Krakow – I would like to look for some memories
When still working, I closely cooperated with our office in Kraków. I made friends and I started to love this city with its huge market place, the Rynek. When Easyjet came up with direct flights from Basel to Kraków, I decided to go on the road again.
The flight – early in the morning and fully booked
At 6:50 and on time, onboarding goes on. I sit in the back and a nice lady in her 50ies with a perfect German accent joins me. A young student follows with a joyful “bonjour” – also a perfect French accent. Around him friends that also speak French. I wonder, why they fly to Kraków. I also hear a lot of Polish on this chilly day in November.
With the photographer, we exchange about feeling like a stranger
With the lady next to me, I am soon entrenched in a deep conversation. She is a photographer, lives in Freiburg and flies to Poland for the funeral of her dad. This is sad. She has lived in Freiburg for 20 years now and her daughter studies cultural history. We both know, what living in a foreign country means. She has emigrated from Poland to Germany and has felt reluctance and being different. Also my parents have emigrated to Switzerland in the fifties – and yes, I did not feel welcome here as a German girl and adapted to speak High German like a Swiss. Even today, the Swiss are embarrassed, when I switch to my mother tongue which is Berlinese (the father tongue is the dialect of Basel, so no one notices this “defect”, until I switch languages).
Research on cement?
The young man sitting with us is a student. He writes a doctorate thesis on cement. Research about cement? I thought that cement is pretty well defined and there is nothing to change about the recipe. But there is… his task is to enhance one component from 30 to 50 percent to make it more durable. He is from Kraków and writes his thesis in Heidelberg and Lausanne. With his friends he plans to spend a weekend in Kraków.
Sharing photos from Mongolia
We talk about traveling. “I would like to go to Mongolia”, the lady-photographer says – her name is Anna. “Well, if you do not mind the photos of an amateur…”, I say and take out my iPad with my photos from Mongolia. And together, the three of us travel virtually from Khövsgöl lake and the taiga all the way south to the desert of Gobi, while the plane starts to lose height to land in the fog in Kraków.
Good-bye – our roads will now separate again
This was a great flight. I love unexpectedly making friends – I think that Anna and I will stay in touch. To the young student, I wish much success for the doctorate thesis. Our roads will now separate again. An hour later, I check in at the hotel Wawel, get my code to access the internet, and have a free coffee in the cosy orangerie to write this blog.