January 5, 2013

"Super Secret Trip"

I was recently presented the opportunity to go to a country that I have been hoping to go to since we got here.  Not for myself.  Don't get me wrong, I like traveling.  I want to go EVERYWHERE.  But if I didn't have loved ones that had a vested interest in this country, it wouldn't have made my list most likely...my HAVE TO GO OR ELSE list.  But alas, I do love them.  So when this opportunity popped up, I jumped on it.

Poland.  I have mentioned my dear friend Lajo in previous blogs, both here and on the other blog.  Her family is like my family...whether they like it or not.  I adore her side of the family and I love her husbands family.  I just adore them.  And I like to think that they adore me.  Well I don't mention last names on my blogs, but I will just say there are some "...ski"s involved.  Very Polish.  So I wanted to go to Poland and find the boys something, find Milf (that's her name, I don't care what anyone else says).  I was also able to find a couple of things for St. Babs, which shocked me a little bit, but it was still good.

The whole point of this trip was to buy Polish Pottery.  It's kind of a big thing.  Polish Pottery.  It's very popular and there are all of these outlets where we went.  Plus...well...it was Poland.

So.  The trip started by us leaving very early in the morning and heading to the Sparkasse in town to get Euro and into the bakery for breakfast.  I somehow managed to lock us out of the car.  Awesome.  We sent Kodie and Taylor to the house to go get the extra key.  I am a genius.  Luckily it wasn't far.  So we get on the road.  I can't remember who started driving lol, all I remember is that at some point I'm driving (I believe after the rest stop).  I drive til Dresden which is where we stopped for gas.  I didn't lock anyone out.  YAY!! Denise took over driving because we were close to the Polish border and I don't have an international license.  We get into town and find a great shop.  We went into several, made some good purchases.  Things begin to get interesting right about here.

We go into an Antique shop.  I'm in love, there are so many amazing antiques! I'm mentally making a list of the things I want to buy.  Then I see a little shrunk type thing...however because it sounds creepier, I am calling it a closet.  A closet of horrors.  I look in and I literally stop breathing...I can't move...I just stare.

Allllll nazi memorabilia.  We're talking rings, medals, SS stuff, swastika stuff...Hitler specific stuff...helmets, sharp stabby knives with swastika's on them...just...wow.  I know that there is a lot of history involving Poland and the nazi's...but it just felt very...wrong.  You don't really see stuff like that in Germany.  I'm sure there is some here, but it's not on display in a little pottery/antique shop.

So Rachel and I left the building and we were doing that weird "super awkward laugh" thing...we didn't even know how to react or what to think.  It honestly made me feel ill as opposed to historical.

The next shop was a great pottery shop where I made several of my discoveries and purchases.  After that we hit one more shop where I bought several more pieces, then we headed to lunch.

Food was AMAZING.  I ate perogies.  In Poland.  Kind of awesome.  I also drank an "organic on tap" Polish beer.  It's right up there with my favorite Croatian beer, it was SO good.  Delicious and great service, plus it was very well priced.

After that we went back to the first pottery shop and picked up a few things I had initially seen and wasn't sure about but decided I wanted.  Then we began the journey home.

Denise drove until Dresden, then Maryanne took over.  This is where things get...we'll go with funny, now that it's over.

7 American women, 2 Polish men, and 2 German Polizei park at a gas station...

That's the start of a pretty great joke, right?

No.  It's the ending of a pretty traumatic event haha.

So everything is going fine, it's raining but it's not too terrible.  So we think.  The speed limit was around 130km there and we were pushing 80km at the most...just taking it easy.  All of a sudden we were HYDROPLANING.  We were all over the place, literally swerving across the lanes, fishtailing everywhere....it was awful.  We were all kind of yelling, Maryanne was silent but trying to regain control over the vehicle.  Finally she was able to stop. In the fast lane.  On the autobahn.  What I haven't mentioned is that in our journey across the lanes we were rear ended.  By a diesel.  On the autobahn.  They pulled over off to the right so we eventually were able to make it over to them.

I cannot even explain how lucky we were.  There is a scratch on each side of the rear fender and the rear right light cover looks like it's popped off a little.  That is all.  We are all fine, our necks and shoulders hurt but it's from tensing up.  Denise went into shock, Maryanne did too I think...I got an adrenaline rush that made me shake like a crackhead, Taylor and Kodie were pretty freaked out...and Rachel was just glad she had taken her anxiety meds early enough that they had kicked in.  Luckily I had as well.  So oddly, Rachel and I were the most calm.  That NEVER happens lol.  We get out to talk to the diesel drivers.  Great.  Polish men who speak next to no English.  Okay.  So I get out my handy dandy iPhone and translate "Are you okay" with my translator app.  They nod and hand it back, asking the same question basically (it's amazing what hand gestures can do).  I nod and translate "scared" then grab my heart and scream lol.  He nods and points to the two of them, grabs his heart and screams too lol.  It was like a super twisted game of charades.

The Polizei show up.  They speak zero English.  And zero Polish.  So we are 3 different nationalities who cannot effectively speak to one another.  LOVELY haha.  The Polizei suggests we drive down the road 5km.  He leads, we all follow, very slowly.  He pulls into a gas station parking lot and pulls under the diesel fuel station with the covers over it - it's still raining.  I leave the girls to do the talking since I was in the backseat at the time, and I go chain smoke.  Seriously I was so...ARGH.  It took about an hour but finally everything was all hashed out, papers were filed, fault was deemed (ours), a fine was charged (35euro) and then we were free to go.  The diesel driver shook our hands which was really nice.  I know that truck drivers get shaken about this stuff just as much as the passengers in the car involved.  It is something they fear greatly.  Or any of the good ones at least.  I know all of this stuff because my ex-Step-Dad was a truck driver the entire time I lived with him, from 7 to 21.  I know a good bit about diesels and truck drivers.  I know a good bit about the lifestyle, the mindset.  The laws.  The tricks about getting around weight limits.  Oh, I know how to "adjust" log books back when they were hand written.  I know allllllll sorts of fun stuff.  I was worried about them too, and I think they appreciated it.

Denise was intent on driving but I didn't think it was a good idea.  She was still pretty shaken.  I mean, it was her car...and it was just scary in general.  So I stepped up.  I remember saying, "I got this." lol.  And I did, I was totally fine.  I drove very slow because everyone in the van was a bit traumatized.  And we made it home safe and sound.

All in all, it was a great experience.  I can even see the positive in the accident.  Who survives an accident, on the autobahn...involving a diesel? That is a definite experience I will never forget.  We lived, we're awesome and so so so lucky.

Plus, I went to POLAND!!! One more country on my list.  I want to go back when I'm healed and spend more time there, perhaps overnight.  See more than just the pottery places and the food place (which really was delightful).  The company was great...everything was just wonderful...except that last bit.  I'd really rather not experience that again, once was enough.

So that's my bit trip and adventure.  I am exhausted beyond belief so I'm going to bid adieu and hit the hay after I add a few photos here for your viewing pleasure :)

Something in Polish :)

GIANT Polish Pottery

Walking further into town

The pottery tree!! This place was cool.

I don't know why, but I really liked this house.  A lot.

Taylor being weird...in front of the pottery tree


Taylor with Marilyn Monroe outside the scary store with the closet.

A Polish Pottery palm tree!! those are all plates.  So cool!

Taylor and I at the restaurant

I'm not going to lie, even though I knew this was a toothpick, the word threw me off big time...

Taylor's Polish Coke.

Myself and my glorious beer!!

My pierogies...in Poland...it excited me greatly.

My Greek Salad...in Poland...tryin' to get some extra culture.

Apple fritters with Kiwi, icecream, and hot fudge sauce...Taylor and I shared this...ohhhh yum

So that's all.  I HIGHLY recommend a trip to Poland, for pottery or just to wander about.  It's beautiful and completely amazing.  I will be going back and I will just pray very hard that there aren't any accidents on the way home.  Cause that was terrible.

I hope everyone enjoyed my blog and I hope that my J-Boys and Milf know how much I love them...I wouldn't do things like this for just anyone!! <3 <3


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