20/06/2010 Day 17
overcast cold 10 Deg C to 12 Deg C, rainy, drizzle all day.
Had to put our rain gear on shortly after starting. Exit town on the main road then onto small side road which is being resurfaced. Through grey misty drizzle, can’t see views beyond 1 km. Then turned onto 933 to Wodzislaw which is a conurbation strip of houses 10 km long. The shops on route were open to our surprise. We thought a very catholic country, everything would be shut. The continuous housing belt went on to Jastrzebie with out break. Jastrzebie is a coal mining town. Saw a pit head from the road and they are just starting to process the poor quality coal out of the old slag heap next to the pit which has 20 year old pine trees growing on top of it. Many of the houses we passed today had coal fires burning. Some with very poor sulphurous coal, yellowish thick smoke. For the first time this trip we had to resort to lunch in a bus shelter. After lunch we put our rain gear on to keep warm. It did start raining again shortly afterwards. Jaztrzebie had enormous high rise accommodation blocks all in bad repair. One looked partially demolished. Lunch was at Pinowek. After we crossed the 81 we got into better country but the road today has been pot holes all the way and compounded by the foundation being soft causing a continuous rut from the lorry weight. Could just see Zb Laka lake with a lone sailing yacht before entering Pszczyna. Went to the Bison park on the way in 5 zlt each. There is a big festival in Pszczyna. Silesia Day which they call Solvenia day. Silesia is the local region. We tried to push our bikes into the park to see the celebrations but were stopped by Scorpion Police. Went to Hotel, then went for a walk round the event. Stalls of Tat and lots of sweets. Lots of stalls selling food – barbeque sausage, chips, hog roast. Hotel 260 zlt including breakfast. There are a lot of people here. Election day.
Passed very close to a stork in a field today. Have seen lots all the way through our trip on nests and flying in the distance. Couldn’t get the camera out before he flew off.