Poprad is a town located in a valley of the High Tatras. Since I was traveling from Kraków to Kosice, I had to make some extra stops because there is no direct connection between the two cities. So I chose to spend a couple of days in Zakopane and then make a quick stop in Poprad.
Monday I took a bus to Zakopane, which is located in the Tatra Mountains. Interestingly, this happens to be the highest mountain chain in Poland. Therefore, Zakopane is the capital of the Polish winter mountain recreational activities. Although it is not winter here, it is pretty cold in this picturesque mountain town! In fact, today I was wondering if I was just being a wimp for feeling so cold, but I just checked the weather and it is 45 degrees Farenheight, and will go down to 39 tonight!
When I collected my laundry from the drying rack, I laughed and told Kuba that I am the expert packer! When I said this, he mentioned how there are tutorials on You Tube of how to pack. So of course upon hearing this I was intrigued and began to think about my own packing skills!
Seriously, I have been living out of suitcases for the better half of this last year, which is still so hilarious to me because I used to be so normal, living in my own apartment and only packing when I traveled or moved. However, now I frequently move all over the place with my luggage. Since I change locations so often, I have discovered the fastest, most efficient manner of packing everything that I need into whatever size bag is appropriate!
So I had Kuba take a video of me packing my stuff. Why not? Of course I joked with him that it is not everyday that he is hanging out with an American Couchsurfer making a packing video for You Tube! Here it is:
Even funnier is the fact that this is my 200th blog post, so I think this is a rather appropriate topic about which to post. Yes, I have been living as a nomad for a while! Having traveled to 17 countries since July has helped me to achieve some essential packing skills indeed!
Today I took a day trip to Oswiecim to visit KL Auschwitz, which was the largest German Nazi concentration and death camp. Composed of two parts, there is Auschwitz, which is located in Oswiecim and is a concentration camp. About ten minutes from there is a town called Brzesinska where Birkenau is located, which was the death camp. Today I saw both on a very informative, guided tour.
Saturday Kuba helped me immensely with booking more of my travels. Since many of the transportation sites are all in Polish, it can be rather challenging for me to get much done! Luckily, he helped me to book tickets to travel to Zakopane, Poprad, and then to Kosice. In addition to this, he was also kind enough to print all of my transportation and hotel bookings, which was absolutely wonderful and more helpful than he could ever have imagined!
Friday I arrived in Kraków and my Couchsuring host Kuba came to meet me at the bus station. After dropping off my stuff at his place, we headed out to meet some of his friends. First, we headed to Kazimierz, which is the former Jewish district of the city. Then I ate some delicious pierogis at a restaurant and while I was eating, Kuba’s friend Ola commented that the band was playing gypsy music, which was odd for the Jewish district! Of course this made me laugh because I feel like a gypsy lady traveling around! When I told her this, she said that I really should refer to myself as a globetrotter rather than a gypsy, which totally made me laugh!
Today when I woke up, Michał helped me to book my bus ticket to Krakow on the Link Bus. Since the site is all in Polish, I was extremely grateful for his assistance! Then I headed out to go meet Terry from the Queen’s School of English. Since I have been in communication with him since December, it was fantastic to finally see the school and to meet him in person! After meeting him at the school, we went to a delicious vegetarian restaurant and he shared some excellent ideas with me about how I could possibly earn income while traveling. Of course I very much appreciated his ideas and I am excited about some new possibilities of either possibly coming to work here in Poland or doing other freelance work while I continue to travel!