Well that was fun! An early start (6.10am flight) with Ryanair to Krakow airport looked promising to begin with. Then we circled Krakow airport over a thick bank of fog for 20 minutes before getting diverted to Rzeszow (pronounced sheshov but with the sh's more like Zh in Zhivago). Ryanair cheerfully promised us buses for the 100 mile journey back to Krakow but Fr Marcin and I decided to take a taxi - otherwise we would have arrived in Krakow just in time to leave again. We managed to knock the asking price down by about 40% by negotiating. (This was the sort of negotiation where you walk away determinedly, saying you are going to get the bus.)
Things did not get better immediately. The road from Rzeszow to Krakow is a single carriageway which is currently being upgraded. The problem is that all the bridges and several sections of road are being upgraded at the same time. So it took about 4 hours with a few stops such as this:
Never mind. We got to Krakow at about 2pm which left us a good time to have a look round while it was still light. Unfortunately, the fog was still quite thick and the "sights" were not really visible to the naked eye. By nightfall, the fog and the lighting gave the city a lovely atmosphere. We visited several of the Churches in the City and I was left gasping in wonder at one after another. Photos of all that later.
We were staying at Fr Marcin's Alma Mater, the monastery of the Canons Regular of the Lateran.
The building contains a seminary with rooms for the students, common room, a couple of chapels and all sorts of medieval artefacts.
There is a separate enclosure with living quarters for the priests in the community:
I was very impressed by the whole setup. I joined the community for Mass in the evening in their stupendous Church (photos of that in due course.) Compline was in the small chapel in the seminary. The students and priests get on easily together and there is a sensible rule of life with a good sense of community. The first Mass is at 6.30am so that the students can have breakfast and then go out to one of the teaching Institutes in the City for their studies.
I was given the "Bishop's Room" which was very well kept and contained some beautiful pieces of furniture. The bricks are not showing in the wall because of the plaster falling off: the rendering is left bare in some places to show the original building material.