----- Original Message -----
From: Sandy P. Klein
Sent: Sunday, October 20, 2002 2:22 PM
Subject: Vladimir Nabokov of Lolita fame says in one of his books that things that happen


Journey to Poland prefigured

FROM A DISTANCE by Carmen N. Pedrosa
The Philippine Star 10/19/2002

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Journey to Poland prefigured. The author Vladimir Nabokov of Lolita fame says in one of his books that things that happen to us and in our lives are always prefigured except that we are not aware of it. We can recall earlier events, memories that have a bearing or predispose us to later events and feeling. If what he says is true, then my journey to Poland on Monday was prefigured more than thirty years ago when I took a train from East Berlin to Moscow. Poland from a train window many years ago seemed then an endless forest of birch trees — a forbidding landscape of white trees and bitter cold. I will have an opportunity to recast that train window impression into what the Polish refer to as the real nature of their country – a kaleidoscope of many colors and fine scenery. It is the country of Walesa and Pope John Paul II and could be said to be the place that started the crack on the Iron Curtain. Now ! it is among a few Communist countries deemed qualified to join the European Union. How are its relations with the Philippines? Although it does not have an embassy here, its affairs are ably managed through the efficient honorary consulate under Fernando Lising, president and CEO of UPL in a building across Fort Santiago. For the moment Mr. Lising says there is little trade or relations between our two countries but there are promising areas of cooperation that could be developed – soft coal from them and thermal energy from us. The first is their expertise and on the second, we are second only to the US as a producer of thermal energy. But to develop more exchanges between the two countries needs political will says Mr. Lising. This may be more possible now with its entry into the European Union.

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