Churches, Churches, and more Churches
07/30/2011 - 07/30/2011 60 °F
Today was going to be just as long but lots more to see, and a little more uplifting (that was, until the rain came and never went away). But to start out we travelled east along Al. Jerozolimskie to the National Museum we found under construction. Last night we did the City Centre. Today we continued North on Nova Swiat through the Royal Route to the Old and New Towns. Marked with a statue of Copernicus was the Staszic Palace from the early 19th century. Next door was University of Warsaw, for which we failed to locate a t-shirt. We stopped in several churches, and the first was the Church of the Holy Cross where Chopin's heart is urned in an inside column. Across the street and next to the most expensive hotel in Warsaw is the Namiestnikowski Palace, the president's home. Two guards out front and one on the side, honestly, that's it. Wanting to cover a lot of ground, we skipped out on the Royal Palace , imagining ballroom, high celings, fine art, and breakable stuff. We did catch sight of the King Zygmunt III Column who made Warsaw the capital, and St. Ann's Church , whose interior ceilings caught Chris' eye . Next on our shopping list was St. Johns' Cathedral, first a church in the early 15th century. We took several stainglass and organ shots. We even paid a toll to see a crypt where former presidents, arch bishops, and military officials are interred. Nothing more to do after that, but eat, so I picked a supposedly inexpensive traditional Polish cuisine. As we strolled through the old town square , we were concerned of the high prices. At Kompania, We got a tray of seafood, from fried squid to baked salmon. It was yummie (sorry you missed it, Mom). You wouldn't have loved the 15 minute wait for our check. While we waited, Chris kept noticing women climbing on a wall and posing, so after lunch he thought he should join in on the Barbican, built in the early 1500s. The next stop was really quite interesting. We paid to enter Marie Curie's Museum. We saw pictures of her family and Einstein's on vacation, her contract for $50,000 in Paris in 1943, and old scientific equipment. It was raining quite well now as we quickly grazed the new town towards Church of the Visitation of the Virgin Mary "the Church of Our Lady Mary". The trees kept us dry for a bit as we looked out on the Vistula River. We had but one more Monument to check off (I thought), so we headed a bit west on Dluga to the Monument to the 1944 Warsaw Uprising. It happened to be taken over by a concert fiasco (try that on the Vietnam memorial in DC, yeah right). A quick peak at the Krasinkich Palace, now the National Library, and then BACK to the old town to get one more in. Chris just had to see the half Jesus. I'm glad he did because what I saw I had to capture on film. Etched the walls of the Church of St. Martin were fourteen etchings of Jesus' arrest and crucification. The church was also a nice break from the rain (glad I had my packing poncho). A bit hungry for ice cream but not willing to stand in the rain (apparently all the resaurants had window salesman of ice cream but not inside), we settled for a Polish dessert, waffles with whip cream, nuts, raisins, and caramel... delicious! 30 minutes later, Chris was hungry for pizza, so we got a personal pan closer to our hotel, stopped at a famous restaurant for a famous t-shirt for a not-so-famous mother, and eventually ended up at the hotel where I proceeded to sort 100 or so pictures, write details, and put it away for when I got wifi again.