Dobrzyn, Day 3

March 10, 2023 • 12:00 pm

It’s cold and gray, and every morning there’s a light dusting of snow on the ground that melts away by late morning. The cherries haven’t yet begun producing leaves, so we’re still in winter stasis.

Here is the room where I’m staying, complete with a table and chairs created by the well known Polish artist Jerzy Kenar, who now lives in Chicago. Andrzej and Malgorzata met him in Sweden, where they both resided at the time, and he created this furniture for them featuring figures of musicians (click photos to enlarge them):

I’m surprised I haven’t heard of him; the Polish Wikipedia (translated by Google) says this of his works:

From 1995 at the Chicago airport and from 1998 at the Public Library. Harold Washington in Chicago houses his permanent exhibitions. In 2000, a sculpture in the Athenaeum, Park of the Museum of Architecture and Art. In 2007, a sculpture-fountain in Chicago’s “Renaissance” Park.

You can see his photo and more of his work here.

Below: a rare daytime moment when the site where Andrzej and Malgorzata produce their website Listy z Naszego Sadu  (Letters From Our Orchard), the precursor of which (a site called Racjionalista) explains why I first came here. They sit at the two facing computers nearly all day and evening save for meal breaks and occasional relaxation. The site began in 2013 when I happened to be in Dobrzyn.

Note Kulka between the computers. There is often a cat on one of the desks, sometimes lying on Malgorzata’s mouse arm and making it hard to work.

These implements were used for preparing second breakfast. I was unfamiliar with them. Do you know what they are? (The one on the left is from Sweden.)

And the lovely dowager Hili, usually friendly with Szaron but the nemesis of Kulka.

Two more of Her Highness:

The affectionate Szaron:

Readers want to see more pictures of Kulka, so here are some. Kulka at the food bowl:

Kulka waking up:

Kulka at rest:

Andrzej took this photo of me petting Kulka:

Hili’s eating on the windowsill but Kulka is nearby. Andrzej interposes himself between them to prevent a fight (they don’t physically battle but hiss at each other).

I walked to the river today though it was cold and muddy. Here’s the house from the end of one part of the orchard (there are trees on the other side of the house as well).

The mighty Vistula River, which flows from the mountains of southern Poland into the Baltic Sea to the north. It’s not really a river here, as it’s wider than it used to be since they built a dam in Włocławek,. It’s a river/reservoir.

And a panorama of the orchard. Click to enlarge.

14 thoughts on “Dobrzyn, Day 3

  1. from what I can see, that opposed-handle device is intriguing – fixed diameter, it seems. I guess a can fits in it and the lid is removed some how – a train of ball bearings seems apparent, but can’t solve this one.

    1. Bingo! And it does a great job, removing just the shell at the top and leaving the entire egg.

      The other device has a retractable needle. You put it on the fat end of the raw egg and push the button. It makes a tiny hole in it that prevents cracking when the eggs are immersed in cold water and then brought to a boil for three minutes.

  2. The carved table and chairs are simply incredible. The figures show so much emotion. What a treasure!

    I was thinking the round scissor device would be used for cutting sausage into pieces. it has scissor like handles and cutting spikes in the center.
    I can’t figure out the other one is.
    (I feel like one of those 20 year olds that can’t figure out how a rotary phone works.)

    I am so delighted to see these photos. What fun cats. Kulka and Hili really do look so similar.

    What a beautiful place to be. I’m just delighted to see parts of Poland. What a big and wonderful orchard. I can only imagine when it blooms how wonderful that is.

    Enjoy your time there, and thanks for the Kulka photos!

      1. And she’s not so “little” now, anymore!

        Wonderful pictures; very evocative. I too love those carved chairs. I hope PCC(E) will send us some pics of Jerzy Kenar’s work in Chicago , if he has the opportunity when he gets home.

  3. The two gadgets are ‘scissors’ for cutting the top off a soft-boiled egg, and the green one is a gadget for removing the entire shell from hard-boiled eggs.

  4. Very nice! Thanks for putting on your mudders today and taking the photos of the orchard, the panorama, and the river/resevoir shoreline. Also your hosts’ workspace and their website. This all helps me to visualize your vacation, the kitties’ environs and the daily photos in the Hili dialogues. Looks like a nice, peaceful and quiet neighborhood for reading, walking, and writing.

  5. Poor Kulka! Maybe Hili will eventually warm up to her.
    I must admit that there is something about Kulka that reads “juvenile delinquent” to me. She’s probably too playful for Hili.

  6. I just went to Andrzej and Malgorzata‘s web site. That is quite a complex site! Is the theme “rationality?” It a bit hard to tell. Although my paternal great grandparents are all from Poland, they spoke Yiddish. I, of course, speak neither Polish or Yiddish. Nonetheless, I will look through the site. Some of the articles are in English.

    Thank you for the photographs and commentary. What an adventure to be in Poland!

  7. Cool! Hobbit-esque furniture for eating like hobbits!

    And unless it’s contracted out, there must be at least shed somewhere with equipment for keeping the grounds around the trees mowed. Such things would be of interest, too.

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