the past 30 years. Warsaw was essentially flattened by Hitler during WW2 but the city seems determined to mend the wounds. We visited the museum of the Warsaw Uprising, detailing the Polish resistance to the German invasion, inviting visitors to appreciate the enormity of the damage inflicted upon the city but to help heal the scars as well.
One of the most enduring ‘scars’ of Warsaw’s story is the Palace of Science and Culture, a gift from Stalin to the people of Poland. An imposing and grandiose structure, the building stands out in the Warsaw skyline and certainly matches it’s siblings , the Seven Stalin Sisters of Moscow. Nowadays the building holds a cinema, a museum as well as numerous conference halls.
If nothing else, we felt that Warsaw was a lively and youthful city, a culmination of the city’s history and the positive outlook for it’s future.