7 July - The last full day in Poland for us. Some will be leaving a bit earlier in the evening. Others tomorrow morning. Me, I'm off to Prague.
This day was split in two. The morning was spent at the salt mines. An awesome sight and achievement in mining and engineering. And as we traveled down the 185 meters there were a lot of salt sculptures in the various chambers (think ice sculptures that don't melt and without the kissing swans). Many were about the origins of the salt mines or the people and animals that worked it. And, it being Poland, religious sculptures too. The coolest part was the salt church. A massive church with salt icons, en-bas relief, and salt crystal chandeliers.
But the true highlight of the day was listening to Ms. Homarata Rosa. She told an amazing story of how her family, led by her fathers sense of right, hid nine people, and helped four others find safe shelter, throughout the war. It demonstrated the true meaning of courage and righteousness. It made me want to know about the other 400 families in the hamlet.
I asked Ms. Rosa about that. What was it that made her father act differently from the others in the community? Weren't there other 'good people,' as she had described her father, in this group of 400 people? It was probably an unfair question. Who knows what that spark is inside of one that makes you act so selflessly in times of duress and in the face of absolute wrong.
The best part was that her father met her future father-in-law after the war in a shop. As the two men talked it became clear that they had followed similar paths. As such Ms. Rosa's father gave her permission to date the man's son, his rationale being that he must be okay coming from a family such as that.
And with a final group dinner, the trip came to a conclusion.