Though I’ve only been in Warsaw for a little over two weeks at this point, I feel as though I can navigate the city with relative ease. The city, to put it colloquially, is quite walkable and most of the interesting places to visit are no more than a few kilometers from my flat. If you’re not too familiar with Warsaw, Poland, or Eastern Europe in general, don’t worry. I myself had little understanding of the country or culture before arriving and when I took my first walk around the city I was a bit overwhelmed by what I saw. I’m not sure if it was culture shock or the surreal feeling of being in place that I’ve only read about in books and seen in movies. Regardless, after being immersed in the culture for the past few weeks, exploring the city, and researching their history and political climate at my internship, Warsaw no longer seems as foreign to me.
Over the past few weeks, I’ve been helping to perform research for culture.pl’s podcast on a litany of variegated topics, including Warsaw’s International Chopin Competition, Esperanto, Rosemary’s Baby (which I haven’t actually seen), David Bowie’s “Warszawa”, and much more. A very eclectic list, I know. Our goal is to get listeners interested in this fascinating region, and more specifically in this amazing, historical country. The best way to do this is by creating a variety of episodes that appeal to people with different interests, and I feel as though we’ve succeeded in this regard.
This week I’ve been working on the show notes for each of the episodes we have created so far. This involves creating an introductory “hook” for the episode, creating an outline of the episode, and assembling a reading list for anyone that may be interested in further exploring a particular topic after they finish an episode. In addition to this, I was also given permission to start writing an article for the website on Józef Rotblat, a Polish physicist who was one of the foremost activists for nuclear disarmament of the 20th century. He’s quite a remarkable individual and it will be a privilege to write an article for culture.pl that commemorates his selflessness and persistence.