I booked a short vacation to Gdańsk, I didn’t go back home anymore.

Can Italian be in love with bigos? What surprises him the most in Poland? Read more and meet Juri from European Transport Control Centre.



How did your story with Poland begin?

I’ve always wanted to live abroad but I was never able to choose a place to go. During the first covid lockdown out of curiosity I decided to do some research on google to find out which is the best city in Europe to live in from a quality-of-life perspective. First was Zurich, but it would hurt me too much to spend so much money on living. But surprisingly Gdańsk was in second place, and my first thought was: “What is Gdańsk?”. After some more research, I was too curious to see this place, so I booked a short vacation to Gdańsk. The fun fact is that I’m still here on this “short vacation”, I didn’t go back home anymore.

What were your thoughts on Poland before moving there and how does that compare to how you see it now?

Well, everyone I know from my home thought I’m crazy. As for every country, there are always  stereotypes, and for Poland they aren’t really positive. But none of those are true (in Tri-city). It was the first time where I feel so welcomed in a country and people are very curious and gentle.

The Polish language is always a big challenge for foreigners. Tell us about your experience.

The Polish language is beautiful to hear but terrible to learn. I’ve learned very basic phrases and words to be able to communicate in stores or restaurants, but I don’t think I’ll further learn the language. I found it very interesting as many words mean the same thing in Italian or other Latin languages.

What do you miss most about your country?

What I miss the most from home are the mountains. I come from a region called Southtyrol and we have one of the most beautiful mountains in the world, the Dolomites.

What do you think about Polish food?

I was very surprised to get to know Polish cuisine. It’s very similar to German or Austrian cuisine. I’m in love with bigos, buraczki and pierogi. I would say that my current diet has one Italian and one Polish dish per day. As my mission is to reach 90kg of weight by the end of the year, I’m eating pierogi and spaghetti nonstop. Calories come to me!!

What Polish customs are either incomprehensible or surprising to you?

There are a few things that I don’t understand or that are not really used in my home country. I’ve never seen people drinking so much herbatka, and I don’t understand it.

Eating times are also completely different than in southern countries. We eat dinner late, around 8 or 9 pm, and here 6 or 7 pm, sometimes even 5 pm.

What was surprising or very nice to see was that people here follow the rules, there is respect. In my country it’s like being in a jungle with no rules, the strongest wins.

Also what surprised me a lot at the beginning is how bad the government is. I thought it couldn’t be worse than in Italy, but I was wrong.