Waltz No. 3 in A Minor, Op. 34, No. 2 – Frédéric Chopin
Since we arrived in Krakow at the end of October, I still could not put a point to the many feelings that this new moving unleashed.
Krakow is a beautiful city, served by an excellent public transport network that connects the whole city and even the suburbs. Krakow is also a difficult city for those who, like me, do not speak Polish. For those immigrants like me who are almost always alone with young children. For people like me not used to working office hours. 9h in the same place, every day from Monday to Friday.
Each city becomes what everyone wants to make it, following the trajectory of our own experience, or the reason we had for choosing it. Krakow, for me, is my office where I arrive in the morning after 25 minutes by tram and 10 walking on a grey road, overlooking industries and shopping centers. Krakow is also my home, with its large windows and balcony overlooking the neighborhood and the curtains, light and white, which protect from view but filter the light. The pistachio green sofa and the bathroom without a window. Gea’s room with parquet and the orange carpet with white polka dots that followed us from Poitiers. And the cabinet with Italian bitters and intermittent lights from “worst bar in Caracas” that we like so much, the kitsch touch that I never forget to have in my flat.
Krakow is the impossibility of understanding what people tell me but also my lack of desire to understand a culture that I feel hostile. The difficulty of the first weeks in shopping, the cultural shock in the educational system completely different from the attention we were accustomed to in France and the currency, which for the first time in all the years of life abroad, is no longer the euro. It’s something that does not make you feel at home.
I know that I must give myself time and give the city time to unfold in the beauty that surely it has, in its historical richness, that the pungent cold of this period crystallizes and hibernates. I have to give myself time to adapt to a place where I would never have thought of living. I have to understand that the answer to the question does not always come, which often is not immediate and must be built. My being here must be built, it must be given a sense to this feeling out of place and I am sure that in this research I will discover other sounds, other alphabets through which perhaps it is possible to communicate. Because nothing is ever lost if curiosity resists. Also in freezing conditions. Maybe.