Saturday, October 30, 2010

A Little Polish Folklore

Legend has it that long ago a dragon took up residence in a cavern in Wawel (pronounced Vavel) Hill. He was called the Smok Wawelski (the Wawel dragon). Each day the evil dragon would kill the civilians, pillage their homes and eat their livestock. Many brave and wise men tried to dispatch the dragon and all failed. One day, Krak, a poor cobbler’s apprentice accepted the challenge. He stuffed a sheep skin with sulphur and set it outside the dragon’s cave. The dragon ate it and soon became incredibly thirsty. He turned to the Vistula River for relief and he drank and drank. But no amount of water could quell his aching stomach, and after swelling up from drinking half of the Vistula river, he exploded. The people of the settlement were so grateful to Krak for the demise of the dragon that they named the place after the young shoemaker. That is how Krakow got its name.

A metal sculpture of a dragon stands outside the Dragon’s Den and it breathes fire every five minutes.

Hubby and I spent Friday night at the Krakow Festival, a yearly fundraiser put on by the Elms College Polish Center of Learning and Discovery. They served a 6 course meal! Thankfully Eddie Forman played polka music for the dancing needed in between courses of great Polish foods. I do not need to eat for awhile.

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