Saturday, August 29, 2009
The 1st Stop of the Summer
Well, it has been a long time for me to write and update the Wayfaring
Writer. Traveling around the world during the months of June, July
and August limited my computer access. Plus, I really just didn’t
want to sit in front of the computer for a couple hours wasting
valuable time instead of being with friends and family. However, now
being back in Tokyo, I have a lot of time to think back and reflect
I left Tokyo on June 13 for my around the world flight stopping in
Warsaw, New York, Philadelphia, St. Louis, Dallas and Kansas. Then
returning to Tokyo to add up 18,940 miles or 30,480 Km. But there
would be some changes in there and adjustments to my plan and more
miles added to my frequent flyer miles.
Finally I arrived in Warsaw after a 15-hour flight and landing at 9:30pm I was met by my good friend Mr. G at the airport with a warm LECH, just the way I like them. We jumped in with my old taxi driver, Marek and headed of to change so I could make it to the Schaffner wedding. With little planning and a map. We were able to find the wedding hall and begin
what would be the first night of craziness for me and would last two
months. Seeing friends and surprising those who didn’t know I was
coming was a great way to begin the summer and kick off the 1st of my
4 weddings for the summer. After partying till the wee morning hours
of 5 and 6 I finally woke to find myself on the floor between two
friends past out. What a way to start the summer.
The following days I met up with several friends from ASW and met some
new ones. While sitting at the beer tents by the Metro Wilonowska
many faces, bodies and smiles kept walking up. Plus, the beers kept
going down. Somewhere in the evening of one of the nights I thought
it would be a good idea to go to London with one of the new teachers
from ASW. So, with my around the world trip ticket in
hand I call the airline and add London to my trip. Adding the flight
to the list cost me nickels and dimes so why not, and so began my
first jaunt and detour of my planned summer. It was only a two-day
trip but it was a good one. Saw many things I had never seen before.
It was my first trip to London (I will write about London in next post) and won’t be the last.
However, after the trip I realized I did a bad thing. I missed out having those two days with Mr. G. I look back now and wish I had my thinking cap on instead of my drinking cap. Sorry G!! I will make it up to you when you make it to Japan.
I returned from London in time to get ready for Tim and Ania’s
wedding. We had a couple of days to prepare Tim for his walk down
the aisle. Several friends gathered at the Eagles stadium for Tim’s
American football game. Yes, they play in Poland. We had so much fun
together and getting back together with those people who are so close
to me. It was wonderful seeing Tim’s daughters Ali, Gilli and Katie.
I couldn’t believe how big they had gotten and how tall Ali was. She
was just as tall as me and now she is taller for sure. I hadn’t seen
them in years. Sitting with them at Tim’s football game was so much
fun. Talking to them about school and Kansas felt like I had not even
left Warsaw. Other friends later joined the gathering at the football
game and it turned into a great day.
For this wedding I would be standing in front of the guest as a
groomsman and the reader of the Paul’s first letter to the
Corinthians. The wedding went of so well and it was truly beautiful.
Leading up to the wedding I had moved in with Solli and spent so much
time hanging out with him and Andrew. We wondered the city and went
to some old places I used to frequent while living in Poland. We were
out to the early morning hours again and got back in time to get some
rest before the 5pm wedding. I knew I needed some sleep because Tim and
Ania’s party would be another all nighter. I prepared myself for
getting less than 6 hours asleep and would continue that for the rest
of the summer. My body was feeling the pressure and the results of
what was now 9 days of boozing, with another wedding to come the
Fletcher and Iza were having their wedding making my third Polish
wedding in three consecutive weekends. This is not an easy thing to
do. I don’t know if you have ever been to a Polish wedding but for
those who have you know how long and crazy they can get. So, for
those who don’t know, let me give you an idea. To get straight to the
point there is a lot of Vodka.
Usually it’s a given that there will
be 1 bottle of vodka for every person at the party. However, since
all three were mixed Polish weddings there was a bottle for every two
people, give or take a few. To go along with the vodka there is more
food than you can imagine. It just keeps coming out all night and
then usually stops with some soups at 5am. Oh, I forgot to mention
the beer. There is plenty of beer, dancing and singing and stops at
5,6 or 7ish. Depending on the couple and often there will be one of
two grandma and grandpas still there.
So much more happened and I hope these photos will give an idea of who
else I got to see and spend time with. Unplanned BBQ’s with friends
like, Iain, Alex, Bas and so many others made my trip back to Warsaw
worth every Zloty, Yen or Dollar I spent and the time it took to get
there. I know there were so many other people I wish I could have
seen but it was so hard to be everywhere at once. So, to those I
missed I say I hope all is well and we have to do better at staying in touch. Miss you all.