Monday, April 13, 2009

A Polish Easter for a German-American Berlin Couple

As the weather has continued to be non-stop warm and intensely blue skies, we spontaneously decided for a trip to Szcecin (Stettin) on Easter Sunday. And our idea was right: while here the city was bursting with tourists and Berliners vying for space in the sun and in front of landmarks, the train to Angermünde was full (many having headed for the cloister in Chorin or on to relatively close Baltic Sea beaches), but the little connector over the boarder and on to the former Hansa town of Stettin, now Szcecin, was basically empty, as was this charming Oder harbor town itself.
EVERYTHING except the churches was closed, with the exception of two restaurants and one cafe, all on the same terrace overlooking the river, where the Polish citizens came after church in their Easter finery for lunch or ice cream. And thank goodness for that, because we had begun to wonder if we'd be able to eat lunch anywhere at all. So the Colorado Steak House provided us with ample and quite tasty food, although the only thing Polish there was the beer, and the waitress seemed surprised that we wanted it, as Carlsberg was what they are trademarked as in that place.
We almost thought the picture taking would end, when our batteries gave out, but then near the station there was miraculously one 24-hour 7-day supermarket of sorts with the cheapest batteries I've ever found. We first bought a pack of four for 2.50 zloty, stuck them in the camera and it worked. Then we realized they had only cost us about 50 euro cents and decided to buy another pack; even if they only worked a couple of hours they'd be worth it. Well, the first two are still working today.
And it was a really very pleasant trip, hardly any people around at all, proving a devoutly Catholic country can provide a safe haven for urbanites seeking stress-free city sightseeing without encountering the mobs of their home metropolis. We may well return again.

Check out the photo documentation in the slide show here:

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