Welcome to the original English language Poland and Polish discussion group board. This message forum is a place where English-speaking Poles, foreigners (expats) living in Poland, and anyone with a genuine interest in Poland can discuss and read the views of others concerning Poland. Subjects include: Polish news and current affairs; Life in Poland; politics; genealogy research; Polish culture and history; advice and tips on visiting Poland; Polish property and investment issues. The aim of our group is to increase awareness of wonderful Poland using the English language and allow and foster the honest debate and exchange of opinions on anything vaguely related to Poland and Polish - positive, negative and/or neutral! To state the obvious: all opinions and views expressed on this site are solely those of their respective authors and are not necessarily those of anyone else! Messages consisting of ads will be deleted.
They're oiling their zimmer frames
in preparation for the big day in Warsaw.
I don't know.
Perhaps I'm too old for them ...
There's a man sat opposite me in the restaurant car on the Gdansk-Warsaw Expressj aged about 50-55, bald patch with hair at the sides & back (bloody shave it all off, Man!), white socks & dark blue sandals, IRONED baggy jeans and the loudest, most garish headache -inducing psychodelic Rolling Stones teashirt.
Nothing like growing old gracefully.
How was your weekend?
Are you planning to see them?
"How was your weekend?"
Bizarre. I'll start a thread when I've unpacked.
For God's sake man, hurry up and put us out of our misery!
Exactly! And what about my Rolling Stones question?
>"How was your weekend?"?
>Bizarre. I'll start a thread when I've unpacked.
wrzeszcz hasn't been in the least bit bizarre. nothing as memorable ..
Wrzeszcz (formerly German: Langfuhr) is one of the boroughs of the Northern Polish city of Gdańsk. With a modern population of more than 65,000 in an area of 9.9 km² (population density 6,622), Wrzeszcz is the most populous part of Gdańsk.
The name Wrzeszcz, which is a bit unusual even to Polish ears, comes from the old name of the area, Wrzost, which derives from wrzos, an archaic Polish word for heather. The area of modern Wrzeszcz used to be forest and fields of heather.
Historical sources mention Vriezst in 1261 AD, and by the end of the 13th century the Cistercian Monks of Oliwa owned four or five water mills on the Strzyża, the stream running through Wrzeszcz. In 1412 AD, this suburban village was granted to Gdańsk city councillor Gerd von der Beke, an ally of the Teutonic Knights.
Early area landowners included the Bischof family, who held the increasingly residential settlement in the late 16th century and early 17th century, and the Koehne family, which started acquiring possessions in the Wrzeszcz area in 1616 AD. Gdańsk patrician Zachariasz Zappio acquired most of the land between today's Slowackiego and Do Studzienki streets and built a palace there. When King Jan III Sobieski visited the palace in 1677 AD, the little valley where the palace was located was renamed Dolina Krolewska, or King's Valley, to commemorate the occasion. Strictly speaking, in the 17th century the name Wrzeszcz referred only to a small market square, 130 m by 35 m, on what today is known as Aleja Grunwaldzka (Grunwald Avenue).
Between 1767 and 1770, Gdańsk mayor Daniel Gralath made a personal project of turning the two kilometers of old road between Wrzeszcz and Gdańsk proper into the four-lane, tree-lined Grand Avenue, as it was then renamed. Each lane of the avenue was lined by 350 trees imported from the Netherlands, and the entire cost of the project was the immense sum (for the time) of 100,000 guilders.
In the 18th century, residential construction aimed at the wealthy city folk took precedence. The erected residences were mostly classical style with beautiful gardens and the obligatory tree-lined driveways. By 1804, Wrzeszcz had about 900 residents, most of them working in breweries, distilleries, retailers, and factories making wajdaz (a kind of ash used to bleach cloth).
On December 6th 1807, under French occupation, the [Gdańsk-Prussian] convention ceded Nowy Port, Oliwa, Wrzeszcz, Ostrów, Siedlce, and Hel to Gdansk.
From the mid-19th century onwards, Wrzeszcz grew to become a fashionable and wealthy borough with beautifully decorated city villas for wealthier residents and even spacious accommodation for local labourers. In 1872, Wrzeszcz was joined to Gdańsk by a horse-drawn tram along the Grand Avenue.
In 1904, the Gdańsk University of Technology (Politechnika Gdańska) Grand Hall was built, soon followed by the city hospital, which is now the medical academy.
World War II was relatively kind to Wrzeszcz, as only a few buildings suffered damage. More destructive to the beautiful buildings was the communist regime's postwar policy of eradicating evidence of the borough's wealthy capitalists. Buildings were allowed to fall into disrepair and owners were evicted and their houses separated into tiny apartments which were then leased to people without means to maintain them.
Buildings that survived in good repair include the consulates of Germany, China, and several other countries, as well as some houses whose owners resisted eviction during the communist era.
The borough is now developing rapidly. A great deal of commercial activity (particularly banking and shopping) now takes place in Wrzeszcz. A number of international firms such as Citibank, ING Bank, Fortis Bank, and Shell have chosen to locate their offices there rather than in the Gdansk city center, large shopping centers such as Galeria Bałtycka and Centrum Handlowe Manhattan are opening along Grunwaldzka Street, and extensive military properties have been sold to housing developers. Traffic on Słowackiego and Grunwaldzka is jammed daily.
German author Günter Grass was born in Wrzeszcz in 1927, when the area still retained its German name, Langfuhr, and the area is the setting of two of his early novels, "The Tin Drum" (1959) and "Dog Years" (1963).
Wrzeszcz is a nice place, good shops etc, but the Tri-City as a whole, despite the number of tourists doesn't seem that user-friendly. After a week of ferrying elderly parents around Sopot, Oliva, Gdynia (they liked Gdynia best) and the Old Town in Gdańsk, I feel a bit worn out. They were staying in Jelitkowo, a short walk along the seafront from Sopot. There seemed to be hoards of Scandinavians and Germans, plus quite a few British accents.
Gdańsk was fine as always, but once we strayed from the historic parts, we kept getting jostled of the pavements by shaven headed locals or cyclists who won't slow down for the elderly - and the public transport system, (skm) isn't too easy for non-Polish speakers. The tourism infrastructure seems geared to either Poles or organised groups of foreigners.
We noticed a huge differebce in the quality of restaurants, from the superb to the dire. the best ones were 'Tawerna Dominikańska' on Targ Rybny in Gdańsk (I've been there a few times before) and 'Boolvar' ath the Neptune Centre in Gdynia. Evereywhere else we went (how many cream cakes can two pensioners eat!) there was either slow and very rude service or wrong orders, or tramps wandering in the restaurant begging and not being thrown out. Also a lot of the beachfront places could have been better. The toilets are always locked (Why?? Do they think somebody will come and steal turds??) and have really surly staff.
But Gdynia truly has excellent shopping, and a cruise to Westerplatte (mostly elderly Germans - I wondered if the boat would start firing torpedos) was wonderful.