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“Profoundly We Feel the Brotherhood of Our Fate” – in Poland this week

September 4, 2011

Last time I was in Poland was in 2004. I spent my birthday week on a visit to the Auschwitz and Birkenau death camps. The weather was fantastic, to the grief of our tour guide who was trying to describe the terrible living condition in incarceration, particularly in the cold winter… An incredible and indelible experience nevertheless. The tour guide can be proud of her job.

I will however be in Poland starting tomorrow, in Warsaw and Gdansk to be precise, as part of a week-long event that finds it motto in a 1981 message from Solidarnosc: “Profoundly We Feel the Brotherhood of Our Fate“. During an incredible work programme, activists from Egypt and Tunisia will to discuss and explore the political, economic and social construction in a post-revolutionary country.

Mind you, I’ve had a few ‘experience sharing’ meetings like those and, despite my original skepticism, some of those conversations have turned out to be both enlightening and inspiring… So I’m really looking forward! And, heading the line-up: Lech Walesa, no less. I’m more excited than a prepubescent Belieber going to a private concert would be. (yes, that’s the metaphor that crossed my mind).

And on September 10th, I’ll be a panelist in a conference in Gdansk, where I will share the stage with – total name dropping here – Bogdan Borusewicz, Marshall of the Polish Senate and one of the leaders of the workers’ movement (and a close collaborator of Walesa) as well as Prof. Jerzy Buzek, President of the European Parliament.

And of course I’m incredibly intimidated, not to say scared shitless. Will try to keep it together and share some interesting points on the panel!

I’ll definitely share some impressions along the way.

And a photo of me with President Walesa if I can get one. 😉

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