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Sep '21

Trip Report: Warsaw For Three Nights

Got my first stamp in my new covid passport. If you look at the photo of me in the passport, I have one of my homemade masks around my neck.

The Mercere Warsaw Ursus Station is outside the middle of the town. Nice modern hotel:

With large, comfortable rooms.

One of the reasons I chose this room was that it not only had a free breakfast buffet, but a ala carte restraint in the evening – which I used the first night as I’d arrived at 3PM and promptly took a nap.

As usual, I tended to make a mess upon arrival:

Not reading the menu closely I ended up with the eggplant burger, which was probably healthier than the regular burger. Had the regular burger on my last night, so here is the comparison:

Will say that their breakfast buffet is VERY GOOD:

Now, No Smoking signs include TWO Smoking icons:

Started exploring the neighborhood – like, where was the train station (across the street), and did it have any ticketing machines (no).

Found the closest convenience store, stocked up a little more, took another nap. Mid-afternoon found me peckish so I popped back downstairs for and order of fries and a glass of white wine (Chenin Blanc from South Africa).

Wish I had these wine racks at home – the lower parks – since I have lots of wooden wine boxes!

The drawers pull out.

Dinner found me wanting to just hang out in the room in my robe – still working on Jet Lag – yes, it even affects me! Got the Chicken Caser to help move things through the system:

My last day in Warsaw has been saved to all the tourist stuff now that I’m on a little more even kilter. The Palace and the Old Town – all recreated to its pre-World War II glory since it had been flattened by bombings. Same footprint, same facades, better interior structure.

And they were still working on some of the buildings:

Found a through street and grabbed an Uber – headed to the Warsaw Neon Museum, which, oddly, I’d see a little clip about on the telly:

Watched enough of the dual-language video to piece together that Poland, being in the Eastern Bloc was rebuilt by Stalin and the Russians after the war. As times started changing, the Warsawians wanted something other than drab brutalist architecture of the Russians, and neon signs began to proliferate so that many neighborhoods had their own style. True to top-down planning, there was basically a “Minister of Neon” in the planning department that had to sign off every sign, and often it came with recommendations on changes to fit the neighborhoods.

Personally, as a neon junkie, I was moved, not to tears, but close, when I walked in the doors. Helped that I got the “senior concession” priced ticket (two Euro off).

Breakfast had worn off, and the temps were in the 70’s, and I was in a button-down shirt and long pants – needed food, not a lot, but food soon.

Think “roller-dog” meets Panini – the Paninis are baked with a tubular hole. When someone ordered one, the heat press the bun, then add the condiments to the hole, and slide the dog off the roller machine – thereby not allowing the condiments to leak out. BRILLIANT!

Next off on my whirlwind tour of Warsaw is the Polish Vodka Museum. I should mention that NONE of these places are next to each other, so Uber has become my very good friends today. The Museum is located in the courtyard of al gentrified factory complex in the old distillery building. The rest of all shops, Facebook, Google, etc. offices, an Aldi supermarket, an exhibition of The Art of Banksy, yes, hipster central!

None of the actual equipment left, just lots of history, and at the end, four samples since I paid for the premium tour – should have gotten a tour of the other two Dutch boys on the tour with me. Both well over six feet! And friendly.

Out of steam I headed back to the hotel and pack for tomorrow’s flight to Helsinki.

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