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Mike's Adventure to Poland - 2002

Part 26: The Trip Home

We arrived at the airport early because we weren't sure how difficult security might be.  Scott, Robin, and I had no problem, while Joe and Esther got hassled for Joe's eastern European alcohol collection.

Robin and I weren't sure how many zloties to save for the cab fare and any other fees we may have, so when we got to the airport, we hit the duty free shop and spent our remaining zloties on vodka.  And Scott and I used the rest to buy a last Zywiec and quick meal.

Chopin VodkaBison Vodka
The vodka I bought in Poland.  The Zubrowka Vodka actually has a blade of grass in it that the Polish buffalo eat.  When I polled the Poles as to what the best vodka was, the overwhelming answer was "Finlandia."  Okay, so I rephrased my question and asked what the best Polish vodka was.  Zubrowka was the most popular answer.

We flew to Amsterdam, and according to our itinerary, we started boarding our flight three hours before take-off.  Why so early?  The new international travel rules.  We had to recheck our luggage, go through security again, and answer all those interesting questions like "What were you doing in Poland?" and "Has anyone unknown to you asked you to carry any items?"  I was flagged by security because my carry-on was so heavy.  Why was it so heavy?  Because it was full of bottles of vodka that I picked up at the airport.

We flew home on a Northwest DC-10.  Northwest is phasing out all their DC-10s and replacing them with 757-300s, so this was kind of cool as I would be one of the last passengers on the DC-10.

Northwest DC-10
Northwest's DC-10.  A cool plane, but nearly extinct.

They have a soup in Poland called "zurek" that I loved.  When I left, I stopped by the supermarket and bought some packets of instant zurek soup mix.  Being the good responsible citizen I am, I declared it to customs when they asked if I was bringing in any food, so I got detained for about 20 minutes while I had to have my bag checked by the agricultural customs police.  And since the soup mix contained no meat, they finally let me bring it in...

Continue on to the Conclusion