Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Poland seminar exercises, diary and update!

Blog Update
Poland / Ireland October 2012
I am writing this update whilst on flight FR8012 from Warsaw Modlin to Dublin. I have been in Poland since last Thursday when I flew with a friend of mine out of Manchester. Pat, who is one of my long term friends has always wanted to see exactly what it is I do each weekend when I go away. I have told him many times that although flying and airports sound glamorous, it isn’t always as glamorous as indeed it sounds!
I was due to conduct a two day training seminar at Fort Dog club (one of my regular clubs I visit in Poland) on Saturday and Sunday.
Thursday night Pat, Aleksandra and I all went out into Warsaw town and to some of the nightclubs. The taxi that picked us up was quite unique. None of the instruments worked on the dash board, no speedo or fuel gauge, however we did have a web-based internet entertainment system that meant we could watch music videos whilst weaving in and out of lanes!
We also discovered that what is considered a vodka shot in Poland, is vastly bigger in size to that of UK, and considerably cheaper too. However the end result is fairly similar!
On Friday we went shopping to the local IKEA of all places, and one of the big shopping centres, and took dinner in the Hard Rock Café Warsaw. A quite relaxed day mostly recovering from the previous night!
The training was scheduled outside at the normal club venue on Saturday, and this being Poland it was cold. I was scheduled to have two groups of 4 who rotated through the day.
We woke up Saturday morning to snow falling from the sky. We proceeded to the venue in almost blizzard like conditions. The venue was grass and I was happy to start training, but didn’t use any contact equipment.
I had to modify my plans considerably as the morning went on. The snow became heavier and heavier and the exercises focused on rear crosses and weave entries out of tunnels, rather than anything with sharp turns or front crosses for example.
We did all manage to build a big snowman at lunch time, such was the amount of snow falling. I was so pleased to get inside. We took lunch at a polish restaurant serving dumplings and a nice warming soup. This was much needed!
By the end of the first day, conditions had become too bad, and I decided that the second day was unlikely to be practical. Lucky for everyone, the club hopefully has an indoor venue soon and I will return in December during the week to do the second days training and complete the course!
All of us were happy to get back home and get in the sauna that evening. I was so cold by the end of the day, and despite having decent clothes, my gloves leaked and shoes were wet.
Sunday became a free day. I had in fact stopped snowing, but there was a considerable amount on the ground, so training would still have been unable to take place.
On Monday, Patrick and myself did our bit for society and culture, as well as bring Poland and UK closer together. We visited a secondary school in the centre of Warsaw, where we were guest speakers to a class of 30 kids, who were interested in doing a foreign exchange with a school in Telford, Shropshire. At the school we first went to see the head mistress and other official people, before going into class! On the way I couldn’t help but tell off two students who were kissing in the corridor (I just remembered what rules we had when I was at school!)
We were asked many questions by the students, from information about the school, cultural differences, “what do we eat for Christmas dinner?” to “what is the weather like?” and “were we influenced by the queen?” so quite a variety!
In the evening we went to a Chinese restaurant. We ordered so many dishes but it was good food. We went home to pack and get ready for flying today.
Which is where we are now, flying from Warsaw in Poland, to Dublin. Having almost missed the flight and having to be called to the gate (that’s never happened to me before… well saying that, they probably called me in Johannesburg when I wasn’t even at the airport on the right day, but we don’t need to go there again!)
I will teach in Ireland Wednesday and Thursday. I am visiting the same group I went to earlier this year, where I had a very good time.
Time to swap the Polish Vodka for Irish Guinness!
Enjoy the pictures and exercise plans.
Pictures - Pat JW Buckingham


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