With only a week to go to the end of this year’s Jarmark, in the old town of Gdansk, it is best that you visit soon, if you’d like to catch a large number of Polish (and now international) crafts, art, food, knick-knacks , tic-tacs, trinkets, clothes, music, shows and entertainment….
Definitely there is also a lot of junk and rubbish, but there is also a lot of beautiful things you will find, such as a pair of solid silver plated feather earrings I bought for myself.
More than buying anything, it is that feeling of a bustling market in spiderwebbing beautiful old town streets is wonderful, if you are not averse to crazy crowding.
The Jarmark can get heavily populated with over 70,000 people visiting each day and doubling up in numbers over the weekend.
Still to be a part of something that has historic value is tremendous. The Jarmark started as a trading market about 750 years ago during the Dominican order, where everything from Russian furs to Polish Amber, to Czech glass, Italian gingerbread and Kashubian ceramics would be on display to trade and buy.
Closing my eyes I try to go back to that time, imagining what people would wear, what they would eat, sing and how they would move and converse.
There were definitely more horse drawn carriages, live music, dance and cabaret. The air was probably less polluted, and the number of people more sparse. But for sure there were as many smiing traders, thugs, and storytellers, as there are today.