Summer,  Thoughts,  Travel,  TravelTips

Notes From the Road: Poland

twenty two days is a heck of a length of time to take a trip. woo, boy! certainly our most ambitious to date, save for the time that we were actually vagabonds in late 2012. but this is a different story: fitting in a big summer trip before the school year starts up.

the transport:
we’ve been mostly taking buses and booking on the road a couple days before. i didn’t anticipate this much bus-riding, as buses tend to make me a bit nauseous. i look forward to train trips when they happen so i can read books and walk around in a generally unrestricted fashion. also, trains are unimpeded by the hellish poland traffic jams. but hey, when bus trips are a little faster and much cheaper, why train it?

(below, alex with the biggest doner kebap of his life in torun)

the schedule:
i planned a handful of one-nighters across poland, mostly to connect the main places i was excited for so it wouldn’t be an unusually long day of commuting, and also to see more of the country. and as it turns out, poland is a big country. i think these were a bit of a necessary evil from a travel standpoint. i do hate the quick turnarounds and feeling rushed to see as much as i can of these places and would love much more just to stay in one place for a long time. but these pit-stops make for more enjoyable commuting days all around. i certainly pat myself on the back those days that our travel day involves only two hours of commuting.

(below, sad inline-skates panda in warsaw)

the pace:
now friends, i need to talk about travel fatigue. because it’s a real thing. i’ve planned stretches of four night stays with blips of one night stays to have a chance to catch my breath, take some time to relax, and to not even look at a bus for a few days. some days i manage to pack in more than others. some days are awesome, and a couple are just sort of fails: sightseeing days that just didn’t go as planned.

at around the halfway point when we were taking long bus trips almost every day and spending a lot of one-nighters, i began to think sometimes i was letting myself down when i decided to have a night or a morning in instead of up with the dawn and out of the flat on the go. and then i realize that no sane person can go for twenty two days in a row of sightseeing and bus rides. no one. by taking a night in here and there, i can collect my thoughts and honestly, just rest my body.

have you ever experienced travel fatigue?

i admit that i can be a bit of a perfectionist when it comes to trips. purchasing advance tickets for an attraction, going to the museum on the cheap or free day, always striving to be better. because of this i can be really hard on myself when my day is less than i imagined it to be. it’s something i’m working on and i think i’m finally getting a grasp on that during this journey.

travel may be a whirlwind adventure, but it’s also life. as in, i am living these days. and they haven’t all been the action-packed days i dreamed about back in the czech republic, but they suit me. and i’m accepting that.

lastly, the country:
poland is amazing. it’s more than i expected it could be and i’m loving every day. the other day i forgot that i needed to eat lunch because i was so excited to start another (self)walking tour. yes, forgot to eat lunch. (WHO AM I?) we’ve now made it to the coast on the second part of our odyssey: one of the places i’ve been most looking forward to. upon arrival to the coast a couple days ago, the humid summery weather turned distinctly autumnal. that’s all fine and good, but i’ve got more beach to visit! this trip is so long the freakin’ seasons are changing.

off to enjoy the last couple days of poland. hope you are enjoying your last days of summer and doing all those summer things you wanted to do.