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Today, Warsaw is among the most vegan-friendly cities in Europe.

Memories of Poland

We spent a lot of time waiting in queues. For a kid, that was torturously boring. But mothers knew how to remind children this was their only shot at getting anything. Children were key to the process. You had to get in line several hours before the goods even arrived at the store, sometimes about 4pm.


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But nothing competed with the atavistic pleasure of banging on a malfunctioning television — it helped work out your frustration at the fact that everything was so shoddy. Still, this period was, in its own way, uniquely peaceful.

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It was very safe in our police state. There was no rat race. And while that was a source of backwardness, it was also a major advantage that disappeared after Longing for that old state of things has caused long-lasting, not always irrational nostalgia for communism. Of course, brought a unique atmosphere of excitement.

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I was living with my mother in a typically large and ugly block of flats. I was almost 10, but could feel the spirit of the time because my mother was so caught up in it. She was glued to the television, constantly sighing. They were intelligent, had a great sense of humour, and said things that had previously been unutterable. My mother would never have imagined something like this could happen. No one knew how the round-table discussions between the regime and the opposition would end.

The first free elections, 30 years ago on 4 June , marked a great victory for the Solidarity movement.

Sounds and memories from Poland

Suddenly everything accelerated. Everything became colourful and exotic.

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The omnipresent kitsch did not bother anyone. The first bazaars and the first entrepreneurial startups had already appeared.

She eventually gave in. Suddenly there were colourful key rings, Turbo gum with pictures of cars on the wrappers, the German-language magazine Bravo. In , the television programme lasted half an hour and was broadcast once a week and twice a week from with a simultaneous extension of its duration.

Sports programmes, puppet programmes for children and theatre performances were broadcast.

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Until , only one black-and-white programme was broadcast and in broadcasting in colour began. The TV was factory-adapted to receive only one channel therefore a channel switch was unnecessary.


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The TV was turned on by lifting the cover on the top of the casing under which there were two loudspeakers and control knobs. When in the s fascination with television took over the whole country, it was not easy to buy a television set. Production did not keep up with the demand, only several dozen pieces were produced daily at the TV plant.


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The purchase of a television set in shops was based on the vouchers assigned to the labour leaders and people of outstanding significance to culture, learning, defence and security of the country. He invites Rode to join the Society as well. However, both of them fall in love with the same girl they've met there. Then in a mission, Rode is killed. The story describes the changes in the life of the Vonuvask family as it goes through the years of prosperity and the years of dwindling vigor.