Thursday, May 16, 2013

Bydgoszcz Specialized Training...and then a special treat!

This morning we are in Bydgoszcz for Specialized Training.  President does his "Good, BETTER, BEST" training every once in awhile and wanted one last time to make sure all his missionaries knew what the difference was...
Arriving early to open the Chapel so President could set up all that was needed were Elders White (on exchange from Gdansk) and Wilson (Zone Leader in Bydgoszcz).
Because President uses a power point presentation, the room needs to be darker.  To help block out the windows and set everything up, we rely on our great Elders.  President brings his own large trash bags and duct tape.  His motto can use duct tape for anything. During our stay in Poland, he has found many uses for "bailing wire and duct tape".
Elders Harris (District Leader) and Allen show up early to stamp their pass along cards with their address and phone numbers on the back.  This way people will know who to call and where to go.
 Soon the Gdansk missionaries arrived.  Elders Skolmoski (District Leader in Gdansk) and Vernon (Zone Leader who was on exchange in Gdansk), and the Sisters...
 Sisters Young (just transferred to Gdansk) and Swenson.
The great missionaries in the Bydgoszcz and Gdansk Districts.  Sisters Swenson and Young with Elders Allen and Harris.  Elders Vernon, Skolmoski, White and Wilson.
After the training meeting everyone enjoyed famous 'Marcin mini pizzas', picked up mail and supplies and were ready to go out and contact.  Elders Skolmoski, White, Wilson, Vernon, Allen and Harris with Sisters Young and Swenson.  We had a great time and visit with our missionaries.  President also interviewed each one as he always does.
When we travel around the country, it's important to keep our eyes open. There is something interesting around every curve in the road!  Like the one old WWII motorcycle and sidecar.
Now we are heading to Szczecin. But first a quick stop to say 'hello' to some dear friends in Torun...
The long bridge crossing the Wisla River. It is not tall but  r e a l l y  long.
Entering into the historic and beautiful city of Torun...known as the 'city that time forgot' because of its lack of excessive commercial signs and tourist paraphernalia.  We have not been here in over two years, and it was fun to see everything and realize how much history is here and how much we forgot since our last visit.
Torun's most famous citizen...Nicolaus Copernicus was born here and did most of his research and findings in Torun.
This beautiful medieval city was not damaged in WWII and is full of Gothic architecture and great red-brick churches and buildings like....
...the house of Copernicus. Here we are with Kornilia and Artur....excellent guides of a very beautiful city.
We headed to the Old Town Square and found one of the most popular landmarks there.
Yes, this is how it usually looks....covered with children. What is it, you ask?
A bronze donkey! Depicting a medieval practice of bringing a thief to the main square and making him ride around the marketplace.  They had put a sharp metal rail (about 3" high) down the length of the donkey which was unbearable to sit on.  The whole town then knew what he had done. (This quiet moment for the donkey lasted about 15 seconds and another set of tourists/children gathered around him.)
Like this group! The Town Hall behind us is a huge, stunning brick building that is built on the numbers found in a year. See if you can follow this:  One large tower = one year. Four spires on the corners = 4 seasons. Inside the building are 12 halls = 12 months. Outside the building are 365 windows = 365 days in a year.
On the backside of the building, do you notice something interesting? Look closely. One of the windows has been bricked up. Every 4 years on leap year, they remove the bricks and add this window for February 29th! The next time a window will appear will be 2016.
The Leaning Tower...part of the old city wall. Legend: if you can stand with your whole body against the tower, you tell the truth. looks like President Nielson passed the test!
Torun was a merchant city. Why? Because part of the city is borders the Wisla river. Today it was exceptionally beautiful, blue and wide.
These young men were passing out some fliers for the Monte Cassino.  At first we thought they were Polish Scouts.  Then we realized they were young men announcing the exhibition of the Monte Cassino  (not like the casinos we have in Las Vegas... but the battle).   The uniforms they had on were British Army uniforms because when the Polish Army came in to support and save the British Armies, New Zealanders, South African and French troops, they had no uniforms.  They took British uniforms and put their Polish patches and insignias on them.  Something we learned from our excellent, local and friendly tour guide-  Artur. 
It was truly a great few hours with some great friends. A nice reprieve from meetings and interviews. Thank you Artur and Kornilia for taking the time to show us your beautiful Torun!

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for your posts, Sister Nielson! --
    Sister Allen


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