Life in Poland

Nature Calls

As I mentioned awhile back, my living quarters when I first came to Poland were less than desirable – the archives room of a PZU office building in the Village – unless you like that kind of a thing. Also, previously mentioned was my kitchen/bathroom situation – I shared a bathroom and kitchen with all of PZU which was less than desirable too, unless you are an extreme people person and you like that kind of a thing. If you need a refresher, click here.

imageI shared my bathroom with all PZU, until one day when they informed me that the bathroom was out of order, but not to worry, it would be repaired later that day…and as I was new to Poland and to plumbing problems, I believed them. My neighbors downstairs (the maintenance man and his family) joked that I could use their bathroom, but when it turned out that the bathroom would not be repaired in one day, the offer evaporated. OK, there was another toilet for use in the building for PZU employees. It was far away – not a problem when you really got to go, except for one problem, it was locked after 4 pm and no amount of begging could persuade anyone in charge that my need for the key was legit.

So, there I was left with no toilet and no shower and not knowing how long it would be. Great.

The best part was that no one cared. When I explained my plight at school and asked for some assistance in resolving the issue, I was met with helpless shrugs of the shoulder. Finally, the Principal said he would “take care of it”. If you want to know what “I will take care of it” really means in the mouth of this Principal, I can tell you.  It means: I will forget about this problem as soon as you leave this room and never think about it again. When you ask me about it in another week, I will act as if I am hearing it for the first time.

Now that I think about it, it really burns me up that they treated me like that, but on the other hand, it gave Misiu an opportunity to come to my rescue, first by offering me a place to get washed up and second by making sure my bathroom got repaired.

On a positive note, I made a nice friend – the night shift gas station attendant who was very generous with the WC key.

PS Kielbasa Stories has a new follower. Welcome akwarelia! Thank you for joining us and thank you for reading.

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  • Reply
    June 14, 2010 at 6:10 pm

    Hi, Chris. :)Thank you very much. I'm very glad that I can read about your experiences in our country. I think that living in Poland could be exciting, but full of challenges for people from other countries. As well as for all of us.Best regards from Wrocław. 🙂

  • Reply
    June 14, 2010 at 10:22 pm

    Now that I think of it, I had a few American teachers from Peace Corps when I was in high school and then in college. They lived in an adapted classroom with tall ceilings and windows and not very cozy. I wonder just how miserable their beginnings were. I remember them not being very happy at first, and they were young, 21 years old or so, straight from college. I shutter at the thought. Kudos to you guys for being so brave and persistent. If I were them, I'd probably turn around and board the first plane back to the U.S. I knew one American couple who did just that after the husband was assaulted and their flat broken into in two separate incidents.

  • Reply
    Titania yng Nghymru
    June 15, 2010 at 8:44 pm

    awww, bless you Chris, sorry to hear you had tough beginnings in poland, btw, what year was it when u came to poland? the living standards should have improved by now ;)and how come u lived on the pzu premises?every cloud has a silver lining, they say… u surived and u met your Misiu 😀 brave girl! 😉

  • Reply
    June 16, 2010 at 1:42 pm

    Akwarelia – Thanks for the greetings.Aneta – Thanks for the kudos. Some days (even now) I'm not so brave or persistent and I think about going \”home\”, where ever that is.There was a Peace Corps worker in the Village after me and they could not house him in my room at PZU because it was below even P.C. standards, if that tells you something. I think the P.C. doesn't send people to Poland anymore because you are officially to well-off.Titania – It was a little more than 10 years ago. Who knows why I was housed at PZU? I think that it was cheapest place for the school. They also proposed me another room which I rejected but I'll describe it another time.And of course the best part of the whole ordeal was Misiu, that is true!

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