A smooth and comfortable ride over most of Western Europe
Krakow, Poland Apr 10, 2011 Sun 11 : 45 PM local time
A smooth and comfortable ride over most of Western Europe, over the Channel and vast fields of green and minute cities in France and Germany and into Poland and then Krakow through a few dark clouds and high winds. It is cold on stepping out on the tarmac, but the warmth of the reception is comforting and affectionate.
Its a small drive from the airport to the Hotel and then immediately to scheduled programs. The city important persons have given a dinner in honor at the oldest restaurant in the city. We are warmly clad because it is biting now, the cold, and then rushed into horse drawn carriages. They are smart and white, with all provisions in place for a comfortable ride over cobble stones. I suddenly feel I am in Elizabethan era, sitting with dressed and glamorously gowned ladies with hats on them and the countryside passing by.
The Great Palace, a huge and picturesque structure lies just in front of the hotel we are in. It is awesome and inspiring. Other old buildings slowly pass by in glimmer and old world charm. There is Italian, and French and Gothic and other important features that have gone into the architecture, in making the city it is. Most of the city was left undamaged during the War - Hitler wanting to make this his base city, spared it from any destructive operations. Over dinner there is protocol and discussion on various topics. The history and culture of the place has given us an entire meaning of what Poland is all about. Dinner is elegantly served and below the first floor where we dine, hundreds have come out in their numbers, darkly dressed holding candles and a prayer in their voices. There is a certain discipline and grace about what we see from the window. A short walk later this walking candle holding congregation, kneels and prays …
It is the first death anniversary of their President, who as you may recall died when their plane crashed on its way to Moscow on this very day a year ago. A respect for the departed leader and a deep sentiment expressed by the people of Poland.
There is opportunity for some great photography and I shall indulge so it can be shown to all EF. But I believe a Tv team follows wherever we go. It could be a Tv Channel - input but so long as its noticed that is fine with me.
Tomorrow they take my hand prints to be preserved and kept secure. The keys of the city follow and then perhaps a showing of ‘BLACK’ LATER ON AT THE FESTIVAL .. There shall be a visit to the University and the awe it would give me on knowing that many there speak Hindi. During the early years, so the expert translater informs, sanskrit used to be taught there at the University. And soon I shall be going there to officiate the best foots forward.
I tire now … i must to bed.
I shall fill in more by tomorrow …. usual time ..