Saturday, August 2, 2014

Warsaw Uprising!

Today, when we were walking around the city, there were a bunch of people in Warsaw sporting the anchor-like logo of the Polish resistance..

Turns out that today is the 70th anniversary of the Warsaw Uprising, a major campaign by the resistance forces to kick the nazis out of Poland, starting with Warsaw.

Before we knew what the day was about, we saw a display of posters in the courtyard of the royal palace, describing the resistance and with photos of the city, a bunch of individual resistance heroes and Home Army units.

Later, we happened to be at the memorial site just before the short ceremony of remembrance.
We didn't know what was going on, and after seeing people just hanging out near the big statues, we thought that was all, and started to leave.
A more senior Polish gentleman, probably in his 60s, indicated with Polish and good old sign/body language that something would happen in a little while (15 minutes), so we sat down to wait and see..
Posing with the statues before the ceremory
On the hour, the crowd stood, and we with them, as flares were lit and air raid sirens wailed..
Ceremony started with air-raid sirens and flares

Smoky..


When the flares died, the siren wail came to an end and a chant echoed across the square. In Polish, so we have no idea what they said.

It was a short ceremony, with no speeches or anything, just the sirens, flares and a chant.
Then the crowd dispersed, some bought and lit candles by the statues on their way out.

It was cool to just randomly stumble across this while out sightseeing in Warsaw..

On our way back from the memorial area, we were passed by about 200 bikers, most wearing the anchor symbol and/or sporting the flag. Very patriotic!
Interesting mix of rides, from Harleys to Vespas..