Friday, February 09, 2007

Sledding in Bielsko

I think most people agree that sledding is a general good time. But when you add meters of snow, a chair lift, a mountain, and skiers and snowboarders on the same path you get "xtreme sledding." (Sorry, I know that 'x' was inappropriate, but it's so it's the style these days...)

Alex, our bud from CELTA, is living in Bielsko-Biala teaching at another IH. So he invited us to come to his town for the day to go "sledging." I thought he was chewing something as we spoke, but--no--people from the UK add a g. It works well enough. So we took the train down to B-B and had the most interesting sledding experience of our lives to date.

Alex and his roommate Jared took us to the outskirts of town to the beautiful mountains. B-B is in very South Poland, close to the Slovakian border, and is a mountainy resorty town. So we took the chair-lift up the mountain (it was huge!) and hiked around the top for quite a while looking for the ideal sled run. It really wouldn't have meant much for us to find the best sled run in the country b/c Bhadri had put his knee through his cheapo plastic Tesco sled as we were walking through town (he thought he could sled down the sidewalk), so his sled was outa commission. Alex and Jared had opted for more expensive sleds with brakes, but we soon found out that they were very poorly designed and wouldn't go. At all. So mine was the only sled that worked. And, boy, did it work! It flew down the mountain.

We all took turns using my sled and Bhadri's flat rubber "sled" he got at the bottom of the mountain for 10 zloty. The best part of this was that the sled run we found also doubled as a ski and snowboard run. Jared got hit twice by snowboarders, Alex got hit once by them...we were the lucky ones. So we dodged the skiers/snowboarders, and scooted down the mountain. Ah, and we saw two different skiers flying down the mountain with their dogs running behind them! It was great!

We stopped off at a mountain pub and had hot wine and beer before making the final run down the hill. We were soaked to the bone and my chin was apparently frost bitten to a mild degree (skin started flaking off the next day...what?!??). But how cool was it to sled down a whole mountain!


Facts about Eurobusiness that you might not've known before reading this blog:
1. It is Monopoly's long lost twin.
2. It is completely in Polish.
3. The currency used is dollars.

We learned these facts a last week, when our friends Piers and Emilia invited us over to their apt for a friendly game of Eurobusiness. It was a grueling 5 hour event, with lots of bargains, and hotels turned paperclips, and in the end...I won! I have never won Monopoly before (still haven't I guess technically).

In short, we learned a lot and fun was had.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Katowice's Snowy Days

Our blogs are like a bad cell phone connection, always delayed. It's now wet and sunny here in Katowice, but a week or two ago, life was much different.

Here are some photos from 'round town when the flakes were a fallin'...

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Howdy folks! Well, I am waiting for my class to start. I have about 20 minutes. Bhadri is behind me, poring over the resource shelf for practice tests for his kiddos. Punishment for being rude teenagers, probably. We make our students do tests when their annoying.

So, I don't have any picts at the mo. But I do have the gift of letter formation (aka words). A big thank you (!) to those who have left comments--you know who you are (and so does everyone else, I guess, too). We love them!

Here's a mission for all ye faithful blog nerdies: You leave these great comments, but individually. We'd like to see some dialogue between commenters (commentators?), a little discussion, ya know. It's your challenge, should you wish (eh hem, care) to fulfill it.

So we're in our last week of classes now before a 2 week Winter Break. Whew! We need it. In case you didn't know, teaching is hard. (That was for you, Mom and Sue.) But it sure is nice to get some actual vacation time (That one's for you, Seiko and Goodwill!). The plan is to go to Wroclaw for a few days next week. Wroclaw is a city a bit smaller than Krakow about 3 hours west of here. It's supposed to be gorgeous, with a huge main square and lots of great cafes and pubs to hang out in. We don't know where we're going to stay yet, but we'll figure that out this weekend. And afterwards, we'll be designing our wedding invites, getting them printed (hopefully!), and sending them out. So if we don't have your address, please-please-please email/comment it to us!!!

Other things: It's warm here. And sunny. It's the strangest thing. It snowed and snowed for about a week, then it thawed and it hasn't snowed again! It was sunny out and probably in the high 40s/50s today! Can you believe it?! Everyone keeps asking us if we're freezing, assuming Poland is cold, but we are toasty bugs. No worries there!

We miss you guys very much! And hope all is fantastic back home. We'll be thinking of you while we're lazily hanging out on the square in Wroclaw, sipping hot chocolate at a fancy pub and watching the people flurry by.

Recap: Inaugural comment challenge has started. We're having fun. Please send us your addresses. We are not cold.