One of the pleasures (?) of moving is that as you are packing up you discover things that you forgot you had. In some cases they find their way into the jumble sale box but in others they bring back forgotten memories and are carefully transported to your new home.
During our Warsaw days we were lucky enough to be included in a music appreciation group that had been organized by a most remarkable man: Y C Pan* or just Pan as he was known by everyone at Foreign Affairs. Once a month an array of people of Pan’s acquaintance would gather at someone’s house and bring along a record to play. There would be a pause as some point in the evening and a light supper would be served. When we first began attending these evenings the music was predominately classical; however as time went on it expanded (often much to Pan’s dismay) to include jazz, Broadway, musique concrete, folk, and on one memorable evening rhythm and blues.
There group could vary from ten to sometimes as many as thirty – there was always the core group: several people from the Embassy (Poles and Canadians), a law professor from the University and her artist husband, a member of the Polish Parliament, and a ceramic artist, and his wife who wrote children’s books. They were a lovely couple and they expressed their regret that they just didn’t have enough room in their apartment to host a gathering to reciprocate the hospitality of their Canadian friends.
However just before we left they invited us for Sunday lunch – a time normally reserved for family so we were greatly honoured. And even more so when after lunch they presented us with a going-away gift that Tadeusz had made to remember them by.
In one of our many moves (this is the fifth since Warsaw) they were left in a cupboard and rediscovered when we were packing up. They brought back forgotten memories of those musical evenings, a lunch in their small but lovely apartment, and two people that we knew for a brief but wonderful time in our travels. Their gift has come with us to PEI and I found a place for them in our new home. They are no longer hidden away.
*The Polish word for Mister is Pan and for Mrs is Pani – so Pan and his wife were called Pan Pan and Pani Pan by their Polish friends.
On this day in 1872: Trade unions are legalised in Canada.