Monday, 14 June 2010

Full of beans again

Written 12th June

We wrote yesterday off in the end. Finished our coffee, found a shady layby and drank copious amounts of chinese tea whilst fettling and reading a book. then drove through the wooden villages looking for petrol

Not felt that rubbish for ages.

But up and about, full of beans this morning and off on our bikes in the bright morning sunshine.

We are very much looking forward to Poland as we have a great email from a Polish ex-colleague of Will's full of suggestions of places to go (mostly where he grew up in north east poland) and things to eat - excellent.

We decided to give cable cars, funiculars and high tatras a miss (although I was quite tempted by the Kasprowy Wierch cable car where you can get out at the top and stand with one foot in Poland and one in Slovakia on top of a mountain - but we have done a lots of border crossing lately and have Krakow, salt mines and Auschwitz on the itinerary for next week) so instead opted for valley walking in the West Tatras, as recommended by Adam (although he had originally thought we would be here in march when high tatras unavailable due to snow). Still, after the uphill exertions of the other day, nice gentle valleys sounded temptingand the lp reckoned we could cycle them so that would be good.

Dolina Koscieliska first. Sadly no bikes allowed but a very pleasant hour or so's walk,

along a nice path

by the river,

with the occasional horse and cart trotting by,

to the mountain hut at the end,

where as our onward options were one of several 2-3h treks, we decided to stop.

It is a very popular day's outing, or so it seems, with a whole cross section of polish population out for a lovely walk. My only slight surprise was the sheer amount of flesh on display - it seems that the thing to do if it's hot is to roll your clothes up until they just cover the bare essentials for some level of decency, or even go so far as to take your top off and tuck it round your bra, leaving the rest of you wobbling about in the blazing sun for all to see - just unnecessary really. And i'm su that's actually just going to make you hotter!

Desert tribes have the right idea with their long flowing covering everything robes I tell you. Bit like the nuns we also saw on the path, just by way of contrast, wearing head to toe flowing black with wimples with built in blinkers - presumable to keep there eyes focused on the true path ahead without distractions of the flesh - in this case literally :)

Back on the bikes, we tried to find the cycle track to Dolina Chocolowska and ended up accidentally down the wrong valley which, whilst perfect for hardy mountain biking types, was just too bumpy for poor little me. Although surprisingly, it was my arms couldn't take the joggling - how can you go cycling and have to stop because your arms can't take it any more! - I know, I am a girly wuss.

We did find the right valley and cycled down it as far as the metalled road went but I had to admit defeat (due to lack of arm stamina) where the road turned to track, so we headed back again.

Still, a lovely day out and after a nice drive through the rolling polish countryside we are now parked behind a petrol station in what we believe is TIR parking (trucks) on the outskirts of Krakow. City fun tomorrow!

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