In 2012, I was working for uTest on a new mobile testing product they had acquired from a development shop in Warsaw, Poland. In September of that year, I took a trip to Poland with Roy Solomon, who was uTest’s VP of Product and one of the cofounders. This was the first time I had been to Poland, and I my trip was an incredible mixture of working with good people, eating delicious food, and seeing a city that is a little off the beaten path for most Americans. On our last day, Roy suggested we do two things: go get some of the best coffee in the world and see Warsaw’s historic Old Town.
The coffee turned out to be a bit misleading. Roy, a homesick Israeli expat, was hoping to try the newly opened Warsaw branch of the Aroma Espresso Bar – an Israeli coffee shop that was one of his hometown favorites. I certainly recall the coffee was fine, but Roy was delighted. After enjoying the best coffee in Warsaw, we walked a few more blocks and finally arrived at Old Town.
Old Town itself is fascinating. One of the oldest and most picturesque parts of Warsaw, Old Town was destroyed during World War 2 along with the rest of the city. Following the war, it was rebuilt using the original bricks found in the rubble of the buildings. While it’s not a perfect recreation, it’s true to the historic spirit of Warsaw and remains one of the prettiest parts of the city.
As Roy and I were walking, I pulled out my camera and wanted to find a way to capture the location. The morning light was perfect on the buildings, and I loved the flow of the empty square around Sigismund’s Column. I snapped a few photos, but sort of felt like they wouldn’t be adequate. To my surprise, this one worked. The buildings, column, stairs, bricks on the ground, and pedestrian all work together as a whole – capturing the spirit of Old Town on that September morning in 2012.