Although the temperature has not formally dipped below zero, the wind-chill factor generated by winds gusting up to 70kmh (45mph) made it feel very cold today. Worse, the unprepared roads and pavements were turned into skating rinks as the meltwater froze and turned to black ice.
The winds are the tail-end of Orkan Ksawery (Hurricane Xaver) which brought mayhem across north-west Europe.
Below: half past six this evening, and a blizzard going on; snow on the roof of the Novotel lobby being blasted around Rondo Dmowskiego. Traffic northbound along ul. Marszałkowska at a standstill as snow ploughs clear the roundabout.
Below: ul. Karczunkowska. Another winter without pavements; up to one's ankles in snow or mud. Time to crank up the campaign - this time using the 19115 phone line and website. Neighbours! Join me and bombard the service with e-mails and phone-calls for something to be done about this situation.
Below: Karczunkowska looking east. Note lack of street lighting (temporary I hope) and the pedestrian's dilemma: walk on the roadway (smooth asphalt, might get hit by a car) or walk by the side of the road (will get wet in puddles, might trip over uneven surface). And with pram or in a wheelchair? This is totally unacceptable.
This is it then - winter proper has set in. For the weekend at least. On Monday, it will all melt as the temperature is forecast to rise above zero, and the snow will turn to rain.
This time last year:
The 2012 Transparency International results (Poland advances again)