22 March 1980

Tartars and Lenin in Lublin

We spend the morning walking about the old town. There is not one single restaurant that is open for business. Also, most shops are closed so we can't buy a funnel, which we would need to fill our car's tank with the black market fuel we carry in the trunk.

In the afternoon we drive to Sandomierz, where we contact the family of Elzbieta P., our colleague at SGPiS who is the resident "przewodnicząca " (a kind of student/administrator) in the Sabinski dorm with Ann. They are extremely welcoming and of course absurdly overfeed us.

A young lady called Ulla offers to take us around town. We visit the Cathedral, whose walls are largely covered with bizarre paintings of horror scenes depicting the repeated Tartar invasions during the XIII century. People gutted, quartered, eviscerated. The friendliest thing the Tartars apparently did to the locals was to behead them. There is also some depictions of Jewish ritual murders of Christians. A bizarre Church indeed.

After a while a friend of Ulla's shows up. He tries,unsuccessfully, to make a few moves on Ann, but then resigns himself to showing us around the Lenin museum, overflowing the images of the revolutionary leader during the various phases of his rocambolesque existence.

The last highlight of the day is a long tunnel, about 420 meters, that was used by the local population to hide from the Tartars.

As we go to sleep it comes to mind that Lenin was of partial Tartar descent.

Lenin the part-Tartar (www.saveyourheritage.com)

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