I was very pleased to see the movie review of “The Way Back,” a film by Peter Weir starring Colin Farrel, Jim Sturgess, Ms. Saoirse Ronan and Ed Harris. The movie tells the story of seven individuals who escape from a soviet Gulag in 1940. It is inspired by “The Long Walk,” a book by Sławomir Rawicz. You will note that the film is showing in limited release at local area theaters, and it might not be around long, so vote with your movie ticket dollars and lets hope the movie does well and brings a piece of Polish history to a wider audience than just Polonia. In fact, I encourage all of our readers to spread the word among non-Polish friends to see this film.

I was also pleased to see a Warsaw jazz club, Tygmont, included among the 100 best jazz clubs in the world by the America’s Down Beat magazine. I am reminded of my trip to Poland when, with my brother Frank and several other friends we met on our ten-day tour of Poland, we spent a late night in some of Krakow’s jazz clubs located around the perimeter of the largest Medieval town square in Europe, with the famous Sukiennice at its center. It was a warm spring night, the square was teeming with people well after midnight and the strains of top – flight jazz drifted in the air. I am sure we didn’t actually visit Tygmont that night, because the club is celebrating its tenth anniversary this year and our trip was in the more distant past, but jazz is a very popular genre now, as it was then, and what I heard in Krakow was as good as any I’ve been exposed to.

Another item that caught my attention among the news from Poland is the growth in food exports from Poland since becoming part of the European Union. In a world market of economic turmoil, Poland continues to weather the storm and is becoming a food market for its neighbors. Shrewdly, Poland is looking beyond Europe and developing supply lines to places so far afield as China and Mexico. Russia is also targeted as a market for increased food exports. If they cut of our oil, maybe we could starve them into submission!

Thanks to Frank Dmuchowski we have a report on the exhibit of the works of Polish born painter Liliana Kryńska on the campus of the Orchard Lake Schools in the Cardinal Maida Library. Frank tells us that there will be a closing reception Sunday February 6, 2011, which would be a good time (and obviously a last chance for this particular showing) to view the exhibit. Enjoy it if you are able to attend.

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