Wednesday, March 23, 2016


Piercing sunshine. Who would have guessed? Blue skies and a bold statement of defiance: you thought the rains would stay with the continent this whole week? You're wrong. The sun wins.

I eat breakfast quickly, very quickly...


... and I catch the metro to the center of town. I'm meeting my very dear friend for a morning of marketing and coffee. In that order.

She introduces me to the Wednesday (year round) Old Fort farmers market.
You'll like it today -- she tells me. It has additional stalls because of the holidays.
I'm just a wee bit skeptical. Winter markets back home just do not have much that I would need for a dinner. Or lunch or breakfast for that matter.

As we enter, I am blown away by it.

My friend knows her favorite producers and vendors and they know her too.



Easter breads:


Only goat milk cheeses here::




I'm telling you, madame, the best sour cherry juice ever!


Fresh greens:


To make soups:


Pickles, I stare at the pickles. Ed so loves pickles.


My friend asks the vendor -- the sign over the pickles and cabbage says they're certified. Certified as what?
Organic, the vendor answers proudly. Here, pull out some for a taste! I do.


Delicious. I'll take some.

My friend hands me a shopping bag and stuffs it with a goat cheese and the very uniquely delicious farmers cheese. Take these home, she urges.  I will...

But home... that's such a fuzzy concept for me right now.  Is it here? There? Is it where I live and love, or where I once lived and loved?

Mushrooms, sausages, fish, breads, cakes... All very Polish, but with an eye to the changing palate, asking for organic, for more greens, vegetables...

I blurt out -- this is why I look forward to spending time here -- so I can line my pantry shelf with foods from here!

And now we're in that glorious sunshine again, walking, walking, catching up as best we can, all the way to her favorite cafe, just by the Old Town...


... where we settle in for a coffee and a Polish cheesecake with sour cherries.


The hours pass too quickly. But that's okay! I'm here now and I'll be back in the summer and perhaps in most maybe even all seasons. We part ways and I turn toward that sun drenched Old Town.


Outside? Really? People are eating outside without heat lamps? It's like seeing shorts in Wisconsin when the thermometer passes 40F.





And now I'm at the Wrzenie Swiata (World Upheaval) bookstore/cafe, drinking fruit tea -- there is no tea per se in the glass, just fruits: raspberries, oranges, lemons doused with hot water. It's refreshing and delicious but I am fascinated by the conversation at the table next to mine -- a Polish literary agent discusses how hard it is to get American authors to travel to Poland.
They will sell maybe a couple of thousand books, so not a lot by their standard. They'll ask for travel costs -- sometimes demanding business class, and really even then, they know they'll sell ten times as many books if they just go to New York.

The cafe is one of those that is in the neighborhood of my Apartment and I think -- the list of these "nearby" cafes is getting very long!


Ah, the Apartment! Where am I with this horrible space?
Well, I sit down again with Pani Karolina at Vincent's and she outlines her proposal.


We talk. We consider the possibilities.
We walk...


And now we part ways as well. This is what visits to Warsaw are like -- eventually I part ways.

My sister fixes one of my favorite dishes from my childhood -- white borscht. It's made with fermented rye flour and garlic and (in our case) kefir. With boiled quail eggs on the side.

Delicious tastes of home.


I'll be in Paris tomorrow. My next post will be from there.


  1. Oh,the farmers' market looks amazing! Safe travels!

  2. Bookstore cafe... cool!

    Farmers Market reminds me of pre-Easter experiences at Buffalo's Broadway Market... where the person at the first booth I went to addressed me in Polish, then switched to English when she saw how baffled I was. Great food to be had there, as I recall.


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