Have you ever felt like being home when visiting a new country? Well, it happened to me and hope you will understand why after reading this short post which aims to describe my experience in Zielona Góra (PL). I travelled there together with Karol (ESR 5) in order to carry out my secondment at the University of Zielona Gora. I spent around one month but due to the enthusiasm and the load of work, this time flew away. However, for the first few days, according to the new world rules we are living in, we had to quarantine. The days were passing by very slowly. As soon as I was free, I was super excited to start the work at the Univeristy of Zielona Gora. It was a pleasure to meet with Prof. Robert Smoleński and Piotr Leżyński who were happy to have me and Karol there.
After an introductory meeting, we immediately started to work with Karol on a DC system dealing with cables impedance, transistors impedance, simulation models and so on. Day by day we learned how to use new instruments such as the Impedance measurement one and the EMI (electromagnetic) receiver present at the well-furnished and technological laboratory of the University of Zielona Gora. It was a nice work under dr Piotr Leżyński’s supervision. It was proficient that I could exchange some ideas with Waseem, another ESR within Scent Project, who helped me with the set up the experiment and the use of his precious Texas digital controller. I was recommended to treat with particular attention since it is a really “delicate” board.
Alongside my work at the University, I experienced some nice polish food at Karol’s family. His mother, who is such a sweet lady, cooked for us some delicious pierogi (you absolutely must try them, if it happens to you to be in Poland) and few other typical polish foods. His family was really welcoming, and I could learn some polish words. My favourite one is actually “Dziękuję”. It means “thank you” and I tried to use it a lot and apparently my pronunciation become acceptable after some initial difficulties. Yes, even though Polish language looks like a happy and light version of Russian, it is still hard and has some sounds which are difficult to be reproduced. Nevertheless, it was nice for me to try playing with some tongue twister and laugh in front of some nice beers. Of course, everyone of you knows that Poland is famous for beers, and it has a wide variety of artisanal ones and industrial ones as well. My favourite one was “Tyskie”. Alongside the huge production of beers, Zielona Gora is well known for its grapes and wines. Sometimes I could taste some nice white wine at the suggestive location of “Palmiarnia” which is located on the hill from where you can stare at very nice sunsets.
Finally, I would like to remark once again how welcoming polish are. I was introduced to different Karol’s friend and to Marianna’s family (who is Karol’s girlfriend). I was invited to some nice dinners with other polish food and bbqs at their wonderful garden. We had the best time watching the European championship matches. Of course, we were supporting Italy, my adopted country. Noteworthy during dinners at Marianna’s house is the time spent with a lovely dog whose name is Dharma. She is a shy quite old dog, who I felt in love with. At the beginning she was a bit diffident but soon she accepted me and obeyed to some my commands such as “Siad” (Sit) asking her to sit close to me or “Szukaj” while I was asking her to go and look for her favourite toy, a seagull doll.
So, I hope now you can understand why I felt like being home. Indeed, I really enjoyed my time in Poland and left this country with the desire to be back again in the future.