No pokusa in Poland

A week before leaving London, my old Polish housemates Marcin and Ola mentioned that they had a spare room in Gdansk.  I invited myself there for 3 days and we had a swell time catching up and playing a few games.  When they lived with me in London, I felt like we’d only just started to hit it off as friends, so it was great to hang out again.

I spent 2 nights in Warsaw and the funniest occasion came when, following the advice of my Rick Steves guidebook, I went to a chocolate shop and asked the young waitress for a pokusa.  She ran away and sent a waiter to talk to me, and it turns out that “pokusa” means something like “temptation”.  These days, “chocolate temptation” isn’t on the menu anymore and, after a brief chat, I convinced them not to shoot me.

On my last night in Warsaw, I bumped into a Danish/Lebanese guy who was meeting someone he’d found on  On a whim, I agreed to hang out with them for a bit, and afterwards we went to an amazing little bar where you could get cheap vodkas, little beers and little plates of food.  In there, we managed to hook up with 2 other random guys and 2 girls and went back to their place for more vodka and escapades.  I got home really late (or early), slept through my alarm, missed my plane and had to buy a new ticket.  That was a very fun but expensive crazy night.

These last 2 years, I’ve tried to be more of a ‘yes man’ (to try new things and meet new people) and I think I definitely succeeded in Warsaw, but next time I’ll try to do it a little more sensibly.

What did I think of the Poles?  Wonderful people.  They wear that hard eastern face, but once you talk to them (and try out a few Polish words) they’re really helpful and nice.  They’re extremely proud of their ability to stand strong in the face of their past sufferings.  They know how to resist and rebuild.  The 3 biggest things in Poland are: Pope John Paul II, Lech Walesa and vodka.

2 Responses to “No pokusa in Poland”
  1. Elliot Ramsay says:

    I like the new yes man.. maybe when i come to NYC we can play goon of fortune. All we need is a bag of cheap wine and a clothing line. Good to hear you’re up for trying new things ;)

  2. Am says:

    Gosh Nathan! it sounds like one of my epic moments!!
    glad you’re all safe and good over there! bisous

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