Polish PM Donald Tusk was in London yesterday. He was supposed to try and convince Poles living here to come back to Poland, by asking “Do you have a return PLan?’ (PL stands for Poland, of course). All that because the Polish government has launched a special site, where Poles living in the UK can get advice regarding moving their lives back to Poland.
Allegedly in the first 24 hours after the site was launched, it was ‘extremely popular’, although I would argue whether 150 questions asked in 24 hours is really that much, bearing in mind that there are anything between 500,000 and a million or even more recent migrants from Poland. But at least the government is eventually doing something useful apart from just saying ‘Come back!’.
A London-based Polish portal Moja Wyspa quotes unnamed ‘experts’ who predict that up to half a million Poles may go back home in the next few years. That’s just another finger in the air estimate – nobody really knows how many people have come to the UK from Poland in the first place, so how can they predict how many are planning, sorry, PLanning to return?! But it’s good to see someone wants to help them at last.
On an almost unrelated note, looks like Aussies are also abandoning the capital. I have certainly noticed that among my Australian friends…
CNN International has just had a week on Poland – called Eye on Poland. It created alot of buzz in Poland itself but also a lot of controversy, as some cities and regions have been criticised by Polish media for not stumping up the money to appear on an international news channel and grab the opportunity to tell the world who they are.
There are a few good videos from the show on CNN’s website. The show’s producers have asked people to send in their opinions about Poland. Of course, there was everything – some praised Polish economic achievements of the past couple of decades, some admired Polish spirit of independence, some expressed their admiration for Polish world aspirations, some critisised Poland for its allegedly worsening approach to eductaion and the fact that “the myth of Chopin is just a myth”.
But what do Poles actually think of their own country?
The next video from CNN’s website might be particularly interesting if you’re in Britain and have noticed that an abnormally large number of people in services and elewhere in recent years have acquired a strange, Central-European accent…
So will they stay or will they go?