Monday, May 12, 2008

Why were you in Poland, anyway?

Well my friends, I'll tell you the whole story. I want you to let your minds wander to the distant past. Travel with me back to a time of innocence, back to fall of 1991. The leaves are starting to turn gold, the air is crisp and the apples are hanging ripe on the tree in my backyard. Inside the house is a flurry of activity. I'm standing in front of a mirror, putting the final curls in my chin-length hair. I fiddle with the brooch on the front of my black brocade dress. I made it myself from a vogue pattern. My little brother, dressed as a waiter, is darting from room to room, pretending to be a spy. In the loft of the sun room, a fancy table is laid, all ready for a homecoming feast. The doorbell rings, my handsome prince arrives in a brand new gray suit. He's tall and blond, with broad shoulders and a goofy grin. This isn't his school's homecoming, it's mine. A year older than me, he'd graduated in June. His eyes are sparkling as I descend the staircase to meet him. No, it's not my beauty that's dazzled him, he's come with news. "I got my mission call today, I'm going to Warsaw, Poland!" It was a brand new mission, exciting and exotic. We talked about his dreams and plans, dancing and holding hands.
Flash forward to summer of 2006
My aunt in trying her best to cajole me into taking an exchange student. "Why would an exchange student want to live with us? We don't have any teenagers!" I reason.
"He's from Poland, L could speak Polish with him."
"Where would we even put him? On the couch?"
"Just think about it," she begged. "No one else will take him. If he doesn't have at least a welcoming family, they won't even let him on the plane." That got to me.
"Fine. If it comes down to him not being able to come, he can sleep on our couch for a week. How's that?"
Well, that was how things stood until I read his letter to his host family. He spoke of his fascination with America, his desire to spread his wings and have an adventure. He told us of his love for his family, and how much he helped out at home. That was it. I called my husband at work, and said, "Honey, I've found a puppy. He's from Poland, can we keep him?" He was thrilled, because he'd wanted him all along. He wasn't going to be the one with the extra burden, though, so he'd let me decide. So Kuba came. We found out later that the touching letter he wrote was all lies, he invented it out of whole cloth because his dad wouldn't let him go to a party until he'd written it. It was too late by then, we already loved him. Ah, Kuba, and his rap-loving soccer watching ways. Kuba's dad was thrilled to learn that he and L worked in the auto industry. They met at an NADA conference and hit it off famously. They attended classes together, and Marek learned more about what L does. He was impressed, and asked him to speak to a group of Polish dealership owners that night. They were impressed. They invited him to come to Poland and put on a seminar and training. Because this wasn't strictly for work, and in order for the trip to be kosher with corporate, I was invited to come along as his pay. We went, had a fabulous time, and I thought that was my first and last encounter with that magical (but very cold in November) land. Now, he's been invited again to do some teaching, and who gets to come? You guessed it, me. Woo hoo!

11 comments:

Jodi said...

What an amazing story! When do you go? SOunds fabulous- ly cold!!!

I also LOVED your IKEA post! I am still laughing! You could be a stand up comic!

Heeere's J-dude: said...

Well that explains everything. And here I thought you were getting your travel agent's license....Sounds like a great gig! Have fun and let you eat cake!

fivekidsandsomechocolate said...

Don't forget we all...(well, I)want recipes and cake demonstrations upon your return.

The Clan of the Crazies said...

And we're so glad that it didn't end with that date in '91!

The Bloxham Bunch said...

I'm with Angie on this one, I loved all the yummy treats you cooked last time, can we book you again for a repeat :)!!!!

My Three Sons said...

I echo Angie & Marianne! Hooray for Missy! I am so excited for you to get to go back again. You'll have to tell us all about this trip as well!

Laura said...

Ok Missy I have said it again and again and I will say it once again- YOU NEED TO WRITE A BOOK- the entry about your families "redneck ways" cracked me up to the core!! As do most of your entries- I even read it to a friend who doesnt know you--and now she wants to know you!!! DO YOU BALME HER??? NO indeed! You are gifted and HALARIOUS to boot!!!! You need to write a collection of your blogs at least I would buy it!!

Dweezleboss said...

I did NOT beg you!!! I merely asked nicely, a lot of times. I knew you really wanted a Polish rebel in the house. And you've never even thanked me. High Five!!

EarlGirl said...

Ok, you didn't beg, you implored me on your knees, wiping away a tear of desperation.

Alinde said...

I agree with Jodi, you really could be a stand up comic!! So how soon do you leave? how long to you get to stay? It sounds like a lot of fun.

Allison said...

Count me in on the demonstrations when you return! Tea and cakes...Mmmmm!