So I'll share it in pieces.
I spent Friday afternoon through Saturday in Chicago visiting with family. It was a sweet time to see them this spring, as we don't make it up to Chicago nearly as often as I wish we did. My mom, Auntie Donna, and I left for an 8 1/2 hour flight from Chicago to Frankfurt, Germany, had a few hour layover, and then a 1 1/2 hour flight from Frankfurt to Krakow, Poland. With the time change, we lost an entire night of sleep but spent our Sunday evening with family.
My aunt has spent the past 2+ years researching our family ancestry, during which she met my 3rd cousin, Maria. Maria has been a huge asset as she has had the means to find records we never would have been able to find living in the United States. We spent a lot of our trip with Maria, her parents Joseph and Isabella, and some of her older siblings. It was very sweet to meet our Polish family.
Monday, we went sight seeing around Old Town Krakow. My momma is a traveling pro and booked our hotel as close to the square as possible, and it was less than a 5 minute walk to the market, Cloth Hall, and St. Mary's Basilica. My cousin, Maria, joined us and translated ((seeing as our Polish vocabulary consists of: tak (yes), nie (no), dupa (ass), Dzien dobry (good day), and paczki (a cream filled donut that I could eat all day, every day)...)).
Aside from the regular sight seeing of St. Mary's Basilica, we also climbed in Eros' head and I took pictures next to knights in shining armor while holding a sword.
We also went up to Wawel Castle, which was right down the street from our hotel. The only part of the castle we saw that day was the Catholic Church, but we climbed to the top of the clock tower to get a view of the city and see the ancient bell.
After getting stuck in a hail storm, running for cover into the closest restaurant and eating a traditional Polish lunch of pierogies and kielbasa, my momma, aunt, and I went back to the Old Town square and Easter market to do a little shopping. We found some Polish pottery, pysanky Easter eggs ((they are wooden eggs with detailed and intricate designs painted on them)), and got a chimney cake rolled in cinnamon to share. The perfect snack for our cold walk back to the hotel.
I'm pretty much in love with Old Town Krakow. I could go to that market and spend hours there. Heck, we did!
I promise to share more this week, but not a daily play-by-play. Monday was just such a lovely, relaxed day of enjoying Krakow that it was one of my favorite days we had! If only every Monday was like this, Mondays wouldn't have the bad reputation that they get.