Saturday in Praga

It’s quiet this weekend in Praga, where I live, in the sleepy residential neighborhood across the Vistula river in Warsaw. The farmer’s market persists outside my apartment building, despite the weather having turned to fall. The trees here, tall ones, are changing to yellow and red at the edges, but the bulk of their leaves are still green.

Someone in the market with a megaphone or microphone calls out something in Polish, every hour or so, with an intonation and rhythm that sounds like a circus barker or a racetrack announcer. I think he’s telling us to get it while we can–I can’t imagine these outdoor vegetable stands are going to make it all the way through a Warsaw winter.

My next-door neighbor is using the weekend to do some renovations. A hammer, a drill.

Today I ran across the news, dated August 22, 2011, that TJT-SF is closing its doors after this season. This is a theater I had a great deal of interaction with in 2007-2008. I am very sorry to hear this news. I had always hoped that I might collaborate with them again some day.

“In these challenging economic times, we simply cannot raise enough money to continue to produce work at the artistic level that is central to our mission of creating and presenting new Jewish plays.”

– from the announcement of the final season

It’s a difficult time to be making theater in the United States, and a strange time to be an expat in Poland, enjoying the richesse of a culture that so wholeheartedly supports its theater artists.