This is the first question we hear in new places, meeting new people. “Where? Poland?”.

There are many reactions to that. Mostly positive. Sometimes funny… “Yes, yes I know! Holland”🤣. Sometimes some shitty stereotypes, especially from Europeans, as they at least heard about that country. Historically speaking, Poland, hasn’t done much bad worldwide to anyone. Except it’s own citizens and maybe few neighbors. No colonization, no slave trading, only one pope. 🙃 Ok, Pope had a pretty massive impact, especially here in South America. For some reason, people still tend to think positively about him.🤔


At some point of our round the world journey, we decided that name Amazon should no longer represent online shopping. It should earn a place in our travel stories, as Queen of all Rivers, instead. We met her in Leticia, Colombia. We went also up the river to Puerto Narino and further in the jungle, to the lake Terapoto in Tikuna territory. There, little boy asked us the same question. Guess what he said to Poland? (at this point I truly hoped that he didn’t know JPII, because anyone knows that nothing good ever happened to any indigenous tribes from the church representatives). But the boy made my day saying with big smile “Polonia, Robert Lewandowski”.

Thank you Robert Lewandowski that you exist! We often say “Robert Lewandowski king of Poland” (it rhymes in polish), because he opens the doors and hearts for us. I don’t know how it works, but being Polish, and under obvious protection of HM Robert, we stop being gringos. He makes it easy for us in offices, taxis, shady places or situations.

Anyway… back in Leticia, we had a dancing breakfast (I wouldn’t believe that you could dance salsa, on the street, at 8am, to the porridge, but it happened to me, so yeah…) and at some point some guy approached our table. He looked like a shaman. At least like my idea of a shaman. Elderly man, Tikuna, rather small, dressed in some wild cat’s skin, one crazy eye, brown teeth. Man, he looked surreal, but we were in Amazonia, so he was yet another guy on the street…

Polacos? Catolicos! – he didn’t ask, he assumed – me too, me too… – he made a sign of the cross, kissed his hand and looked piously to the skies as if he was praying. All very serious. And then, he looked at me with the crazy eye, and blinked. I am not sure if my jaw was back in place, but I definitely saw that blink. – but my soul is in jaguar! – he laughed, grabbing the jaguar’s fang hanging on his neck. He left us speechless, laughing frantically and dancing down the street. – mi alma es en jaguar!

Treasure from Mayreau

Once upon a time… well, ok – not that long time ago, but surely before covid, on the tiny Caribbean island called Mayreau, we were lucky to meet the most extraordinary person. In the tiny grocery store up the hill. His reaction to Poland turned to hours of conversation. The knowledge of Polish history and political situation would surprise most of Poles, even those who hold a degree. He was some kind of private commentator to Queen Elisabeth, reporting directly to her about the situation in Grenadines. He even showed me letters from her. We were absolutely delighted to talk to him. We touched some difficult topics like why Bequia is still hunting whales or why do they let Japanese empty their coastal waters from the fish for some lousy investments on the island. That is btw something for another story. He let me leave under the promise that, I would empty every sailor’s bar or laundry places in the Caribbean and bring him as many English book as I can carry. So I did! If you ever end up in Mayreau, in the Salinas Bay, bring some books to the tiny grocery store way up the hill, you might also get delighted!

In the mountains

But the one of the funniest “where-are-you-froms” happened to us during our Colombian tour. Somewhere in the mountains. In the place, from where you can only return, literally end of the world. The place where the bus comes only once or twice a day. So here we are, walking the streets of the pueblo. The altitude was already significant, so we were breathing heavy like we were at least 30 years older. The bus was already at the stop, so we ran as fast we could. As you can imagine – it was not really impressive or graceful run, but we made it. I thought I would spit my lungs out! Anyway… first question inside the bus was not where you go, but where you from, amigos? His answer was even more unexpected than his question. “Welcome to my bus, how nice to see you, I hope you like it here” but it was in perfect Polish!!! It was so nicely said, with good accent, full sentences – definitely not like an average Pole we meet. His Polish ended there, but then he stepped outside the bus and reached to the only sticker that was on the bus station, touched it with some tenderness, and said – “but Ruch Chorzów is the best football team in the world”. I am not big on soccer. I’ve heard about that team, but hearing it in the middle of nowhere was quite surreal, and I took a photo of him – in our memories forever.

All the best from San Andres, which is small island in the Caribbean Sea, I bet most of you haven’t even heard of.
Not that I am bragging, because I learned about it only in Colombia.
Soon we’ll be heading towards the islands that you cannot even see on the google maps!

Where are you from?

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