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J195 - Thursday, April 29: Drogoszewo - Szczuczyn

74.17km  – 9H57’
Altitude : 123m
This morning there is no way we can escape the National 61, which does not lend itself to running, due to narrow and soft shoulders.
At Km27, Jacek and Serge arrive at our only scheduled stop today in Lomza, where the middle school is a UNESCO affiliate, and which was visited last Monday by the students from the Jean-Renoir school, (also a UNESCO affiliate).  So almost the entire school, which has a sports field, is waiting for us.  There is an honor guard for our runners, then the director and teachers give Serge a book on the city. After the book signing and questions from journalists who were invited to attend, it is time to go and a few students, with police escort, run with Jacek and Serge to the edge of town.  We have decided to leave the National 61 to take a route which is longer but less busy and doesn’t have trucks that shave our bottoms.
In the afternoon, some ten runners from the Maratonka Club of Grajewo join us.  This club has some 40 runners and is organizing the “Wolves Race” on May 8.
During a refueling in Lawsk, we stop opposite a church and thanks to the loud speaker at the entrance we can hear the service taking place inside.  This gives me the opportunity of talking about religion with Paulina.  We have noticed that that there are lots of churches, like at home, but contrary to France, they are filled on Sunday, to the point of not being able to hold everyone, hence the loud speakers on the outside.  The Poles are practicing Catholics and even young people go to mass on Sunday.  The Poles are proud to have had a Pope; John-Paul II, his real name was Karol Wojtyla, became the first non-Italian Pope since the 16th century.  This Pope traveled the world over to promote peace among nations.
This evening we are housed in a dormitory of the technical high school in Wiezbowo.  This hospitality, which includes a huge and delicious meal, was organized by the Maratonka Club.  We find in Poland, as in many Eastern countries, soup that is delicious and filling and just the sight and smell of it has us licking our lips.
There are 3 or 4 drops of rain, a bit of wind, some bright patches: it is real spring weather.
Serge is tired and wants to go to bed early.  Night falls at 8:30 pm so he falls asleep while it is still light.  In Poland the time is the same as in France but since we are further east, the sun rises and falls earlier than in France.

Town : Szczuczyn

GPS : N 53.33’05.9° E 022.18’17.4°