Tuesday, June 29, 2010

I made it all the way to Poland and am very glad to be here. The hotel where I'm staying is full of people diagnosed with MS from many walks of life and different countries of origin. As an American I find myself in the minority with most hotel guests coming from various Canadian provinces. We're share a common goal that is to get testing and treatment for our illness (whatever you might call it).

After I arrived (I should say "we" since my husband is joining in this unusual adventure) I found out that I had a free day to roam about Poland. Sharing a taxi with another couple, we travelled to Krakow to explore the city where Copernicus studied for some years. We meandered around the old, historic part of the city which left me quite speechless at moments.

If only to imagine that Copernicus may have walked down the same street that I was on made me feel very humble. Chopin, also from Poland originally, appears loved by the city with signs bearing his name on every corner---I think to advertise concerts. (The language is pretty tough for me to decipher.)

The central plaza or piazza if-you-will was in good condition as Krakow was spared the fate of destruction (and rebuilding) that most other Polish cities endured. There were other tourists milling about but most spoke (and looked) Polish. We enjoyed sharing streets with people native to the country if only to feel less like tourists than adventurists (that might not be a word in the dictionary but it sounds right to me)!

After returning by taxi with Derek driving and juggling incoming calls on three cell phones, I was glad to relax in the hotel for a bit of time. I met up with guests who had undergone the procedure called venography to doctors and "liberation" to others, sitting in on their talks about being angioplastied or stented. Acting like a sponge, I tried to soak in as much info as possible in order to make intelligent decisions on how (or if) I should proceed.

Although the journey has been enjoyable thus far, I am always aware of my purpose in coming to this distant land. As I said in an earlier post I've wanted to trace the roots of my family but I would have likely begun in Germany if given a choice (though not the tremendous Frankfurt airport that I had to pass through before flying to Poland)! So I'm very glad to be here but haven't forgotten about my travel baggage of potential medical treatment.

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