As we spend the day walking around Krakow, Poland, we thought we would let Ella give you a quick lesson on seasons around the world, since we are absolutely freezing today!
The remains of the fortifying wall around Krakow.
It’s hot in Thailand, hotter in India, freezing in Poland, and perfect in New Zealand. It’s very confusing after a while. Half the time I don’t even know what season it actually is, cause it’s never like it is at home. We decided to try to explain for those who don’t know, why on earth it’s not all the same. It’d be much simpler if it was, would it not?
The Earth is basically chopped in half (figuratively of course) by this giant imaginary line called the Equator. Above the Equator is the Northern Hemisphere, and below that is the Southern Hemisphere. Whatever season it is in the Northern Hemisphere, it’s the opposite in the Southern.
For example, when it’s summer in Tennessee and everyone’s sweating and it’s so humid you could practically drink the air, it’s winter and cold in Australia. Australia is in the Southern Hemisphere and America is in the Northern; so if it’s spring in the States, it’s fall in Sydney. It makes sense if you believe.
When it’s freezing in Britain, people are swimming in New Zealand. Just something to throw you off your axis (HA! Science puns, I kill myself XD), we traveled to Thailand when it was winter in the States. It was burning up though, but that’s because Thailand is extremely close to the equator. The closer you are to the equator, the hotter it gets no matter what season. Now why is it so hot at the equator? Why are the seasons different in the different hemispheres? Great questions, I’ll tell ya!
Main Market Square with St Mary’s church
Now, if you’ll all join me for a little elementary science lesson. The Earth spins on a tilted axis while rotating around the Sun. So, in summer when we’re in the U.S. because of the way the Earth is tilted, we’re closer to the Sun; and naturally it’s warmer. In the winter it’s the opposite, we’re farther away. When the Northern Hemisphere is farther, the Southern Hemisphere is closer; so it’s warmer.
Town Hall Tower
The way the Sun shines on our lovely planet, it’s almost directly above the equator all the time. It’s usually always extremely hot on the equator, because of the way the Sun hits it. (You mustn’t try to tan on the equator, or in Thailand for that matter; you will get burnt.) Sorry if I’m overloading you with not so thrilling information here, but you must learn. Do not judge what you do not understand. Ok…soooooooo
I’m going to recap for your sake and mine. The seasons are opposites in the different hemispheres, the closer you get to the equator the hotter and more sunburned you’ll become. And something I didn’t mention, it’s always very cold in the Poles because the Sun hits it at a very tiny angle, barely shining on it. Basically, different hemisphere, different season. You’re welcome, the end.
Wawel Cathedral and Castle
We also want to share with you one of our favorite Polish legends, since it seemed to us Poland has lots of legends!
Our guide shared this legend and our version comes from the myths and legends website. The English translation is a little off.
A myth submitted to the site by Sophie Scott-James:
“In Poland, a long time ago, in a den at the foot of Wawel Hill, there lived a terrible dragon. None of the inhabitants of the city of Krakow, from the poorest beggar to His majesty King Krak,
didn’t know where it had come from and how it got there.
Everyone always trembled with fear. Always having the scary thought that the knights guarding the dragon made their hair stand on end when they heard the monster roar.
People said there was no weapon and no way that they were going to defeat the dragon.
(Bones from the Wawel Dragon)
As the days past the dragon made himself feel more at home living there which scared the villains even more.
One day King Krak told a poem to the people of Krakow:
He who once and for all puts this dragon down
Shall recieve my sceptre and my royal crown,
So come and defeat this most horrid beast
And win my daughters hand and a wedding feast.
After that many brave and valient knights made their way from different countries to reach Poland to defeat the dragon.
Swords and arrows shattered on its scaly body as if on a shield. But nobody was able to kill this dragon or even drive it away. Time passed, the dragon laid waste to the grounds of Krakow. Fewer knights came every day. More people deserted the town, until one day a young man, a shoemaker known to know one, knocked on the gates of the town. He bore no arms and wore no armour. Some twine, a needle,and sharp mind were his only weapons. The guards wouldn’t let him in unless he immediately went to see the king.
King Krak had heard what the boy was saying and decided to put some trust in him so he could have a go.
The boy said that he would need: lambskin, some sulphur and mustard seed. The king nodded his acceptance to him.
All night long the shoemaker spent hard working on his plan. Local residents would peer through the window staring at his work.
He took the lambskin, filled it with sulpher, pitch and mustard seed, and skillfully sewed up the hole of the lambs belly.
Everyone was now wondering what the morning would bring.
At sunrise the shoemaker set off to see the dragon with his bag of his ideal plan.There he laid his bait and quickly hid in the nearby bushes waiting to see what was going to happen.
The dragon awoke. The dragon knew he was hungry, so he walked a bit for food. Suddenly the dragon saw a dead lamb(as it looked to him),
looked at it and greedily jumped down to eat it and swallowed it whole with his jaws.
The dragon suddenly went “BANG!” and exploded. Exactly what the shoemaker had planned.
The villagers went silent. Then the sudden cheer began. All the knights ran to the bottom of the hill. The dragon was dead. But one thing was not. The river Wistula had been gulped up.”
Our guide added they had many children, and that is why the people of Poland are so beautiful!