Despite difficult weather conditions during the last week, we arrived in Warsaw perfectly on time, at 12 o'clock on Monday, the 18th of June. Until now, we made breaks in bigger cities on our way mostly to
change the crew and make some necessary technical amendments to the raft, but stay in the capital of
Poland is something slightly different. First of all, some of the people involved in organisation of the project, come from Warsaw, so we had a great help from them on site and the project was promoted in the city even before we actually completed building of the raft! So as at schools in Kraków, the Baltica team held presentations at schools in Warsaw.
We anchored at resto-bar located in the exact city centre of Warsaw, at the river bank, neighbouring the Copernicus Science Centre, called 'Cud nad WisÅ‚Ä…' (what means Vistula's Miracle in Polish :)). The name
of the place perfectly corresponds with its atmosphere. Everyday thousands of people stroll around the Vistula boulevard in this place, and these thousands of people get to see our raft! We painted a banner
and hung it next to the raft, promoting our idea and giving the most basic information about the project. We planned to spend 3 days in Warsaw, 3 days full of attractions!
Remembering that our crew is an international team, we prepared some touristic attractions for them in between of 'project duties'. Writing 'duties' I basically mean taking care of the raft and promoting the project. On Tuesday evening we gave a presentation at 'Cud nad WisÅ‚Ä…' that was followed by a regular afterparty during which the crewmebers were being asked hundreds of questions about the project. Strangers would come to us to have a little chat about the raft and personally, I think that such a direct talk was the best way of promotion. The raft definitly attracts people! We even had some spontaneous lectures for kids from Warsaw schools, who went on a trip with their teachers and met us accidentally. We talked with the kids about taking the responsibility for what we do and where we live and about the art of seeing beauty and potential in what seems to be trash to other people.
It appears that a group of young people from Warsaw share our ideology. They live in a place called 'squat' – that means an abandoned building, often with unclear legal status, which place they 'bring back to life' on their own. When I first heared of squats, I associated them with dangerous communities of drug addicts and alcoholics. I couldn't have been more wrong!!! They are only normal people who just live a different lifestyle, but most importantly they lead serious social and ecological projects! The abandoned building where they live serves also as a 'common-room' for children in difficult family situations. They organise lessons of different kinds for the kids. Once a week they go dumpster-diving for food and they prepare an open-meal out of what they find, they reuse absolutely everything and give many objects a 'second life'! At least to me, meeting these people was a very inspiring lesson of life and I felt proud to talk to them about the Baltica project.
But still our main activity in the capital was promoting the project in various medias. Although it's the European Football Championship that currently makes people here most excited, lots of newspapers, radio stations and TV stations showed their interest in the Baltica project! We gave a lot of interviews and made many contacts that should be very useful in the future.
And now we resume the journey in the direction of the Baltic Sea.
Adventure, here we come! 🙂