Today we took a risk to take a day trip to Gorlitz, Germany, via train. We had never been to Gorlitz before, and it was a very cold day in the freezing range. As we walked into the city it was sleepy and seemed not so great. I was wondering if the day trip was worth it. However, as the day progressed, it got better and better.
We walked a circular trip that took us into Poland, Gorlitz being on the border. We enjoyed the journey discovering many wonderful and beautiful buildings. We walked near a city park and saw a new synagogue being built. The Jewish population was decimated during the World War II holocaust. Many survivor families have returned and are building a very large synagogue near the beautiful park.
As we walked over the border, there were buildings painted in a Polish style, pastels with white trim. Much refurbishment and revitalization is being done in Zgorzelec, Poland. It was past noon and we thought what better use of our time than to have lunch in Poland. What an adventure that turned out to be! One restaurant after another was closed until later in the day. Then presto, an open restaurant on the river! I am positive it would be hard to find a finer restaurant anywhere! Housed in a historic building and refurbished in high style, the linen tablecloths and napkins at Miodmaliny said, “Right place.” Polish stencil work on the walls and red velvet couches and silver velvet chairs made for comfortable seating. The chef was so gracious to explain wine, beer, cordials, appetizers, main courses, desserts. We tried it all! Thin pancakes with Polish curd and fruit and mushroom and sour cabbage perogies in herbed cream sauce were our shared appetizers. Cabbage rolls with veal in a rich tomato gratin; golden duck with whole cranberry sauce and baked apple with Swabish (a state in the old German Empire that was given to Poland after World War II) potato dumplings were our main dishes. The duck was by far the best I have ever eaten–crispy exterior and tender interior. The wines and beers were very good and the fruit cordial tasty. We all oohed and aahed the rest of the day.
We returned to Germany via a pedestrian bridge in a scenic part of the river. Directly in front of us was a majestic Lutheran Church, closed for some repair and rehearsal prior to a weekend concert. We heard a pipe organ playing through the massive walls. We were in the Altstadt (historic section) of Gorlitz. It was beautiful, and workers were everywhere preparing for the Christmas Markets that are to open this weekend. An ice skating rink was already open in a city square and filled with laughing children. We entered another large Lutheran Church from the 1200s. Painted ceilings and walls highlighted the long nave with a beautiful carved altar drawing attention. Fascinating.
As our long day was drawing to a close, we headed back to the train station for an hour journey back to Dresden. What started out as a day unclear as to what would be seen or if any experience could be had turned out to be a very rewarding day. We were reminded that sometimes one can take an adventure when not sure of the outcome. Some people are afraid to take that risk–we were glad we did. WEG