Wroclaw Museum and the Malinowski’s

In the morning we both did some work and then headed out to the new Wroclaw Museum which had been recommended to us. It was basically a history of Poland and in particular Wroclaw from the time between the two world wars up through the present day, presented with models like the home below of the times and many articles and artifacts from each time period. 

Box car representing the “repatriation” of the Wroclaw area with Poles from Eastern Poland (a forced movement to get them out of land the Russians wanted) and also the related movement out of everyone and everything German. Three millions Germans were forced to leave Lower Silesia and while some got on trains, others walked. Many died along the way in the winter weather and many of the rest died not long after reaching Dresden in the Fire Bombing. 

I had read about the war destruction in this area, reports range from 50 to 80 percent of Wroclaw was destroyed. Then Russians removed equipment and even bricks from some of the buildings for their own use. The Poles forced to move here were left with a lot of rubble to live in. And driving around the city you can’t help but remember that this was under Russia for years, the reminder being in the Soviet style buildings from the 1950-70’s.  But I did not really remember well the solidarity movement, Lech Walesa and the resistance to communism and that it lasted until the end of the 1980’s. That’s when Wroclaw’s future began to look up.  Picture below is Lech Walesa speaking in Wroclaw. 

The cafeteria

On the way back we saw the Church of St Elizabeth of Hungary and thought that the steeple which was most likely rebuilt this way after the war, seemed to be made to look like a bombed out steeple. We wonder if that was the intention in creating this metal framework only on a brick building.

And balcony where Hitler once spoke at the Monopol Hotel – made all the more poignant after visiting the history museum.

We walked the 2 ½ miles back to our apartment, rested an hour and were taken to Janusz and Hanna’s house first for “lunch” which includes plates of meats, a big bowl of herring (my favorite!), salad, bread, cheeses.  

We then got a tour of the house and gardens. They built this house over a period of some time while they lived in a small finished area – house of their dreams (and mine!). It’s just beautiful with amazing features. Can’t go into all that so here are just a couple of pictures. 

Hanka is the indoor designer and Janusz planted each item in the garden himself and can tell you what every tree, flower and shrub is. The yard even includes an endangered Metasequoia (Dawn Redwood) from China. I think that one is one he said he grew from a cutting he took from a botanical garden and its beautiful.

Then came the hot dinner! All prepared by Hanka including the dessert. Lots of traditional Polish food.

And if we weren’t already spoiled by them, they are driving us to see some sights today. One more day here and then on to Dresden for two days and then home.

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