Thursday, August 23, 2007
I'm gonna be really pretentious for a second and pretend that I can become best buds with extremely important people, which would allow me to have an enormous friend crush on Pani Henryka Krzywonos. Pani Krzywonos worked in Gdansk as a tram conductor in 1980 when the August Strikes began, and she stopped her tram in the middle of an intersection to start a public transportation strike. Today, thanks to my super contacts at the archiwum, I got the chance to meet her, which was an utterly humbling and inspiring experience. In one beautiful long narrative she told me of her experience in Solidarity and under Martial Law. She escaped being imprisoned by going into hiding, was found and beaten by the police more than once, and went so far as marrying a good friend to change her name from the one well known by the police. Her heroism continues today, as she and her husband have opened up their home as a family orphanage, and she is now the mother of 14 (or maybe 40? I get really confused with numbers in Polish) children. I love my thesis topic. Though right now I have no idea how I'm going to incorporate all the different material I've gathered. All I can imagine writing is the already long "thank you" page.