Judix2 travels to USOpen, Estonia & Poland travel blog

Chopins Heart Burial Site

Polish President's Home

Palace Square

Old Town Square

Tank Treads from Goliath

Little Insurgent Statue

Our first day in Warsaw. Warsaw's darkest days came during the Nazi occupation of World War II. The Jewish residents were forced into a tiny ghetto - they rose up and were slaughtered; then the Polish residents rose up and they were slaughtered! An estimated 800,000 residents were dead! The Poles did not give up, they decided to rebuild and it appears they are still rebuilding! As we had stocked the fridge last evening we had breakfast in and then decided to again follow Rick Steves and his Royal Walk for Warsaw to the Palace Square and Old Town. Our first church today is Church of the Holy Cross. Composer Frederick Chopin's heart is in this church (inside one of the pillars of the nave. After 2 decades of exile in France his final wish was to have his heart brought back to his native Poland. During World War II his heart was hidden away in the countryside for safety! Moving on we saw a statue of Copernicus in front of the Polish Academy of Science - this statue was stolen by the Nazis who took it to Germany, now it's back where it belongs. We stopped for photos of Warsaw University gates and the Radziwill Palace (the Polish White House). The Warsaw Pact was signed here in 1955 creating the Cold War military alliance to rival NATO. Then we joined the herds of people ( it is Saturday so a lot of the people are local) in Palace Square and Old Town Square. There were a minimum of 5 brides and grooms - big wedding day! Palace Square and Old Town were demolished during the war and mostly rebuilt by 1956! After lunch on the Square of Old Town, we bought tickets for a 20 minute concert by a talented, lovely pianist playing Chopin tunes! Then it was off again to tour more - Cathedral of St. John the Baptist (could not go in as there was a wedding) we did find the treads from the Nazi tank 'Goliath' that drove into the church and intentionally exploded massacring the rebels. After walking along part of the old city walls and through the Barbican we started towards home. Stopping at a bakery for bread for breakfast and a bottle of wine for 'happy hour' we arrived home and collapsed. We did revive in time to wander the street looking for a dinner spot - we are both tired of Polish food so we opted for Italian. We both ha a salad with some mozzarella cheese and a glass of wine! Not very hungry after having cheese and crackers earlier! JC

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