Sorry for that. I’ve been busy and in Poland. In any event, I’m on the plane from Atlanta to Sacramento — this is the final leg of my journey.
So about Poland. I really liked Warsaw. It is very cold in November which means that there aren’t many tourists. I think the only “tourists” that I encountered were the people from the COP (the conference I attended). I think without tourists I had a much better opportunity to see the real Warsaw and I liked it. Warsaw is an atypical European city because it’s basically brand new (or at least 60 years old). World War II left the city for the most part in ruins so most of the buildings were built in the late 1940s/early 1950s. Some of the city was built to look exactly like it did before. I explored Old Town Warsaw a bit and it is the most touristy place in Warsaw — in fact, it is the only place where I saw souvenir shops and heard a lot of English and not so much Polish. I stayed in the city center of Warsaw which was amazing! I was super close to a ton of tram/bus/metro lines as well as a huge shopping center, green space, and the university area.
While I was in Warsaw I did two walking tours: a Jewish history and a communist tour. I liked the communist one better, even though I felt like I saw and learned more on the Jewish tour — the Jewish tour was REALLY depressing and I don’t like how the tour guide kind of rushed everything. It happens.
In any event, my return to Davis has left me a little blue. I really like Europe, I enjoyed my day in Atlanta and I feel like returning to Davis means that I’m going to have to worry about all the homework and research that didn’t get done in Poland. I left Davis having completed all my assignments but having missed a week of stuff, I know that I already have a homework assignment due on Monday and an exam to start studying for on Tuesday. Life is great as a student.
Also, I’ve really begun to like Atlanta. I don’t think I could ever live there but the vibrant Midtown and Downtown areas sort of remind me of Austin’s but better. I feel that the amount of traffic in Atlanta is perfectly reasonable (my biggest complaint about Austin) and it’s actually a city. It’s got a good public transit system and things to see. It also doesn’t hurt that I have a good friend there, which obviously makes it a better place now than it was before :).
PS. I don’t fly for another week. Life is good.