Krakow is clean. The cleanest place I’ve ever been. Everything is pleasant and well ordered. That’s why it was such a surprise when a chap asked me if I wanted to see some pole dancing at 1 o’clock in the afternoon. Now, would that be a Pole dancing , a pole dancer or a pole dancing Pole? I was poleaxed and just said no.
I wandered around to the main square , Rynek Glowny, where I got chatting to Robert Paluch. He works for the city’s refuge department and was sweeping the square all day today for double pay . He supports Wiarusy Igolomia, a team low down in the Polish pyramid . Robert is a funny chap. He told me it wouldn’t be a good idea to play in the square because the police might give me a ticket . I guessed this wouldn’t be for the Lion King . I took a chance and went about trying to cajole the locals into playing . They were having none of it . After all it was Sunday ..lovers were loving , shoppers were shopping and parents with screaming toddlers were trying to keep a lid on things in the hot afternoon sun. A policeman came over at one point and said that I must move on or risk a ticket . What if it was for the Lion King and I was missing out ? I decided not be a fool and ask this question.
I wondered through the very pleasant indoor shopping centre to the other side of the square. I’d been trying to get a game going for about an hour ... the longest time ever apart from another Sunday in South Carolina.
Just when this was becoming a struggle ....a Geordie stag do came to the rescue ! (Krakow is becoming a popular destination for the doomed ) Callum was the stag and had 8 staggerers in tow . Absolute top blokes. They all looked in various states of disrepair after 2 days and nights on the lash, but they accepted the challenge within seconds . I joined one of the teams to even up the sides . 5-a-side.
After an initial 5 minute stalemate , we took the lead with a swift passing move and a neat slotted finish . We made it two before half-time but the beer was taking its toll now . Some of the boys were sweating floods of Guinness whilst others gasped for air ...we got it to 3-1 before they finally ran out of steam .
Brilliant lads and a great quick fire game from nowhere . Now, about that ticket ?