Sunday, May 27, 2007

More from Daphne

Was all set to do this e-mail last night but my computer came up with a message that I couldn't interpret except for one word 'problem' so I went off to bed to rest and read my book and left John to it on the computer that was working.

We had the most amazing day yesterday visiting the area where our great grandparents and grandmother came from. We even visited the church where our great grandfather was baptised as well as the graves of, probably, our 42nd cousins one of whom only died 2 yrs ago. I don't know if I can adequately describe in an e-mail though the fantastic people we met along the way. We first met Andre, an hour later than we were supposed to as we got lost in the bus station and missed our bus. We are also not good at following directions of people along the way, mainly because of the language and the fact that when they say 5 kilometers its usually about 15. We've actually taken to riding in taxis more as they are so cheap and my legs are saved. It's been really hot everywhere we've been and they don't like that.

Getting back to the people we began with Andre who was a contact person we had. He is the director of the National Museum in Stourgard which wasn't too far from Tczew the town we wanted to visit where our family roots were. He was waiting for us and ushered us into his office to straightaway partake of lots of Polish goodies and a good long talk with him. Any people who speak a little English seem very eager to converse with you. He gave us also a bag of information and lovely postcards then showed us round the museum and the town and went with us to the bus to go to Tczew. He was such a nice man and it is the first time that I have ever had my hand kissed.

We had several other experiences of helpful nice people on the way and in the town where we visited the church just about the whole village was out, talking flat out in Polish and trying to help us. The taxi driver we had here was shouting out the window at various people and when I realised he was looking for August Plewa, our great-grandfather, I quickly put in his hands the information I had so say that he was actually dead. I then managed to get through that it was the church we wanted to go to. We duly went to the church and met a lady who seemed to know about the Plewa family and the next thing we found ourselves going to the graveyard where we saw the graves of Jahn and Francesca Plewa.

That whole experience cost a bit for the taxi but it was worth it and we duly arrived back in Gdansk tired and hungry but very happy with our day. We're off to Warsaw today but not until we've seen a bit more of Gdansk. Fortunately, we purchased our tickets for the train to Warsaw yesterday owing to another helpful Polish guy who was keen to try out his English on us. However, that's another story.

Must be off now. We join our next tour Mon evening. Hopefully there'll be some English speaking people.