Monday, June 26, 2006

No Seer in Lublin

I made my connections this morning to Lublin, although I have to say it is maddening to spend the last 25 minutes creeping along at under 5 mph.

The weather today is rather hot (31 C or 88 F) and a little muggy. Although my hotel isn't air conditioned (the restaurant I ate dinner in last night was the first place with AC I've found in all of Poland), it has a nice view and is centrally located right in the middle of the Stare Miasto. This is the first Stare Miaso (old town) I've been in that wasn't reconstructed after the war since it survived relatively unscathed.

Unfortunately, the same cannot be said of the Jews of Lublin, one of the most important Jewish communities in Poland. I bought a guide book to trace the various Jewish sights in Lublin. I found the old cemetery (from the 16th century), but it was locked. After much difficulty I found the new cemetery, where there was a caretaker who let me in. Much of the cemetery was destroyed by the Nazis, with the Communists trying to finish the job. They've begun to do some restoration work, however.

From there I went to find the former yeshiva and the Jewish hospital, both of which survived the war (unlike their inhabitants). I also found the only active synagogue in town, but according to my guidebook (post 2001), they don't have enough members to form a minyan.

I made my way back to the main square to find this internet cafe. Along the way I passed two "Jewish" themed restaurant, one of which had Israeli music playing. I don't know if I'm going to eat dinner there tonight.

Time to go.

No comments: