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  • Alina Cebula

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Tatras National Park and the mountain range has a special place in my heart. For me, it isn't just a pretty place. Poland is my home country, but I lived abroad for most of my adult life. As a child I never really travelled anywhere beyond my home town, with the exception of visiting my grandparents who lived near the Tatras National Park.  Now that I'm temporarily back in Poland, I have a chance to explore and get to know the culture and landscape a lot better. It means a lot to me to be able to not just explore the local nature but also get to know myself and my family roots a lot better. 


Even though this is my "home" country, for me, this is a journey into the unknown. I'm exploring places that I never knew were there, and meeting people that speak different language that I'm used to hearing outdoors. As I travel and explore these places, I make notes about each landscape, describing the place, the weather conditions, how it made me feel - this way I can stop and think about it. It is in no way forced and I found that otherwise, I leave the feelings and the detail in the mountains as I leave.

At Kondradzka kopa - my destination place, and my favourite place I visited during my last trip, I noticed the rocky paths smoothed out by thousands of people walking past, commercial access (cable car) brings a lot of people to this peak and allows to get to a place you wouldn't be able to get to otherwise. The weather was beautiful, the low Autumnal sun was casting long shadows all day. There were no clouds in the sky, and when sheltered behind a rock it was pleasant and warm. Otherwise - wind was howling and twirling up and down the peaks hurtling the golden grasses back and forth. A family of happy birds swiftly flew through the mountain tops with the wind. All of this - beautifully calming yet overwhelming, the vast landscape, layered to infinity was something I couldn't quite grasp. Seeing tiny determined people hiking on the paths was unreal - it was only then that I could really see the scale of these mountains.



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