Thursday, May 21, 2015

An Interesting Night around Siedlce

One of the Polish English teachers for whom I taught only two classes last year at her school invited me along with the volunteer who is teaching there this year to go to supper at a restaurant in Siedlce. This teacher has a friend and teacher colleague who is also a friend of another volunteer here this time, so it was 5 of us who gathered in Siedlce for supper.

We waited in this small park in front of the restaurant until all had arrived.

Then we started for the inside of the restaurant to ask for a table. I lingered to take the picture below showing the name of the restaurant. I had been hearing about the name this new place and was delighted to being going there.

 When I entered the restaurant I realized we had to go to the upper level and was faced with about 30 stairs. I assured everyone I could do this, but slowly. No, no, no! The manager was coming with the key to make the handicapped lift work, so I had the great pleasure of floating up the stairs on the lift instead of having to walk those stairs.

The restaurant is on the upper level of very old building which once upon a time was a major market building in Siedlce.  The decor was beautiful. And as the home decorator TV programs would say, "It has character" with much charming reclaimed brick.

This restaurant has is what we call in America a craft brew place. I started out with a small glass of very good beer. I could order this in Polish but then got stumped on a question. My Polish friends had to rescue me. The question was "Do you want light beer or dark beer?"  I often say I speak just enough Polish to get into trouble.

The menu was totally in Polish, too, so that presented an interesting challenge as well.  For example, under the seafood menu I found mule. My Polish friends could not translate that word nor could Google Translate, so I did not order it!

Our meal began with an appetizer.

  I am not certain what it was, but it was good.

Here's my main dish.

Again this was very good. The small white dish holds what we might call potato salad in the United States. And the photo show just a bit of my beer.

We had no room for dessert. So the waitress brought us instead a very small glass of cherry liquor. Oh my! That was good too.

As we left the restaurant to start the trip back to Reymontowka we noticed blue-black clouds in the distance. When we were about half-way there, one of my fellow volunteers remarked, "Is that hail?" Along the roadway in the grass we could see white patches. The signs of a storm became more intense as we turned off the highway. There was more and more hail collected along and in the roadway. Thousands of leaves had apparently been pounded off the trees and were covering the road.  The fields were steaming because the ground was warmer than the air above them. When we got to Kotun, there was intense fog.

We made the turn to Reymontowka and it looked as if nothing had happened. No remains of the hail or leaves on the roadway. But at breakfast, our fellow volunteers assured they too had experienced a bit of hail storm.

And so it was a highly pleasurable evening in Siedlce and very exciting ride back to Reymontowka.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Learning Can Be Fun!

One time,when meeting with the Governor of County of Siedlce, he remarked that early in the time of Global Volunteers here they were puzzled by the fact that the volunteers taught English using games and songs, having fun. But after awhile they began to see that it worked.

Here are some of my beginner students that I see in the afternoon at the Kotun Community Center. They are working on learning body parts. When this picture was taken they were busy coloring a clown with labeled body parts. When they are finished they bring the paper to me and we pronounce the words and point out body parts such as shoulder, leg, foot, and back.

Today I tried Hokey-Pokey for the first time with this group. I always start it and then we go around the circle and each child selects something to put in. I was really pleased today when words like hair and shoulder were offered.

The above photo is the fourth grade students I teach one hour each morning. Here we are doing a game. Each rolls dice and the number matches a body part they may match to their drawing of a robot. The paper you can see best shows multiple heads, multiple bodies, and multiple legs. This student just kept adding things as he rolled the same number over and over. They didn't realize they were practicing saying numbers and body parts in English. They were just having fun.

But Polish schools also know how to teach children with fun.

Today we were invited to go outdoors with the children to a concert by Limbos, a group that specializes in school performances.

When I put something on Facebook about this group, one of my former students, now a university student commented this group is a great favorite of all school children in Siedlce County. 

Here are a couple of photos of the kindergarten group that I worked with on Friday.



The children are just totally engaged.

The video below is a very short view of one selection in the concert. I was surprised to hear Somewhere Over the Rainbow. 

video
For we American guests they played Rock Around the Clock. I surely hadn't heard that song for a long time.

When the concert was over I realized the kindergarten students had been sitting on mats taken from the nearby gymnasium, while the older children were sitting on benches and chairs. And look, they all had removed their shoes before stepping on the mats.




Monday, May 18, 2015

Celebration Day 2

25 years of cooperative work between Global Volunteers and the County of Siedlce. That is what the sign says.

And what a wonderful celebration it turned out to be. I wanted to be here so badly for this because I have done 28 programs in Poland and have seen how the country has changed as well as how the teaching of English has changed in this country.

The program started with a number of speeches. This certainly, in my experience, is the European way. Distinguished guests must be recognized, but what pleased me was the several of those providing such recognitions included in the list the school teachers with which volunteers have worked, the parents who have driven volunteers to and from schools, the summer language camp staff, and the students themselves.

Some people are put off by speeches but I enjoyed them for the Polish host representatives expressed ideas that were both novel and heart-warming. One, for example, talked about this partnership being very unique. Others spoke about how the volunteers have brought optimism.

Then the fun began. Many students from a dance school in Siedlce entertained us with great dances.

video
Above is a video of one dance that carried hints of being a Cinderella story.

The boys below look like they are having great fun with their routine. The boy on the right began to come to language camp last year. I remember him from when he was a toddler and his big brother, who then was one of my students, introduced me to him. I had the great pleasure too of seeing the "big brother" dance in several routines that featured high school students.
And the girls above look like dance is fun, too.

The dance was followed by a musical group.
 The woman on the right has been a language camp director many times. It was great to see her. The young man on the left has come to language camps as a young boy. He was playing the keyboard when he barely able to peek over the top. When I was here last year in May I saw him on a musical competition TV show called Must be the Music. He is almost ready to go pro as a musician.

Next we were treated to a rock band, Runaway Train.

I have known the man in the center for some time and we chatted for a bit after their performance was done.

That really sums up the day. I saw so very many that I know in Poland. It was simply one of the best days of my life.










Sunday, May 17, 2015

Celebration Day 1

This weekend marks the celebration of the 25th anniversary of the partnership between the County of Siedlce and Global Volunteers. After breakfast all the volunteers but me boarded a bus for a day in Warsaw. I stayed behind because I knew my gimpy leg couldn't take that much walking. I was sorry to miss the chance to go to the new museum, The History of the Jews in Poland, but this will not be my last trip to Poland. I'll get there another time when walking is not a difficult and painful enterprise.

I enjoyed a mid-day nap and had a nice obiad. I found out the soup I was eating, now for the third time, was in fact broccoli soup, not asparagus soup. Anyway, it is good.

During the afternoon I sorted through the teaching materials I have carried to my room and made a decision about what I will do for classes next week, at least for Monday.

At about 5 PM another event began here at Reymontowka. If I understand correctly a company proposed dumping hazardous waste into a local landfill. The people who live here are opposed to this. They have set up a blockade at the landfill. The event here was a rally for continued support of those who are out in all kinds of weather mounting the blockade.

There was a 90 minute concert by a noted Polish singer -- but not noted to me. Sorry I can't do a name. I enjoyed the concert very much. Polish popular music has a different rhythm than music from the United States because Polish words are generally longer with more syllables. After the concert this group moved to the bonfire area while we move to a formal dinner.

This dinner marked the start of the 25th anniver sary celebration of the partnership between the County of Siedlce and Global Volunteers. The food was lovely, and the fellowship between representatives of the County government and our team members was very nice.

We then had a lovely musical performance. One is trained in classical vocal performance and the other in piano performance.

As one team member said, "It has been a long day, but one we will never forget."


 

Friday, May 15, 2015

The Artistry of Polish Children

When I first walked into the Cisie School this week I saw a beautiful display in the hallway of children's art. I have been meaning to take the camera all week in order to photograph it and did that today.

Above is a beautiful water scene that features the storks who spend their summer in Poland, along with photos of other birds.

Today the 4-6th graders from the school in which I teach in the morning were gone on a field trip. Instead we were asked to work with the younger children and I spent the morning in the kindergarten room. In Poland the class is called Grade 0 because the word kindergarten is associated with what we in the United States would call preschool. Below are two views of the kindergarten room.


With just a little bit of help these kindergarters were able to another volunteer and me their name and their age, in both instances answering in a simple sentence. We had flash cards and asked them to name animals, body parts, and clothing along with the colors of these objects. One card I had was of a zebra, an animal they all know in English because the Polish word is so close. When I asked them what colors are zebras they looked puzzled. The teacher whispered to me that they teach all the colors except black and white and so the children couldn't name the colors of the zebra. 

During the second hour the students sang several songs they use to learn numbers and vocabulary for family members in English. 

Meanwhile I was busy looking at the wonderful art on the wall. 

 When I see the insect even in the United States I think biedronka. 

The picture above is beautiful spring flowers. The picture below is done as a mosaic using small pieces of paper.

The three art pieces above were done by children 5 or 6 years of age. 

Somehow I think we give children in the United States a subliminal message that they cannot draw and they aren't artistic. I hope the Polish children are never given this message. 


Thursday, May 14, 2015

Teaching Day #3

We were out the door bright and early again and arrived at the Cisie School a few minutes before 8 AM. I teach my class in the biblioteka (library). Today I started with the 4th graders. They were sitting outside the door. Apparently there is a Polish tradition, if not a rule, that children cannot be in places without an adult. As soon as I opened the door they followed me in.

We started with a Bingo game that has the names of the 50 states of the United States. I did this mostly to expose students to more about "English" words are pronounced -- "English" in quotes because the names of our states come from several other languages in addition to English. This was good because I could work on island when we got to Rhode Island -- it is not is-land. And again I saw the pattern of wanted to pronounce new as nev. Yet they did quite good with Massachusetts and Connecticut -- not easy words.

Then one of the boys spotted one of their favorite Polish games on the library shelf.  It has a name something like Kikki Rykki. I let them play this game for about 10 minutes. It has nothing to do with teaching English, except I did try to ask questions about the colors of the hats on the chickens. After I watched for a bit I began to understand the strategy for the game.

The Kikki Rykki Game
 At the start of a Global Volunteers service team, the members establish team goals. One of ours is to learn more about Polish culture and language. I figure that's what I did for those 10 minutes -- I worked on one of our team goals.

I started my class of 5th graders with a discussion of temperatures in Minnesota. This subject came up yesterday and I wasn't prepared to discuss the cold weather temperatures in the Celsius system.

Then I gave them a worksheet on which they had to insert the correct article -- a, an, or the -- into sentences. This was a follow up exercise after the Sight Word Bingo game the day before when an appeared on the Bingo card.

Then I also did the U.S. States Bingo Game with them. With both groups, we would pause when someone won a game and find the four or five states in their winning row on a U.S. map.

Then back to Reymontowka for a rest.

At 2:40 we leave for the Kotun Community Center. Today I had 8 six-year olds arrive. I wanted to work on colors and shapes. They did quite well with the flash cards. Then I gave them sheets to color.

 For the middle school class I had six girls. Today we played Scrabble.

This was a bit of a challenge for them, but they seemed to enjoy it. I try to do something that will help them enhance their language, but at the same time make it pleasurable, for after all they have already attended a busy day at school.




Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Teaching Day # 2

Pani,Pani, can we play Bingo? That was the question from yesterday, so I promised my Cisie students that today would be Bingo.

I started first asking them to finish the sentence: Today is ...and they could fill in Wednesday and pronounce it correctly. Then I asked them to finish the sentence: The weather... This one stumped them. When I said weather is pogoda in Polish they immediately got it and decided the weather was sunny and cold. The word, cold, is the reason I do this little exercise nearly every day. They seem to be exposed only to hot or cold as choices in their English textbooks. So I told them we would save cold for weather associated with snow on the ground. Weather today is cool, and it is. Perhaps by noon we made 61 (16C) but at 8:00 AM this morning when this class started the weather was definitely cool!

The Bingo game I chose is Sight Word Bingo. Instead of numbers on the cards there are words. This is an easy way to expose the students to English, English, English because they are hearing all English words all through the game. When someone won Bingo then I stopped the game and we discussed the words in that student's winning line.

I always start the Bingo game as caller and then when a student wins that person becomes the caller. That gives students a chance to pronounce the word and a chance for me to quietly correct pronunciation. This group of young learners are still applying a lot of Polish rules to the pronunciation of English letters. For example, they will pronounce the word, new, as nev. In Polish the letter W has a V sound; there is another letter in the Polish alphabet that carries the W sound.

My first afternoon with the beginners had 8 students. Today we again reviewed the alphabet. Then I wished to assess how they did with numbers. They knew the English words for numbers 1-20. After this assessment, I put pages of numbers on the table with numbers 1-12. Then I gave them two dice. They took turns shaking the dice and then adding the amount shown on the two dice and then finding the correct page with that number from the group of pages placed on the table. 

This group meets for one hour and they have already done a day of work at their elementary school. So for the remaining time I gave them a page to color that pictures of fruit. Once they were done they came me and then we read the names of the fruit in English. I know when I study another language my brain gets fried after a bit trying to use that language and it is nice to have a bit of break.

My second class is middle school students. I had 5 students. We are not getting all that indicated they wished to come because today is the day those in 8th grade participate in a confirmation service. They and their families have been busy preparing for and then today participating in this event. We spent most of this time playing Opposites Bingo -- words such as hot, clumsy, crunchy, and fast.

I am enjoying working with these great kids.





Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Teaching Day #1

Today the teaching program began, after we spent two days in orientation and preparation.

I teach in the morning at the nearby Cisie school. There are 5 of us who start there. Today one of the teachers drove 3 of us to school and Dorota drove the other two volunteers. Poland families drive small fuel efficient cars because as much as Americans often complain about the price of gas, it is between three and four times more costly here. Most families don't have a vehicle that will hold 5 people plus the driver.

At the school I am teaching one group of fourth graders and one group of fifth graders. The fifth graders are the 4th graders I had last year. I teach in the library and the students come to me at the change of classes. I even get a cup of coffee delivered to during the interval between classes.

We were driven back to Reymontowka by a father of one of the students. He could do this because one of the volunteers goes on down the road after the Cisie teaching and spends time in preschools teaching English. Thus we could all squeeze into one car.We were back to Reymontowka by 10 AM.

I haven't been sleeping well and took the chance to take a morning nap. I got myself going again about noon and got things organized for the afternoon teaching.

At 3:00 five of us where at the Kotun Community Center for an after-school program. My first group are children ages 6-8 years who are definite beginners. Oliva has become a popular name in Poland and three of my seven students in the first class have that name. I have students make name tents and place them on the table in front of them. That way I can see their names and learn them more quickly.

With this class I am right at basics. We spent a great deal of time on the English alphabet.I find they know some animal names in English and they know some of the colors.

The second class are students from middle school. We talked about food, what they liked to have on a pizza, and then played Food Jingo.

This blog posting has no pictures. It is a Global Volunteers policy to keep the camera put away until one truly has developed relationships with people, and certainly one day one -- such relationships don't exist.

They are great kids.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Another Teaching Adventure

The official Global Volunteers program for May 2015 began yesterday. As readers know I had already been here for week working in the resource room and sorting and re-shelving all the teaching materials left behind by other volunteers.

Yesterday I had breakfast alone, but had a nice conversation afterward with a Polish man who had been to Minneapolis. He spoke English-- I don't know enough Polish to carry on such a conversation.

There was only about 30 minutes of work left in the resource room doing the final sorting of materials. Then I had some free time to simply relax. I could hear music from a party being held downstairs. It wasn't until I went down to wait for the volunteers that I found it was live music.


Nine volunteers arrived about 2:45 in the afternoon. One volunteer had experienced the domino effect of late planes and so was expected much later in the day.

A bread and salt ceremony is common in Central Europe as a way to visitors. In some countries it is called salt and bread. The photo below shows the volunteers being welcomed.

 We enjoyed our mid-day meal and then Dorota gave an overview of the schedule for the coming weeks. She then took the volunteers on a tour.

I sat on the patio -- I know my way around the Reymontowka campus and my leg was still hurting.

In just about another hour it was time for the evening meal. This one included pierogi.

It was wonderful, after the evening meal, to go to my room and not have anything much to do.

And it was the first quiet night I've had here. No parties or events happening downstairs and no dogs in the neighborhood doing a serenade.

Today we are starting the orientation process. Four of the 11 team members have been to Poland before. The others are quite anxious about being in an environment that feels foreign to them, whereas to me it feels like my second home.

My teaching assignments are one group of fourth graders and one group of fifth graders at the nearby Cisie elementary school. Then in the afternoon I will teach in the after school program at the nearby Kotun Community Center. I will have one group of beginners -- aged 6-8 years, and one group of middle school students -- 13-14 year olds.

This is my fifth time teaching at Cisie School and it feels like home to me, too. Last year I also taught in the after school program at Kotun, so that is not a problem either.

 I am trying to stay patient as the "newbies" worry about meeting the children. I know they are wonderful kids.


Thursday, May 7, 2015

Remembering 2004!

Well, the "reshelving" project continues. I worked on cleaning out materials from the old shelves that we had moved the evening before so they could be taken away from the work room. One group of shelves held reports from the past 15 years. I didn't know if the reports should be saved, but I went through the books removing all the other materials such as the handouts used by the teaching volunteers -- those certainly don't have to take up shelf space in the future. In so doing I found one of my own reports!

This one is from 2004! This was the first time I had come to Reymontowka for the school teaching project. Before that I had volunteered in Zakopane in the summer language camps. I was concerned I might not like Reymontowka and the flat plains area of Poland after experiencing the beauty of the mountains. Instead, I learned that I like this area very much!

I remember this group of students. Note my handwriting says these students had not studied English before. This was before English lessons were introduced into the primary school curriculum in Poland. Thus, I was at the very basic, such as teaching the pronunciation of the English alphabet. One day I had extra students -- something about the lack of transportation to get them home from school. And I need to explain the students I had were staying for English lessons after their full school day.

We were going through the English alphabet and the extra students sat there with stunned looks on their faces as their classmates made what they considered weird sounds for some of the letters.

One day when doing this, I mentioned that the L card had a lion and there were no lions in Poland. The kids suddenly all disagreed with me. After much funny communication, I learned they meant the Lion in the horoscope system.

Because these kids couldn't speak much English, I asked Dorota, the Global Volunteer Team Leader, if she would come one day for an "Ask Pani" session. In the course of that questioning period, they asked where I was born, on what day, and at what time. Ah! They are trying to do my horoscope! Volunteers do get paid with fun and marvelous memories!

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

A shelf adventure

I am at Reymontowka a week before the actual May teaching program begins for a very special reason. Last year we decided we were running out of shelf room for the teaching resources that are brought and left behind by volunteers. I said I would donate a bit of money if new shelves could be built.

A bit of  background. The older part of the manor house is slightly more than 200 years old. When I first volunteered here in 2004 a room with library cupboards was used for the teaching resources (volunteers had been coming to Reymontowka since 1990). The difficult part of this was that every time an event such as a wedding reception (wesele) or first Communion Party was held, all the materials had to be moved out of the room, stored elsewhere and then moved back.

By 2006 when I returned, a new teaching resource room had been constructed in the attic of the house. University students studying interior design constructed shelves out of cardboard. (I even had a cardboard bookcase in the flat when I lived in Hungary, so apparently this is not unusual.) The cardboard shelves have served well. The only problem was that more and more teaching materials had arrived and there wasn't room to shelve them. I said I could donate some money toward new shelves.  Also there was a huge need for someone to really sort through everything -- do the puzzles have all their pieces? do the alphabet flash cards have the whole alphabet?

So I started on that task a bit on Sunday when I arrived. I can tell you now I can sort a Uno deck is less than 4 minutes to ascertain if all the cards are there!

Above is a section of the old shelving.

Below is a section of the new shelving.

With jet lag and then a lot of noise during last night that disturbed sleep, -- my progress has seemed slow.

I was enjoying supper tonight


When to my surprise Dorota and her husband came into the dining room. They went to the work room and put the last shelves into place, rearranged things a bit so I have more room to work.

The hallway was lined with old shelves and trash bags when they left. I think now I really can get this whole job done in the next couple of days. Now there are places to put stuff!




Saturday, May 2, 2015

Random Thoughts on my trip from Saint Paul to Warsaw

My older granddaughter drove me to the airport on Thursday evening, April 30. Once there I quickly checked my bag, but then found I had to go to kiosk and check in again to "verify" my passport, even though I had entered my passport number when I did online check in for the flight from home.

I was in the boarding area by 7:00 and the flight didn't go until 9:45 so I knew it would be long time before I saw "supper." This part of the MSP terminal is loaded with Ipads.

I used the Ipad to order a serving of sweet potato fries. I had already purchased a bottle of water and chocolate bar at a shop.

The flight left right on time at 9:45 and when the map came up on the entertainment center for my seat I was pleased to see our flying time was less than the scheduled 8 hours and a few minutes. We had a good tail wind chasing us to Europe.

Supper did appear about 2 hours into the flight. I selected barbecued chicken and it was quite good.

Then off and on I slept; I think I slept perhaps three hours of the flight. The rest of the time I was reading on my kindle.

About the time we crossed over the UK, breakfast appeared. We had a breakfast sandwich, orange juice, and mini bagels with cream cheese.

It was a bit of hike from the gate to passport control. This time, and for the first time, I was asked where I was going. When I said Poland I was asked if I was taking a train. I explained I was staying overnight and taking a flight to Warsaw the next day. Then I was asked when I was leaving the EU.

Walked to the Citizen M hotel. I noticed a building project is going on to add another 126 rooms plus some meeting rooms. I also noticed the canteen area had been redesigned since I was there last August.

Up in my room, I found the somewhat wonky remote control had been replaced by an Ipad.

This shows the Ipad set for managing the television. Wish I could do it this way at home. Simply touching one of the area, such as BBC One, turns on the TV monitor and moves it immediately to that channel. Down the left hand side are other selections such as Room Control. In that area I could select the room temperature, turn the lights on and off, select the color for the lights, and also control the window blinds.

The picture above shows the monitor when a specific channel on the TV was not selected.

I was ready to sleep so curled up under the duvet on the very comfortable bed and slept about three hours. Then I walked back to airport plaza for supper at the Grand Cafe. My favorite here is the Burger Deal.

Notice how what we Americans call French Fries are served in the Netherlands.

Went back and while digging into a pocket of my suitcase I found a surprise.

 My granddaughter, who theoretically lives with me, but spends most of her time with friends, college, and work, had hidden a card. Inside she had written "thank you for all your help."  She really is a treasure.

I\then crashed in bed, only to awake about 4 AM. I got out the computer and did some work on minutes for meeting I had recently attended and e-mailed the file off for review. Read for awhile and then went back to sleep. Got up about 8:00 and wandered downstairs for breakfast. I had elected not to prepay for breakfast. In the past the cost has been 9 Euro  I didn't think it was worth the cost.
 
I got a bottle of orange/mango juice, a cinnamon roll that I really like to have every time I'm at this hotel, and used a coupon to pay for a Cappuciccino. In the future, though, I'm going to pay for the breakfast because now it is the real deal with eggs, bacon, tomatoes, mushrooms, pastries, etc. -- well worth the cost.

I returned to my room and packed up again and walked back to the plaza. It was only 11:00 and I knew my flight wouldn't be boarding until after 1:00 PM, so I stopped at the Grand Cafe and ordered a continental breakfast.

I was so glad I did this. The orange juice was fresh squeezed. It tasted so good. But what I saw was amazing. Soon there were 5 very elderly people sitting by me along with their luggage. All were wearing name tags as if on a tour. Two had been delivered to this spot via wheelchairs. One woman had her chest covered with military medals. I started to do the math in my head -- if these were World War II vets, just how old were they? Then I heard one of the men say he was 94 years old. When my waiter returned I whispered to him that the gentleman was 94. The waiter replied, "I think they are veterans coming for the May 5 anniversary. I have such great respect for them."  What a wonderful statement from a young European man.

Finally made the trip to Departure Hall 1 and used a kiosk to check into my flight. Again I was asked for 30 Euro to check a bag. This started last year for the first time. So I elected to pay later and went to stand in a line for help. I gave them my Delta skymiles number and the charge went away.

Then it was through security. The Amsterdam airport is getting more and more automated. Now we lay our boarding pass bar code on a machine and we are admitted to security. No more taking off the watch-- this used to be a requirement whereas in the U.S. it is taking off shoes.

Then off to the boarding gate. The first sign I saw said this was a 4-7 minute walk so you know it is a good hike. Got there in plenty of time, and on my way replenished by bottle of water that I had to throw away before going through security.

The flight down to Warsaw was routine. Once there I hit the ATM and got Polish money, walked down the arrival hall to a shop and got two chocolate bars, and then went outside to wait for a taxi. Since it was late Saturday afternoon, I was soon at the bed and breakfast where I will spend the night.

Walked out to supper and saw this sight:

Nowy Swiat is lined with banners for the Polish flag. Yesterday was Labor Day, observed in many, many countries, today is Polish Flag Day and tomorrow is Constitution Day.

While sitting at the restaurant I could hear lots of singing and shouting, and then figure out some sort of sporting event had just concluded. People appears wearing scarves for their favorite team.

Learned a new Polish word from my Coke Zero.

If I can believe my translator app, mistriz means champion.

Concluded supper with a dessert called chocolate pot of creme.

Now it's time to sleep again! Just about getting myself on the European time schedule.