Sitting in the kitchen: December part 2

Hi, there! Welcome in 2017! But remember, we are still in December for a while.  Currently you have one leg in December, and the second here in 2017 – until you will finish read this post. White winter right now. Air from the North Pole is here. This time for sure! The weather is not very freezy to be frank, is about minus ten at a day and in a nightime is something like minus eightteen. Snow is beautiful and fresh, my dog is very keen on running and playing outside. She is a big fan of freeze, and the dog I had before also was. While sun is shining snow glitters in the sun rays. I adore the sound of crispy snow, especially I love to walk and hear it in a nighttime. The sound is like no other! ( Not to mention, that more snow and better visibility in the darkness, that means it isn’t a problem to notice a boar). The pond here is actually iced over, many people were skating there today – my dog was in the rapture of it. She found the weather rapturous at all! ( And I have been snapping photos). A glorious brain- wave! I had. Although I’m not absolutely sure… Do I really want my tv set ??? Imagine a homely, simply life without it! Or only you own it for watching old, carefully selected by yourself, DVD movies? Maybe I will do that… By now for example, whenever I have turned on this device, I must look at terrible and overwhelming ” Warning!”, ” Please remain at home!” and ” The Weather Alarm!” – all with printed characters and bold type, in every Polish channel, I think… You know, the freeze is a normal thing during winter season and that is not the reason to start the panic. I want to live my life. I mean to say I want to live my life with no bold type. ( Not literally, of course ). I need to be close to nature and I do know by myself how to live when the weather has gotten freezy.  This is going too far! I really should hide the tv set somewhere in the house. My wintry hat!

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For that matter, this is the warmest and most comfy hat I ever had! I purchased this funny hat in a supermarket  four years ago and I still wear and love it. It looks like an acrylic yarn, although the lining is very warm. Along with good shoes and long puffer coat it’s enough for a stroll in  these creepy cold nights. Let’s talk Christmasy food at last!

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Maybe I should rather post on something Maudy Thursday ( Donut’ s Day) and Mardi Gras, because it is been a while since Christmas, but I want to finish my story. So, we eat a carp, I have mentioned in my previous post. Then, the soup is a must, I mean to say, two soups. In Poland some of us are in the habit of eating ” barszcz” ( bortsch) – a beetroot soup with small dumplings inside. In other families they eat a mushrooms soup, but I’m not big on it. We are having barszcz with uszka for Christmas Eve . ( ” Uszka” – small ears, although that is not my sense of humour, I must say, that these dumplings filled with mushrooms are delicious) . Then, also awesome, “pierogi z kapustą i z grzybami” ( pierogies/dumplings stuffed with sauerkraut and dried mushrooms). And I have to mention, that these mushrooms must be mostly dried boletuses. Oh no, I forgot, before “pierogi” we  already ate a carp – that is correct! Go on! Right now, giving a presents!!! Then, sweets, cakes, coffee etc. At least in my household. But you can meet a Pole who will tell you another story, about compeletely other dishes and habits. Here is also popular ” ryba w galarecie”  what means a fish in a jelly, but this is not my favourite dish. Or ” śledż pod pierzyną” , very popular here in  the Masovia region ( a herring under a feather bed). This is a herring’s salad with creamy sauce – quite yummy, but my mother does not like it. I think very Polish tradition is to live in a multi-cultural society. I’m always very surprised, while I meet the opinion, that Polish culture is homogeneous. ( Popular belief in the U.S.) Absolutely not a truth! Oh, noI I forgot to tell you about speaking animals… This is lovely tradition from Polish rural areas, that in the Christmas Eve at midnight, pets and animals in the household are speaking with a human voice! Cows, dogs, hens, cats, donkey… This is also the custom of sharing wishes with them. See you soon and in another era, again!And wait for my photos, because these are taken with my vintage analogue camera.

Sitting in the kitchen: December, part 1

Merry Christmas
Myspace and Orkut Comments from www.webpagecollection.com

This is late in the night and I’m sitting in my kitchen, waiting for the apple crumble. The strong smell is all around me and is adorable and extremely cosy. That is wintertime I like most! And I can hear the voice of the train from the other shore of the river. I love to hear a train through a night hours. ( I guess I will wake up at midday). I am an owl person all my life. Yesterday we experienced something really rare here, I mean a hurricaine. The name of it is Barbara, although it seems like it is gone by now. In Warsaw, where I live, it was very strong, very annoying and it was heavy rainy, in addition. Unluckily, I was outside while rain started to fall. It was very short and very heavy rain. The five minutes it was enough to leave me completely wet, my shoes were also wet as well, so this is even weird I have not a flu today.
So, Christmas is over, but we still have the Christmas season in some sense and I am going to tell you about a Christmasy food, here in Poland. Thus, the first issue is the carp’s problem. I don’t know about other countries, but here is the custom – and perhaps the religious rule – that during a Christmas Eve we should not eat a meat. In Poland Christmas Holidays begin at 24 December, in a Christmas Eve, unlike f.ex. in the UK, where people start with that at 25 December in the morning. Here is also popular to “wait until the first star will visible onto the sky” – you cannot eat before. In my home we are not in the habit of waiting for the first star, although we eat a carp. ( I eat meat, but not much and not often). A carp is a must in Poland for this time! The problem is that some people have been killing these fishes by themselves ( stupid and cruel ritual, not connected with religion). You can easily buy living carp in every supermarket before Christmas and they always have these creepy customers. I do condemn it and cannot imagine this idiotic custom in my household. We usually are buying fillets and I bake a casserrole with leaks, beer and cream. This casserrole is my own idea, the traditional way is to make it on a frying pan with breeding. I remember the interesting idea of some wildlife defenders here… They went to the market and bought all of those carps, then they did let loose them to the ponds next to this market.I was very surprised before I had known about this event, because I was observing that the shores of those ponds are overcrowded by aglers… I was wondering what is going on. Looks like aglers have another point of view. C’est la vie!
Well,I see my crumble is ready ! The next part is coming soon ( on bortsch, animals speaking with human’s voices, Vienna Apfelstrudel my grandmother did, and pierogies filled with cabbage and wood mushrooms ).

One boar open sleigh

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J. Chełmoński ” Kuropatwy na śniegu” source -flickr.com

 

No snow this year.

I think we should forget  the old times and white Christmas, because we already have not been having snow for several years. Seems like we will travel to the mountains in the future, while we will want to see how does it look … That wind from the North Pole did not come. As you have known from my older post, I was expecting it because of the weather report, which turned out to be not true and rain was falling all the time, instead of freeze. And I saw the boar! ( And I saw  him again!). He was very massive, similar for a mammoth! Very similar for a mammoth! ( Please, believe me guys, because I am not kidding and this is true)… The fur on the top of him was sticking up, so I guess he  was frightened ( really not good). In my opinion, it was rather old, male wild- boar, who is accustomed to walk alone. I noticed him late in the evening, or in the night even, it was about midnight… Last Monday or Tuesday – it does not matter… The matter is that he feels good here, very good I see, and it looks like he will visit my close neighbourhood very often. He simply likes us… He is like a mammoth! From the other side, is quite friendly and calm. He was running not so fast, from the spot where our post office is, and it is next to the park… Not so fast, along the kindergarten fence, and, believe me, the sight is very unusual, both like a dream and really livening up! He passed by close to us and I am still alive and my silly dog too. ( She started woofing a minute later, and luckily while he was closer was staring at him only). Once you meet a boar you feel yourself as a primeval human – like a member of the Flinstones family at least! Then I heard loudy screaming… Men were screaming ” Dzik! Dzik!” ( it means boar in Polish). It was from that place he was running to. They were really scared, and later one woman told me, that these boars are in the habit of wandering here also in the morning. Good for snapping some photos, although I cannot promise for sure… Ha, ha! Wild – boar!

Well, guys, while Christmas is ending it is still not too late to say Merry Christmas everyone! I planned this post to be on Polish Christmasy customs and I know I  keep you hanging on, but I must told you about boar first. Picture a wild boar, who is in a Santa sleigh instead of a reindeers. He is stopping next to you and speaks with human voice: ” Ho- ho! Merry Christmas, dear!”. I am not big on Polish traditions, to be frank… I might tell tou rather more about my grandma kitchen, which was with strong Austrian influences. She had plastic Christmas tree from Vienna and all the furnitures were from Vienna, too… Tomorrow I ‘ll be back with that!

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J. Fałat Winter Landscape source : przewodnicypokrakowie.pl

 

P.S. If you are new on here, and you are not afraid of a boar you might like this story, and also that story. Enjoy!

Wind from the North Pole is coming

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I have seen the weather report and they said that! Air from the North Pole is just around the corner… This time we use to say that Christmas is just around the corner, or, you know, Santa Claus is just around the corner, but it seems like freezy wind is coming first… I have already got is today, here in Warsaw. Such chilly weather! I went strolling with my lovely dog and I have absolutely enough… They said in tv that this week every next day will be much colder, and look, today  is Monday! I don’t want even think about Friday or Saturday… Spooky! They said that in Friday the temperature will -15, but I hope not in Warsaw. ( Here in Poland the place where the temperature is always lower is north-eastern Poland, that means Masuria and The Białowieża Wood, and the town Suwałki. And while someone has been said ” Minus 20 is coming!” a popular answer is : ” It must be about Suwałki, calm down!” )

I have been in Suwałki one time and a several years ago. In July – was cold, as well.

We are in the anticipation of Christmas and I already finished my book about Mariacki Church in Kraków, so my next post will on it. I was thinking about this site and I have decided to write more about Polish heritage,art, history and about my old dream of being transported to another era. (And also about houses, but rather modern houses and interiors). Imagine, you are in Cracow for the winter trip and snow is deeper and deeper and then you are in another era… Seems like in the Middle Ages. In the Middle Ages in Kraków, in the Main Square! See you there next time….