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Wednesday, 4 October 2017

Autumn in Krakow - Pro's and con's

Dearest pumpkins,

You know how much I love Poland and how deeply I feel for Krakow. The last summer days are gone and the autumn equinox passed, so I thought I might share with you my Pro's and Con's why you should spend Autumn in Krakow - but also in Poland in general. To be quite frank, Autumn is my favourite season - also due to the fact that I was born this very month, in October, but I will try my best not to be prejudiced by that ;) so... let's see the Pro's first:
1. The Sublime Autumn Weather - Astonomically Autumn beings with the Autumn equinox on the 21st of September and it lasts until the 22nd of December.  The temperature range is between 5 and 15 degrees Celsius.  Moderate temperature that slowly decreases daily and makes you layer up like an onion. The Con when it comes to the weather is the high level of precipitation - but more of that on the Con's.
2. The local markets bursting with colours and smells - the fresh veggies and fruits tempt you in every fresh market. My favourite one is the one on Stary Kleparz (Old Kleparz), just a few minutes away from Galeria Krakowska / Plac Jan Matejko. The month of September-October is perfect for going there and buying stuff for winter. There are local farmers bringing "the good stuff" and I highly recommend the mushrooms. They come in all shapes and sizes.
3. The 7XGospel Festival - the 12th one this year (2017) - focuses on Polish American African Gospel music, religious performances, workshops and all in both languages Polish-English. It takes place between the 12 and the 22nd of October. Feel free to register and join In! It's open to people of all ages and backgrounds, as long as you have an open mind and heart in understanding people and the world. Highly recommended for people who search for higher meaning in life.
4. November 1st - We don't have Halloween but we do have All Saints Day! Throughout the day people go to the cemetery to their beloved ones that passed away and pay their respects by bringing flowers and big candles that can burn throughout several dozen of hours. By the time night falls, throughout Poland, throughout Krakow, you will see cemeteries filled with people, filled with light, sometimes as if it was day outside - so bright it can get!
5. The number of tourists seems to drop, you don't get as much crowded streets and there is more room to breathe - the most popular time to visit Krakow is probably summertime and wintertime (for the Christmas Markets - in abundance throughout the city). I am totally fine with that, as it leaves me with clearer streets and much more space to breathe in my beloved Krakow. No more hustle 
The Con's:
The 2010 flood ìs one of the biggest ones recorded
1. High Level of Precipitation - it is well known by the locals but also by the foreigners that have lived in Krakow for a longer period than one year, that during the month of September there will always be transit issues near the Vistula River.  There are many rivers that join too the Vistula and when it rains heavily and sustained for weeks on end, the level raises so much that people no longer can use the bike paths. It's a constant every year!
2. The smog / The fog / The pollution - once golden Autumn starts fading away and November rains and cold starts settling in, people start their heating systems and... In the process, some use very un-eco friendly products, resulting in air pollution. The fog sometimes is so heavy you can cut it with a knife, you can't see at arms length before you. The smog... well... everyone gets infuriated because there is always on red on the typical applications that show you the quality of the air. Snow and wind does help clear the air up... but it's a constant nightmare to go out - people with masks everywhere! 

Yours very much truly,
The Twisted Red Ladybug That Loves Autumn In Krakow