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Which Way to Warsaw?

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Friday, February 19, 2021

This is a footbridge over a river between Poland and Slovakia. We took our grandchildren (and their parents) there in 2014 to connect with their roots and meet their cousins.

While we were able to WALK into Poland, the contract of our rental car did not allow us to DRIVE across the border. Good thing we didn’t take a chance. This was the Slovak side of the border. While I have no problem reading signs or with basic communication, there was nothing to indicate this parking was only for residents.
They accepted my apology in my fractured Slovak, but visiting Poland would have to wait.

Fortunately, I am able to visit Poland now virtually with some Spark buddies while planning for the future.

Our virtual journey started out in London
Our family trip started in London too.
Our grandchildren and their Dad recreated that Abbey Road album.

Our family flew to our next destination
My Spark buddies and I “walked” across the Channel to Amsterdam

Joe and I have visited Amsterdam many times
Among the serene streets and canals there are reminders of the Nazi occupation during WWII. These bronze plaques in the sidewalk are memorials to those residents deported to concentration camps

The house where Ann Frank and her family were hidden is also along a canal

The next milestone on our virtual walk was Brussels, Belgium
Except for many times through the airport for a connecting flight, we have never been there.
From the photos and information on our virtual trek, this city will be added to our post Covid bucket list.

As we walked through Europe, there were continuous street views of the countryside and finally we crossed into Germany. Eventually our group reached Berlin

This is the famous Brandenburg Gate

We have visited Berlin several times, once even by bicycle. On one trip we took another set of grandkids (and their parents) to connect with history that was only known to them in textbooks and film. This section of the Berlin Wall is now maintained behind a barrier to prevent people from chipping off “souvenirs”

The most poignant memorials in the city include bronze plaques in front of the homes of those who were sent to their deaths and this little known set of sculptures near a railway deportation station. It includes a disinterested figure sitting on a bench some distance away representing the general apathy of people to what was going on around them.

It is 355 miles from Berlin to Warsaw.
It would take me 4 months to walk that far on my own.

We are almost there.
This is the view on the outskirts of Warsaw as far as my weekly steps got me.

BUT thanks to the steps of a spark buddy, we have reached Warsaw!
Definitely on my post Covid bucket list

That’s exactly how Spark friends help us to reach all of our goals

Next we explore the countryside of Poland on our way north.
If anyone wants to see where all your steps would take you, come join us.

The website is www.worldwalking.org (it is free)
Once you register, search groups for Sparkpeople (there are several)
Ours was formed in 2020 and has a large bird in flight as its logo
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