Twelve months have passed since the moment of my departure from Poland and my heart was filled with warmth as I viewed the exhibition “Discover Poland” at the Cultural Center. It showed the beauty, history, culture, and economic accomplishments of Poland.
We were able to see the cities of Poland. It is important to mention that many Polish cities are older than the country itself. According to Alexandrian geographer Claudius Ptolemy, the town of Calisia existed in the second century, and the country of Poland began to form in the 10th century. In later years, large cities formed at the initiative of powerful magnates, like Zamość shown on the first picture with its renaissance town hall. The next photograph is the Church of Peace in Jaworze. It is hard to believe that this building formed from wood and clay in the gothic style has a baroque interior. From southeast, we move north. We can admire the harbor in Szczecin, the modern business center, as well as remember the past in the ramparts of King Chrobry. It is impossible not to stop in Malbork, the fortified stronghold of the Teutonic knights. The capitals – old Krakow and the present Warsaw, hold a separate chapter in the history of Poland’s cities. Then, there is Lodź which quickly developed in the late 19th and early 20th century with its many examples of Art Nouveau in architecture. Next was Poznań, popular for its inter-national commerce. Then there was Wroclaw, a city of many cultures. A statement made about the royal city of Kraków says that if “the homeland disappeared, in its monuments one can see the kaleidoscope of Polish history, changes, ways of thinking, and human achievements across the centuries”. It is hard to disagree, looking at the Main Square of the Old City, Sukiennice, and Wawel – the royal castle overlooking Vistula River. Additional pieces of Krakow presented in the colorful pictures are Kazimierz quarters, which was the center of activity at the heart of Krakow for seven centuries. The Jews formed spiritual and economical cultures here contributing to the Polish culture. Currently, the Festival of Jewish Culture – Kazimierz brings back its old charm.