Vignettes from a morning walk 2

A blue sky at 5 am makes a walk irresistible. This morning I decide to walk between bus stops for a start, and then view the open air poster gallery on the fence of Łazienki gardens.

Between bus stops

The route I travel on the bus goes along a rather grand street, which invites my walking feet. It’s wide and treelined and not very busy, at least not at 5am! The buildings are varied and the light superb. The architectural centrepiece is the neoclassical building built in the late 1920s, now the Ministry of Religious Affairs and Education, during the war Gestapo headquarters.


There is still an encampment along Belvederska near the Botanic Gardens and Łazienki protesting against the government’s ultra-conservative, anti-democratic stance. An enigmatic (to me anyway) line of upturned wheelbarrows are part of the protest. Each one contains a photo of a person and the words “one way ticket”. The banners read “civic democratic movement” and “down with fascism”.

Open air gallery of the Royal Łazienki

I love this gallery. The posters, a favourite art form here because I have far more skill reading graphics than Polish words, are displayed on the tall railings under an avenue of trees. The exhibition is part of a series showcasing poster artists from different countries, this time Gieliju Escher and Lex Reitsma from the Netherlands.


I am smarting at my failure to capture the sudden luxuriance of lime flowers, light and wind and angle all conspiring against me, when a more dramatic failure occurs. My camera stops operating. It tells me it’s recovering data, and then to switch off switch on, but nothing happens. For the rest of the walk half my mind is strategising my photographic future. However, the other half registers things I may not otherwise have noticed. Sound for a start: the clear trilling of an unknown bird; the soothing coo of a pigeon; the sound of a hefty crow landing on cobblestones. 

I’ve walked through Łazienki many times, but never along today’s track. It’s deliciously ungroomed and a waterway reflects a small building with grand columns, and lions along the waterline. It’s backed by a tower inspired with hoeroglyphivs. It strikes me that I will never see exactly the same scene again, so I concentrate on storing it in my memory.

Back home, I transfer photos to my iPad, draw a deep breath, and take the camera over to show J the details of its demise. It functions perfectly.

About morselsandscraps

A retired Australian who spends a lot of time in Warsaw, and blogs as a way of life.
This entry was posted in architecture, art, early morning, photos and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

32 Responses to Vignettes from a morning walk 2

  1. Sue says:

    5am? (squeals)… I applaud your devotion to photography and exploration….I need too much sleep to even contemplate such an hour, well done! And don’t you just hate intermittent faults in things? The inborn malice of inanimate objects….


  2. Lucid Gypsy says:

    I do like these grand buildings, an apartment with a balcony on the top floor would be good as a holiday home. Striking images of the zigzag gates, but I was awake at 3.45 listening to a barking fox and took ages to get back to sleep, so my tired brain can’t work out why there are building inside. Is it a courtyard kind of place? The poster gallery is cool, my favourite is the love of three oranges. So glad your camera is okay, have a lovely day 🙂


  3. desleyjane says:

    Isn’t that always the way. It doesn’t misbehave when you report it to someone! You’re right, the light is wonderful! Goes to show how you are rewarded for a 5am wake up! It’s still dark here at 5am. And 6am. And 7am!!


  4. restlessjo says:

    Life! 🙂 But so many interesting captures, Meg. My eyes were on stalks! 🙂 Let me scoot back and have a look. Love the second big photo, with the shadow of the tower, then you have ‘diagonals’ ( 🙂 ) and those wonderful wheelbarrows., then ‘pick a poster’. What more could I want?


    • The shadow is my favourite – not something you’d see later in the day. I wish I knew what the wheelbarrows mean, but photographically they were a godsend. And I went back yesterday to capture what I missed. Have a blessed week and may sun shine.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Heyjude says:

    I am so enjoying your city strolls – so much to see. And I am so glad your camera is functioning again and that you didn’t lose your data.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Peta Kaplan says:

    What interesting photos of the designs within buildings. A good friend of mine is getting married in Warsaw soon. I hope to make it to her wedding. Your post gave me a little glimpse into the beauty of the city.



    • This is my sixth visit since 2012, and I’m here for a year, so I have leisure for rambling away from the big sights, and I’m living in a parky part of the city. I hope you have time to enjoy the city a bit when you come for the wedding. Is your friend Polish?


  7. quollgirl says:

    I love the wheelbarrows deeply.


  8. Paula says:

    I also fail to see the metaphor of upturned wheelbarrows, but you took a stunning photo of them. This 5 am photographic walk is special. The few shadows that you managed to find give scenes forbidding reflections. Beautiful work! My favourite is the facade with the reflected spire.


  9. Rosemary Barnard says:

    My favourite, which you have probably already guessed, is the window with surrounding shadows and reflections in the window panes. A beautiful collection, yet again, Meg. If you still have a malfunctioning camera by the time you return to Australia, it might be worth sending it to a wonderful man in Perth, who not only fixed my camera, at very reasonable price, but told me that people send him their cameras from all over the country. He loves cameras from all eras and works miracles for the owners.


    • If I still have a malfunctioning camera by then, I suspect I’ll have a new one! Welcome back from your travels, and it’s good to have you walking with me. I’m not at all surprised by your favourite. I’m about to shower for Gdańsk and tame my newly acquired fringe, the result of linguistic incompetence.


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