Wednesday, 20 January 2016

The air you breath

Hi there,

Some time ago, watching TV I was informed about the air pollution in a city I currently live. I have started thinking about what it means and what consequences takes. Have you ever thought that the air you breath can make you die?

As you know, the air consists of oxygen, nitrogen, carbon dioxide and noble gas. However, in the air there are many compounds which cause the pollution and are harmful for our health.

What are the main sources of pollution? Undoubtly, too many cars without the emission control devices (called DIESEL) but also too many cars in general, which produces exhaust fumes. Therefore, we can say that we people cause a danger for us. How many of us heat houses using heating appiliances for solid and liquid fuels (wood and coal)? Many tenement-houses in big cities are heated this way. There are also some people who decide to heat their appartment using whatever they can like old clothes or rubbish. This irresponsible behaviour has an impact on the quality of the air. I am sure that you do not know that smoking is also one of the most important factors which causes pollution.

Have you ever heard about stations which measure the quality of the air? There are white machines, similar to big rectangular boxes, full of electronic systems inside, which use an aerial to measure. In Poland in nearly every middle or big city there is almost one. A station measures a level of compounds like ozone, atmospheric particulates (PM10 and PM2,5(, nitrogen dioxide, benzene and sulphur dioxide. Under these strange names there are hidden compounds harmful for our health. They penetrate deeply into the lungs, exacerbating the organ. These are important factors which provoke allergies, asthma, pulmonary, larynx and throat tumors.

How can we defend us from their impact? First of all, we should be aware of a real danger. If we ignore measurments, the pollution will increase continually. Secondly, we should consider that we are all the people who should care about the common ambient. Sometimes it is better to leave your car at the car park and choose the public transport. Couldn't be better to move out from an appartment you are not able to maintain than heating it using rubbish? We should be sensible for other people who live next to us!

How can we check the level of pollution in our cities?
Today the Internet is the best source of information. The Environmental Protection Inspectorates of every Voivodship public warnings about exceeded levels of harmful compounds. There are also a few smartphone applications which indicate the statistics.

Remeber that a hundred percent on the scale indicates the exceeded level of one factor. In the winter, many statistics are exceeded, especially when the winters are quite hot and it winds rarely.

It is you who should care about your own and your children's health!

Monday, 4 January 2016

A book I would like to read, part 1


at the beginning I would like to wish you Happy New Year :)

These days I have read many books. However, to tell you the truth, nearly all of these are strictly related to my faculty. Now, I want to tell a little about those I would like to read in 2016. There are many books I have just bought or received. I dream to read them. This series of posts would encounter me and you to start reading what you really want to, without any pression from any side so let's go.

The first book is about a Polish musician and personality, born in Warsaw Kazik Staszewski. The whole title of the book is 'Idę tam gdzie idę: Autobiografia- Kazik Staszewski'. As it is mentioned in the title, it is an autobiography. It was given to me for this Christmas present. Kazik Staszewski is one of my favourites Polish musicians. I really appreciate his songs and principaly texts. For me, he is an artist one could really love, another really hate. His songs are very characteristic, full of metaphors and hidden truths. You must really concentrate to take passion from this kind of music.

For the first sight, the book looks well in relation to its size. For a man in-his-fifties the amount of 432 pages is really on the place. The front cover presents a photo portrait of Kazik Staszewski with his today look. I really regret that the book is not in a hard cover, The publication has been edited by Kosmos Kosmos publishing house in 2015. The introdution says that the book tells the story and experience of a few generations which is very universal as Kazik's songs. The main quotation says in Polish: 'Zawsze sobie mówiłem, że pewne historie pozwolę opublikować dopiero po mojej śmierci, ale niekoniecznie muszę się tego trzymać'. It suggests that the book could present a really interesting memories.

For me, it is not a simple autobiography because it has been written in a form of an interview. The text is accompanied by black and white photos, There are many but they do not overbalance. The book is divided in twenty eight chapters but I think it is possible to read from one question to another without losing a main sense of the book.

Sunday, 20 December 2015

Smoked meat

Hi there,

Christmas is going and in my house the preparations are in progress :). I would like to tell you about home-made smoked meat. Where has this idea come from? As you know, today many meat and cold cuts producers economize on production costs. They often add to their products many preservatives, which could be harmful for our health. These are for example potassium sorbate or glutamade. In meat you can also find unneccessary liaisons like guar or xanthan gum. You could not be sure what is really in a piece of meat you eat, It is also said that in cold meat there is little real meat. I am sure you like sausages, who does not like them? However, have you ever read the list of ingredients on a packaging? Many people do it rarely or never. Somebody could say that there is no list on a packaging or there is too long queue behind them to ask a sales assistant. It is true that many people are angry when one asks for many 'unimportant' things, making them waiting so much time for their queue. My family has found a solution to all of these problems,

I live in a detached house in village so my father has decided to built a smokehouse. It is small but very useful and profitable. It has been made with bricks with a chimney as a part. My parent buy about thirty kilos of pork to smoke. They do it with bacon, loin and ham. The product are very delicious and a big advantage of this method is that meat can stay fresh for so much time. It is a possibility to froze it and it does not change its taste. Nonethless, it is important to remember that meat must be marinated for almost one day. All the smoking process can last from one to three days. It depends on th effect you would like to achieve. I am very happy with the opportunity of having a home-made smokehouse. I know what I eat. I can buy a certified and safe meat to prepare really delicious cold cuts. Somebody could say that the taste is not nice for them. In fact, cold meat bought in a shop has different taste than that home-made because of flavour enhancer.

Next week when I got home, I will upload photos of Christmas smoked meat :).

Sunday, 13 December 2015

Christmas time

There are fourteen days left to Christmas Eve so I would like to tell you about Polish Christmas traditions.

As in many countries, every year shop windows are decorated with chains, Christmas baubles and fairy lights. The shops present special Christmas collections, which encourage us to buy almost one piece of cloth or decoration. For me, in Poland Christmas decorations appear too early because it happens immediately after All Saints' Day. From that time, there are more than two months to the holidays.

Before December 24th, that is Christimas Eve, Polish families decorate the Christmas tree with colorful baubles, fairy lights and many more special elements. Some people decide also to ornament balconies, windows and gardens of their houses. During Christmas Eve in Polish Christians' houses is organised a special solemn supper. That time we meet members of our family to pray together and rejoice at Christ's birth. A very important tradition of that time is sharing a special wafer when exchanging Christmas greetings. There are several Christmas carol which can be sing during Christmas.

There is a tradition to prepare twelve dishes, which are presented on the table during Christmas Eve. The meals symbolize twelve apostles. There are many types of dishes we can make and the choice often depends on the region of Poland we derive from. The special ones are borscht with ravioli and mushroom soup. There are also dumplings filled with sauerkraut and mushrooms, a cabbage stew and of course fish like a carp and in my house a cod and a Greek-style fish. Some ladies also prepare a dish consisting of boiled grain. A compote made from dried fruits is also very popular. My mother does it every Christmas but I must say that in the past I did not to used to drink it. It has a really characteristic taste. My mother dries fruits on her own to make the taste and a flavour unique. We cannot omit to bake cakes but there are no manily related to the Christmas tradition.

I will promise you to add photos of my Christmas dishes :)

Sunday, 6 December 2015

A holiday trip to Swinoujscie

Hello everyone,

I would like to tell you about one special trip I took in 2014. It was a free sunny August day in which we decided to visit Swinoujscie. I think it is a special place because of its island location.

A few words about its history. Swinoujscie is quite a young town, which became its status in 1765. It is located in three islands called Kasibor, Wolin and Uznam. Swinoujscie is not only a port town but also a captivating health resort and a holiday centre. This medium town is one of the biggest in West Pomeranian Voivodeship. As I said, Swinoujscie is separated from the rest of Polish land because of its island location but there is not a problem to go from the mainland territory to the island. Wolin and Uznam have a constant ferry crossing, which is free of charge and comes very often. To tell you the truth, there are two ferries.

The name Swinoujscie has been created by a amalgamation of two words, Swina and ujscie. Swina is a local river and ujscie means a place in which the river comes to the Baltic. It is said that the name Swinoujscie was translated from German language.

Swinoujscie, as a health resort, was built in nineteenth century. One curiosity is that in the past the town had a constant overland connection to the rest of Poland. Unfortunately, in 1945 it was broken down by the natural disaster related to an ice floe of Swina River. From 2006 in Swinoujscie it has been construted a gas terminal, which is considered as a chance for Poland to independence in the area of energy.

Swinoujscie is also a charming town with a few interesting monuments to sightsee. One of them is undoubtly white characteristic lighthouse, built in 1857 as the biggest in the world in that time.

 I recommend you to see also the Church of Christ King, which an example of gothic architecture.

If you like seeing buildings from the distance, you can reach the top of a lookout tower, which in the past was a part of the old church.

It could be a sin not to walk over nearby the port. There it is a possibility to admire enormous proms and tourists ships, which impress nearly everyone.

I hope I have enocouraged you to visit a little bit unappreciated town called Swinoujscie. It could be a memorable trip for you also due to a ferry crossing. :)

Sunday, 29 November 2015


Hi there,

Today I would like to tell you about my district. I live in Koszalin, near the Baltic, in a district called Jamno- Labusz, which priviously was a single village.

The first historical reference about Jamno comes from 1278, when a church was built. In the past, from autumn to spring, Jamno was closed from another villages because of its location between the Baltic and a river. It was no route to wriggle out. The first of paved was built in 1899.

The name Jamno dervies from those related to animals. Its previous names were Jamene, Jamele, Jament and Jamen which are said to come from a foxhole (in Polish language).

The architecture of Jamno is concentrated round the main market with the church in center. From 1266 the village became a barrier for the city of Koszalin to have access to the lake and also to the Baltic.

Jamno was built as a municipal village. In Jamno the main representative of the city was a provost, who could administer punishment and gather taxes in. The fields became the property of the city of Koszalin while the farmers could be their lifetime cotters. The wealth of Jamno's inhabitants was showed by their very colorful and embellished cloths, which were put on till 1921.

Jamno created its own specific culture related to cloths, architecture, decorations and craftsmanship. It is treated as a exception in the Middle Pomerania. The main impact on the Jamno's culture was the city and Netherlands boomers, who got there in the seventeenth century. Those boomers tried to clean the lake and the local drains. These two villages Jamno and Labusz adapted the foreign customs to their owns, creating a totally new and special culture.

In which consists the speciality of Jamno's culture? Principally in polichromic furniture characteristic by their different shapes and colors. The Jamno's armchairs were very important in weeding celebrations. In the nineteenth century artisans from Jamno started to manufacture furniture on order.
The inhabitants were also great weavers.

 However, the main characteristic point of Jamno's culture is still engraving and openwork ornaments.

From 2010 Jamno has been a district of Koszalin but still there are people who celebrate the local culture and traditions. In one of Koszalin's museums it is organised a constant exhibition related to Jamno's culture.

Sunday, 22 November 2015

A beer fair

Hi there,

how was your weekend? Yesterday I visited a beer fair. The event was organised in the third pavillion of The Poznan International Fair. There were about forty expositors participated in. Every of them constructed their stall, which offered many attractions. It was a possibility to try nearly one hundred and seventy beers from small and local breweries. Some of them had their premiere during the fair.

The idea of beer fair was not only to sell as many bottles as possible but also to let a visitor try some amount of a beer. The organisers proposed to use a special glasses as to make better visitors' taste experiences. Drinking from the glass is supposed to be better than from a plastic. Every visitor could borrow one paying a security deposit. There were also avaliable a few taps which let the people wash their glasses. It was important not to mix two different beers in one glass.

The beer stalls offered a small amount of beer to try. However, to tell you the truth, the price was not adequate to the full size bottle of one beer so it was better to buy a half litre of a drink.

I am visualizer as every woman so I was fully focused on colorful beer stickers. It could sound strange if someone appreciates a beer judging by its sticker but for me many of them were very interesting.
I tried to drink one dark beer from a local Wschowa's brewery. For the first time I really liked one dark rather than a lager. For me that I tried was not similar to dark one, besides its color. Its taste was very sweet and it had a gentian in the same time. It was a really good choice. I have also bought four bottles from the same brewery as the dark one. I wanted to try some new which I had never tried before so I chose ginger, chocolate, mint and strawberry beers. There are not pasteurized so their expiration date is quite short.
I am really curious of the new tastes as I like trying new beers, especially those from local breweries.

I hope that next year I will also be able to partecipate in that interesting event.