As I warned Polish women in Krakow, there are American men who think of Poland as a land of beautiful feminine virgins who are longing to experiment sexually with American men. And so, sad to say, young men who go to Poland are often just like older men who go to Vietnam and Thailand: they're sex tourists. Cheap sex tourists, who think they can take some girl's virginity for the price of a cup of coffee or maybe a cocktail.
Incidentally, none of my readers should "date" tourists. Every girl of my mother's generation knew that Canadian girls should not, should not, should not, have too much to do with American boys on holiday. American Boy could do whatever and, since nobody knew his family and they weren't around to shame him into good behaviour, disappear back to the States. Amusingly, my father was an American boy. However, he was a foreign student. Foreign students have professors and deadlines; they can't just do whatever and go home. Also he was (and is) a devout Catholic.
I am glad that Julia is actually going to Poland, so she can see the reality of Polish life, which is that not all Polish women look like models, no matter what the stupid manosphere or homesick Polish men say. For me, the revelation began in the queue for the budget airline flight for Krakow, the very first time I went to Krakow. There were heavy middle-aged women, and there were slender young women, and none of them looked like models. They looked like ordinary people. The most startling thing about Poles--for me, anyway--is that they are all--and by all I mean 99.9%--white.
Generally speaking, and I do mean generally, young Polish women are slim, and middle-aged women are either slim or tending towards stout. There are different gradations of slim and stout, but I haven't seen Polish women with skeletal arms, nor have I seen Polish women who are obese. As for supernatural beauty, I have seen only two Polish women in Poland who I thought looked like supermodels. One was a waitress at Wedel, and one was on a rapid train to Warsaw.
Also generally speaking, women in Poland are much more feminine compared to the men than the average Edinburgh girl seems to be, but this has as much to do with the men as it does with the women. Let's just say that the Polish bar for manliness is rather high. Sure, Polish girls (unlike Scottish girls) are reluctant to get dead drunk in public, but Polish men can drink whole bottles of vodka
(Do NOT try that at home!)
One of my Polish friends says it is very important for Polish women to know how to drive because they must pick up their drunken husbands from wherever they call and bring them home in safety. I just fell in love with her practical attitude and cheerful assumption that all Polish men drink more than the legal driving limit on a regular basis.
Quite apart from the drinking, Polish men show an interest in women rather more marked than that of British men, for example. This may be because Polish women-in-general are polite to Polish men-in-general, very accepting and caring and bringing them cold drinks, etc. It's a theory. But I think it is also because Polish society expects men to look at women instead of shrieking in horror at the "male gaze." Men in Poland sometimes look markedly and meaningfully at me, which I find absurd but highly flattering. So far, however, none have attempted any gallantry, which is just as well. My 20 something compatriot M was hit on at some church or other when she was contemplating Baroque grandeur. Having grown up Canadian, albeit Polish-Canadian, in cold Toronto, she was dumbfounded.
I'll tell you what I think it is, and this is not such an original thought, for I have heard and seen it elsewhere. The northern hemisphere as we know now it (plus Australia and New Zealand) was born bloodily from the Second World War. Whereas it split North American men and women, for the men had to go to hell and the women didn't, it brought European men and women closer together. My Canadian grandfather had a horrible war--not that he talked about it much, but I had a look at where his regiment went--and my grandmother spent it selling hats at Simpson's department store and playing cards with her mother and sister. But European women--French, German, Polish--had wars just as bad as the surviving men did, if not worse, and so there was not quite so much resentment, buried or otherwise, when the men came home.
And when I think about it, it does seems rather unfair that the narrative of "men coming home" in the UK, Canada and the USA is all about how the women, having taken up the men's jobs, didn't want to give them back to the men when the men, maimed one way or another, came home. Oh shock horror, the women had give the jobs back, sulk, sulk. "We took care of our men," said a German Catholic lecturer sternly to one of my friends. "We healed them."
Am I off topic? I'm not so sure. The solidarity of Poles (against outside oppression, anyway) may explain why Polish men abroad (surrounded by foreigners) go on about how beautiful Polish women are, and the post-war rift between Anglosphere men and women might explain why American men trash American women all the time. A hundred years ago, American men would have said loyally that American women are the best, loyal and true.
Because we all love lists, I will now list ways I think we can be more like Polish women, if that is what we want to do:
1. We can all police younger women and shout at them when they eat too many doughnuts. If accused of "fat-shaming", we can pretend we are really worried about diabetes.
2. We can eat meat, cheese and raw vegetables with one slice of very good bread for breakfast, eat a big lunch beginning with soup, and eat meat, cheese and raw vegetables for supper with another slice of the very good bread. No dessert. Desserts are only for important occasions. Okay, maybe an apple.
3. We can be unfailingly polite, friendly and yet formal to men in public.
4. We can refrain from cursing and getting drunk.
5. We can look sad and helpless when something is heavy in the expectation that some man will notice and help us. In the Anglosphere we may be standing there looking sad and helpless for a good long time, but it will be good practise for travels in continental Europe.
6. We can also refrain from fighting with men when they bait us. One of my Polish friend says that when men try to make her mad, she just laughs--"Ah ha ha!"--and inwardly despises them.
7. We can agree when people complain about something and add our own complaint. If someone says the government is a gang of crooks, you can agreeably say they all deserve to be whipped in the public square. If someone says the weather is terrible, you can agree that at this rate we will all begin growing webs between our toes.
8. We can read up on traditional, herbal or New Age remedies for various health problems and discuss them endlessly with our friends. When men around admit to illness, we can listen eagerly to their symptoms and promise them healing drinks made from mashed up lemons, honey, ginger, marjoram, beetroot, etc., etc. I know a woman who allegedly kept a terminally ill relation alive with beetroot juice. "Disgusting," said my Polish informant, wrinkling his nose.
9. Whenever someone looks hot, we can offer to bring them a glass of water. Apparently little Polish girls in Edinburgh bring little Polish boys cups of water whenever they look hot; the schoolteacher who told me this has done her feminist best to break them of this habit. "Is that not interfering with their cultural norms?" I asked a tad coldly. I'd bet the grocery money she wouldn't say boo to a hijab.
10. We can look forward to spoiling our grandsons while driving our granddaughters completely insane.
UPDATE: I looked up "How much vodka can kill you" on the internet, and indeed many people are interested in this question. Personally, I love vodka--good vodka, not supermarket swill-- and drink it neat. But three shots over the course of a long and heavy lunch is what I can drink without being drunk. I shall now amuse myself by seeing how much Polish men on the internet say is their limit.
Update 2: The sad story of Anna, British teenager, brought to you by the NHS. I bet that wasn't Chopin she was drinking. Ew, gross. The possibilities have just occurred to me. I once tried to drink Smirnoff neat. It was then that I realized why the Screwdriver cocktail was invented: the orange juice kills the taste of nasty horrible cheap domestic vodka
Update 3: Here's Vice on the topic. Binge drinking is more likely to kill you if you haven't built up tolerance. Men in vodka cultures have very likely been building up tolerance since adolescence.
Update 4: How sad is it that I start off thinking about the frequency of beautiful women in Poland and end up thinking about vodka?
Update 5: This is hilarious. I think the advice is just for men, though. I have an English friend who says that the one big difference between mass British drunkenness in his youth and now in his old age is that now British women get off-their-faces drunk, too. What Anglosphere girls have to understand is that women in continental Europe don't. They just don't, and if you do, everyone will look at you like you were the one who poured raw sewage into the local stream.