in a pianist’s quarters

Mala signWhen I visit Warsaw last year I heard about the pre-war tenement quarter on the other side of river Wisła in Praga and I took the tram  … and walked and walked … asked and asked, but no luck. But I found a bridal dress market instead, the Różycki Bazar …. the black market trade once thrived under Nazi and communist governments, but nowadays the historic market (it began in 1901) is a ghostly image of its former self.

So when we met Meg and she started talking about that the quarters was used as film locations for Roman Polanski’s award-winning film “The Pianist” from 2002. It was a lot easier to find the locations for the quarter on Goggle, but Meg took Sue and me there so we didn’t have to walk around and look for the streets. There are tram stops in both ends: tram 26. It was a very hot morning, even if we gave ourselves an early start.

“The Pianist” is the true story of Wladyslaw Szpilman, at the time Poland’s most acclaimed pianist whose life is transformed during the Nazi occupation of Warsaw beginning in 1939. The film spans several years and maps his many personal trials in addition to providing the perspectives of his family, rebel factions, and sympathizers.

I haven’t seen the film yet.smashed

So we walked around and just looked at the two main streets; Mała and Konopacka, it looks like some houses (apartments) hasn’t been touch at all and some have been converted into modern living inside without any changes has been done to the houses outside, very cleverly done. But noticeable because of the new windows and balcony doors.pink bike

There is also many newly finished and ongoing development. Praga has many old buildings that are left to their own destiny … not only in the area we spent a couple of hours.  A true shame.   Today Praga are an up and coming, artistic, bohemian, etc – but still, there is a lot in decline.

It’s the oldest part of Warsaw and Mała means “Little”. konopacka

Sue and Meg talked to a lady that lived in one of the buildings that look like it hadn’t been touched, I don’t know even if they were talking the same language.  *smile

I met two street sweepers … the one with most chatterer wasn’t up for a photo, but he gave his partner away … even if he didn’t say no, he didn’t look too happy to getting his photo taken …. but I did it anyway.

 Personal I saw so much beauty in all the roughness … and decline.  beautiful roughness

It started to get really hot around 11.30 am already and we decided that we need somewhere with A/C, and Meg had was tide up for the afternoon, so we decided to take the tram to the Old Town (Stare Miasto) and change into bus 160 that took us back to the main bus station next to your hotel.

Back at the bus station we went for lunch at our favorite waterhole at the A/C chilled shopping mall … Sphinx. Great place, there is loads of places to eat at the mall … but we liked the menu and the service, plus there is a great view over the mall from the over-pass tables. tabbouleh

“In life, toughness and roughness go together.”
Auliq Ice

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37 thoughts on “in a pianist’s quarters

  1. In spite of the heat you managed to see quite a lot. You must watch The Pianist now. It is a very good movie though sometimes hard to watch.

    • Lulu, thanks … I watched “Schindler’s List” and that was so heavy, so it’s the reason why I haven’t watched “The Pianist”, but I’m going to watch when the rain and dark evenings are back.

  2. 🙂 Dear Wivi,
    you must see the film – it’s unbelievably good! I saw it on TV ages ago and couldn’t take my eyes off the screen. Very touching by all means.
    Thanks for taking us to Warsaw (haven’t been there (yet), maybe some day) and for sharing all the images of your holiday.
    Many hugs and have a wonderful evening xo 🙂

    • Thank you so much, for your lovely comment. I have been on my way to see so many times … but it’s a very tough subject for me to watch. It makes me sick to the heart and soul. But this autumn will I watch it. Maybe we should meet up in Warsaw … one day.
      Time for bed soon .. will take your hugs with me under the duvet. I wish you a peaceful night.

      • 🙂 I know, this movie is really touching and makes you sick and some point, too. You have to be in the mood for it.
        Thank you, my dear – I will hit the sack soon too.
        Sweet dreams xo 🙂

  3. This music is wonderful. I felt like I was in a movie walking through the village with this music playing. Such a beautiful feeling, Viveka. Thank you!

    • Thanks a million, Loisa … Chopin’s Nocturne In E Minor, Op. 72, No. 1 1 – was used in the movie … and on the soundtrack. Yes, truly beautiful. The soundtrack I have and the music is breathtaking beautiful .. 97% is of course Chopin.

  4. Vivi, you would fall about laughing if you could see us now! Mick is limping around with what could be gout, and I’m sniffling over a slow laptop. If I don’t laugh I might cry 🙂 🙂
    What a very interesting post. I haven’t seen The Pianist either, but always meant to. I love the wedding-y stalls! Fantastic 🙂 And the bike at the new window. I need to go and see what Sue has made of all this too. Sometime this year! 🙂

  5. Pingback: Beauty in Decay: Windows of Praga | WordsVisual

    • Thank you so much, I like that shot too …. I thought the same thing when I saw a sign for Praga for the first time. A sign for Praga at a tram station?????!!! There must be some connection.

  6. Visiting via Sue’s blog post to see what you make of the area. Love your eye for details and I agree with your thoughts about decay, sometimes it can be a bit too much and border on depressive. As for the Pianist, it is a hard film to watch, I saw it on a plane, not the best place to become so emotional.
    Jude xx

    • Hey there, Jude .. thanks for the visit and the lovely comment. In agree 100% with you – to work with decay I have to be in the right mood. To Warsaw can have the same effect because of all sad tragic history. Have to take it in small portions and I don’t mind because that means I can go back for another portion. Thank you for yours word about my eye for details. I don’t really want to take shots of full buildings. A building is a building. I know I have to be in the mood for the film, but I will watch it. Vivi

  7. Reblogged this on 12monthsinwarsaw and commented:
    Only Viveka at myguiltypleasures would combine a bridal market and dilapidation in the same post. This is the last of her Warsaw I’ll be reblogging. I’ve throughly enjoyed seeing my city through her eyes.

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