Friday, 6 January 2012

Second destination : Poznan

I had my CS host's phone number and so I text'd her that I've boarded the train and will be in Poznan at around 11.30 hours.  During the journey I really enjoyed the beautiful views of the huge farms and small villages.  Everything around me was new.  The type of train, very few people in the compartment, one girl next to me was traveling with her dog.  Traveling in a train with your pet like a dog or a cat is pretty much common I guess in Europe.  One more annoying thing, you can buy a train ticket in the train itself from the conductor.  Never you can do that in India.  You can get an upgrade if there is vacancy, but never can buy a ticket in the train.

Finally I arrived in Poznan.  Weronika told me she will come at the station to pick me up.  That was really very very nice of her.  I was waiting for her outside the station and in few minutes she arrived and it was pretty obvious for her to recognize me.  We exchanged the initial greetings and off we went for breakfast.  She took me to a nice restaurant in the main city center, where there was a crowd of tourists gathered clicking at some building.  Weronika explained to me that its the tower with 2 goats who shall fight at 12.00 hours and its one of the main attraction of the city.  I was lucky to get the glimpse of this unique goat tower.  We had a very nice breakfast and some really good conversation on couch surfing and life in general.
At the Poznan CS meet with my host - Weronika
Then she took me around the city while we had some nice talk about her thesis on CS and what her future plans are.  I told her about some of my beautiful CS experiences and how India is and also since she was a big fan of Indian food, we discussed what shall I be cooking for her.  This I had proposed to her in my CS request to her.  So than it was time to do some shopping for ingredients for the Indian dishes.  We went to a big mall and in it to a super market which had one whole section filled with Indian spices, ready to cook food packs and few other things.  We had decided to cook some Pakoras and Rice and Dal.  Surprisingly we found a pack of cooked Dal.  So off we went to her house.  It was kind of on the outskirts of Poznan, not very far as Poznan itself is not very big in area.  So here I am starting my first official surfing out of India.

Weronika lived with her mother who was at work when we reached her house.  It was a very very nice and cozy flat and she showed me the couch that I was suppose to surf.  While talking with her she told me about this Couch Surfing conference that was going to take place in Berlin the next weekend and I was thrilled to hear that.  We checked online and the invitations were still vacant.  She send me an invite on my e-mail and we were done.  So now it was time for some Indian cooking.

Firstly we decided lets cook some Pakoras with Indian tea.  She didn't have milk or tea leaves at home so we went to a nearby shop and got it.  We prepared some onion, potatoes and pepper pakoras and some Chai.  To be honest the chai wasn't upto the mark, as the tea leaves were mild in taste and also without ginger, the tea spice masala chai is incomplete.  But still it was nice and I enjoyed it with out nice talks.  First time in my life I had sparkling water at her place.  Now it was the time to cook Rice and Dal.  Instead of just plain rice I thought lets make a simple Pulao.  We didn't had green peas, but then there were potatoes and onions which were enough.  Finally our Pulao and Dal were ready.  We sat down to eat but I put forward one condition.  We shall eat Rice & Dal as they are eaten in India with hand and not any spoon or fork.  And Weronika readily agreed.  It was really fun.  The food was little bit spicy but she loved eating spicy food, so that was perfect for her.  

I was lucky that I was in Poznan on a Thursday as every Thursday there is a CS meet there and it would have been wonderful to attend one such meet up outside of India.  So after dinner Weronika and me took a tram and headed for the CS meet.  Initially we went to the wrong place but Weronika easily founded the right one.  It was a nice cafe with dim yellow light and lots of young people talking and drinking.  I met there few nice people from Canada, America and also from Poznan.  We had some nice interesting talks and after few glasses of beer it was time to try something else.  There was this drink on the counter for 10 PLN.  It was called the Bolivian Kiss...Well don't remember much what exactly it was made from, but we had a shot of it and it was nice.  The cafe was getting little bit crowded, so few of us decided to check out some other places.  It was Thursday and felt like as if the weekend was already there.  We went to another bar and again had some drinks before finally hitting the Buddha Bar.  Loud music, lots of people and LCD's showing bollywood movie scene's.  I was like what ?  Bollywood movie scenes and trance music going on ?  But I enjoyed it along with very friendly people.  Surprisingly one local polish guy also offered me and my friends a free shot of Tequila.  Hmmm that was very generous.  

We finally decided to hit back for home and finally at around 04.00 hours we went to bed.  I slept late next day and woke up hungry.  My train back to Warsaw was in the afternoon.  So we decided to go to town, have some late breakfast and then Weronika offered me drop me back to the station.  While walking in the city I really felt very cold and thought my warm jacket from India won't help me survive in this freaking cold weather.  So got my souvenir from Poznan, a nice really warm jacket that would save me on my entire trip.  So finally a nice walk in a park and then some stuffing potato breakfast in a restaurant known for its potato dishes.  We reached the station and it was time to head back to Warsaw hoping to meet my super host Weronika again next weekend to go to Berlin for the CS conference.

I must say to meet such a passionate CS'er was indeed a pleasure.  Very smart, confident, brave and very independent.  I wish she gets to visit one of her dream destination India very soon.  I'm sure she'll have an awesome time traveling the length and breadth of India.  See you in India Weronika....


  1. Where in Poznan did you find a big mall and in it to a super market which had one whole section filled with Indian spices, ready to cook food packs and few other things???

  2. The name of the building is Stary Browar and there is a super market in the building where you get those ready to cook food packs.