Melancholic trips with fado

Sunday trips may not exist without music. Two weeks ago I had happines to listen to on the radio an interesting interview with Portuguese fado singer – Mariza and admire and even touch melancholic winter landscapes, which harmonized so perfectly with her full of postive nostalgy fado songs flowing from the car speakers.

Mariza talked about her love of journeys and Portuguese melancholy. Almost whole my life I had an intuition that expereicne of melancholy is common for us all, wherever we live, and it only may be different in its tones, but never in essence. My intuition got true when I heard that Portugese fado, from far western Europe almost on the eastern outskirts of the continent.

Winter journey, eastern melancholy and fado

40 kilometres and 30 minutes drive from the busy downtown, road across the boreal forest of majestic, soaring pines and firs, all covered with thick layer of snow. I can’t imagine a week without a trip to this primeval forest. It is one of these places, where you are not able to believe that God does not exist. Silence, mystery, beauty and emotion, intuition that He is.

But the outskirts of the forest are not less mysterious and beautiful. When you add to all of these melancholic fado flowing slowly from the car speakers and interviewd fado singer Mariza talking about her love of journeys and Portuguese melancholy, it gets just real wonder!


to be continued…

Autumn memories – melancholic countryside – part 2

Lightly hilly landscapes, all colours of the autumn – red, yellow, brown, orange and still green forests, grasses and picturesque groves; small villages lost between delicate hills; medieval hill forts, in 11th – 13th centuries, belonging to Ruthenians, some of them from 14th century were established by Lithuanians; many of the Ruthenian hill forts got conquered and burnt probably by Yotvingians – last Indians of Europe – as called them Polish Noble Prize Winner Czeslaw Milosz – the mysterious tribe of Baltic origin, totally destroyed by Teutonic Knights. Tiny and cozy wooden houses with their gable roofs and open to guests – porches, wooden crosses by the side of the roads. And all of these in the mystic rays of the setting autumn sun. Dostoevsky used to say: “Beauty will save the world”, and he was right!


Winter boreal forest

About one week ago, in Knyszynska Forest, boreal forest in the north eastern Poland.

Unfortunately, I was not lucky enough to take the picture of the small doe, staring at me with interest. It was waiting, standing on the road as enchanted, but I could not take my camera out of the case, as my fingers were stiffen, and when at last I managed to do it, it just ran to the the forest and disappeared between pines and firs…

Late autumn forest

Boreal forest, almost 20 kilometres north of quite big town (300.000 inhabitants) – Knyszynska Forest, not more than 30 minutes drive from the downtown, taking into account staying in traffic jams. Mystic, majestic and mysterious primeval forest. 

I leave my car on the sandy road and walk it down. That road is straight as an arrow, on the both sides of it – slender, soaring pines and firs, only sometimes I may notice maples, ashes, elms, sycamores or birches. Traces of the does, elks, deers, wild boars on the sand. Sometimes it is possible to hear the tramp of the fleeing unnoticeable animals.

And I am recalling the story read in a local magazine about a woodsman, who found somewhere here part of the sword’s edge lost in the Middle Ages…

Knyszynska forest – Puszcza Knyszynska

Only 15 kilometres north of  quite big town (almost 300.000 inhabitants), no more than 20 minutes drive from downtown. I remember times, when it was possible to reach this place by bike. Now it is task only for stronlgy determined people, who do not mind taking real risk. The road was planned as a Via Baltica connecting southern and northern Europe. In fact, plan has not been realized, but it is used by countless TIRs going to Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia.

Even though, the forest is one of the most mysterious, mystic and beautiful places, whiche I have ever seen in my life.  Lavishly green even in November (these pictures were taken on 11th November), fabulous as if from The Chronicles of Narnia, ideal to contemplation, full of magic and inner hidden life. When I was approaching a pasture, heard the tramp of fleeing animals, probably herd of does, maybe even deer.

Soaring, slender and majestic pines and firs, lavishly green and soft as a pillow moss, delicately shrouded in the mist, create unique atmosphere of this place. There are no villages in the vicinity, not to mention towns. Only blissful quiet and peace…

Next time we will go in the search of human traces in this forest, especially in its rich history…

To be continued…

Rybniki – village in Knyszynska forest, early spring

Old cobblestone road across the village.

One of the most picturesque villages in Knyszynska Forest (North Eastern Poland, 15 kilometres north of Bialystok).

During the Second World War place of the Polish Home Army’s vivid activity.

Old wooden village, located in the vast clearing, surrounded with sky-reaching pines, almost always silent and melancholic, even though near it busy road cuts the forest. Red-tile gable roofs glimmer in the spring sunshine.