The Christmas Wait.

The Christmas Wait.

Tree with shadow, words on Polish flag: S-cray-oh-la in Poland

Welcome to my Poland section. I made this section to show my friends and my church the things I learned, observed, and thought during the preparation and process of my trip to Poland to teach English for a year.

2002/12/21

Waking at around 8:00, I ate some of my travel munchies, took a shower, and waited until 10:00, when I felt sure I wouldn't wake anyone. I then went up to Joanna's flat. She was surprised to see me. I told her a little bit about my trip, and we got into a discussion of grace. I mentioned an illustration about conduits versus jars, and she was very pleased to hear it. I then took a taxi to the airport to meet my mother's 11:50 flight. The flight was about 40 minutes late, and my mother was not on it. I waited for two hours for her to walk through the arrivals door.

I asked the lady at tourist information where I could find an internet cafe so I could check my email. I took an overpriced taxi ride to the place she indicated (the airport didn't have an internet cafe). I there learned that the shopping center also did not contain an internet cafe. So, I took a more reasonably priced cab back to the church offices. There, I met up with the bishop, checked my email for free, and learned that my mother had not been able to get on the flight she had expected. She was to come in on Sunday's 11:50.

I was relieved that the reason I hadn't seen her was that she hadn't been there. The bishop said he would have his son drive me to the airport on Sunday.

I was disappointed, though, because I had wanted to go to the international church's service with my mother. The services at that church are in English, and it's been three months since I attended a service in English.

I had dinner at a chinese restaurant across from the church and went to bed.

2002/12/22

Sunday morning, I slept until 9:30, got ready, and went downstairs to wait for the bishop's son. The bishop loaned me a mobile phone, because his son couldn't stay near the terminal very long and had to park away from the building.

I stood in the crowd and watched the arrivals doors. The plane arrived, and I heard many of the people coming out talking about lost luggage, so I waited until the flight listing cycled off the sign and then waited another twenty minutes for her to appear, thinking she might be in the lost luggage office, or in a queue outside the lost luggage office.

I finally abandoned the vigil and went back to the church office. The bishop allowed me to check my email, but there was nothing new. We ate lunch together (it was very good!), and sat for a while talking.

I went back to my guest room and waited, pacing the floor and listening to the classical music station on my radio.

I went to bed early.

2002/12/23

Last night the temperature plummetted to around -13°C/8.6°F. I woke twice to add another blanket to my bed.

The bishop later told me that the office building has a system that increases the heating as the temperature drops, but it takes about two hours to make a change, so if the temperature drops rapidly, the heating can't keep up. By morning, it was again toasty.

I checked my email, found that my mother was planning to try the 11:50 flight on Monday, and had breakfast. Or maybe it was the other way around. Either way, I did both. I then went up and talked to the bishop. I was about to leave, and maybe do a little shopping before my journey back to the airport, when the bishop's phone rang.

It was my mother, and she was in Warsaw. She had a ride but needed directions. So, I gave her directions and waited half an hour in my room (the driving time from the airport). I then went down to watch for her. After about ten or fifteen minutes, I went inside to warm up a little. When I went back down, she was in front of the English College building heading for a phone box. I waved to her, but it was several seconds before she saw me. We got her luggage up to the guest rooms, and then we had a little time to relax and catch up on adventures.

We had lunch with the bishop at a Cuban restaurant, caught a train, and got back to Iława in time for dinner. After dinner, we unpacked our suitcases, talked a while, and went to bed.

2002/12/24

Mother and I walked into town and bought some groceries. I showed her where the places I've mentioned in my log are, and we walked along the lakes on the way home. In the evening, we went to the Christmas eve service.

After the service, we ate dinner with the pastor's family. We had eight dishes, and the only meat was fish. It was a scrumtious meal, and we ate a lot.

After dinner, we sang some Christmas carols and opened gifts. The pastor's daughter played some songs on the piano. It was a fun evening.

After that, we came back to our floor and relaxed until almost midnight, when I suggested we should get some sleep.

2002/12/25

I slept in today. Then I lay awake with my eyes closed for a while. Finally, I decided I should get up before noon, and I braved the cold, which didn't seem all that cold, though it was. It was 10:15. I knocked on my mother's room and found she was awake, so I fixed us breakfast. During breakfast, Kris told us that the service would start at 11:00.

It was cold in the chapel, and I hadn't put on my long-johns, so by the time the service was over, my hip was aching, but it was good otherwise. I still have no idea what's going on most of the time, but that should change some soon. Kris wants to make sure we get to doing our English-Polish lessons, because he wants to improve his English. We just haven't had time yet.

After the service, we had lunch in his flat. It was very good. When lunch was over, Kris had to go to his other parish. We got to watch some American news, though.

It is now 15:39, and we are relaxing in our quarters. The temperature outside my window is -12°C/10.4°F.

Merry Christmas, everyone!

 

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