Prof. Graham Wood (of the Windjammers Ensemble) on his way to Oxford visited Krakow and the Kosciuszko Mound. As we have received a great photo only yesterday, we are republishing this little report (previously printed on July 15th).
THE MOUND BY STANISLAW WYSPIANSKI
Well, what a day I had yesterday! I must say I love the relaxed and friendly atmosphere here in Krakow after the hectic-ness of Prague.
Mid-afternoon yesterday I set off to walk to the Mound. I figured that if I could climb Mt Kosciuszko I could walk the 4k west to the mound. It was a beautiful walk, up through the maples and chestnuts to the walls surrounding the mound. The mound does not appear on this route until you climb the steps almost at the end (I guess you know this anyway, but for me it was an adventure).
So I paid my 6 zls (about $3) at the entrance gate and wound my way up the cobbled path through the lush green grass growing on the mound (they've had some heavy rain here). The slope is 45 degrees, so you don't want to fall off.
Evidently it was nearly washed away in heavy rains in recent years, so a lot of work has been done to restore the mound since 2000 or so. The view from the top of the city and surrounds was superb - and there is perfect space there for a group of musicians to play!
A path around a large stone with the name Kosciuszko engraved on it - diameter of 4m or so. I chatted to a family (she was from the US, he from Krakow and their daughter) about what we'd done in Australia (PP: Kosciuszko music on Mt Kosciuszko) - I had to tell somebody! They appreciated the story.
There's a shop and museum and waxworks, and I talked to the guy looking after them. He then called in Leszek Cierpiatowski, from the Mound Committee, and we had a great talk about the Australian event though I wished I knew more Polish than "chodź, chodź". Leszek knew all about our February 17/18 event and called in Michael, the guy on the front desk, whose English was impeccable. So eventually we all had a lot of laughs and I felt very glad I'd made the contact.
Leszek would like a copy of the original keyboard score for the museum so I said I'd ask you and we'd send it. The museum there is fascinating and I took lots of photos. They do have a simple (one part) score of the two polonaises on display on a stand, but not the waltz. I also mentioned that you would be visiting next year.
Am off to explore more of Krakow now...very best wishes,
Prof. G.Wood on the Kosciuszko Mound
The old way to the Mound
Aerial view on the Mound. Photo Radio RMF FM