Przemysl is on the very eastern edge of Poland, a few miles from the border with Ukraine. It's a fairly small town, but it is mentioned in James Michener's book, Poland:
"Look at this," she said petulantly, pointing to Przemysl. "How in the world do you pronounce it?"
"Quite simple," he said, repeating it several times. "Shemish."
"Now wait! You can't tell me that with all those letters, it comes out Shemish."
"It does. You can hear for yourself. Shemish."
"What happens to the P at the beginning and the L at the end?"
"In strict accuracy, it ought to be P'shemish'l, and if you listen with extra attention, you may hear the muffled P and the final L. But mostly we just say Shemish." He broke into laughter, and Marjorie thought he was ridiculing her. Not at all: "I was remembering how much trouble it gives the Austrian officers who speak only German. They go home to their families and announce proudly, 'I've been appointed lieutenant commander of our big base at Przemysl,' and however he pronounces it that first time becomes the accepted name in that man's family. Shemish he never says." He laughed again. "How would you say it, Marjo?"
"Per-zem-y-sil," she said firmly, "just as God intended it to be pronounced."
"Never try to reason things out in Poland," he said reassuringly. "Just accept it as Shemish," but she resolved to avoid the word whenever possible.
Our group journeyed to Poland to visit a Methodist Church in the town of Przemysl. to help with a church building project. Since Poland is 95% Catholic, we Protestants were definitely a "minority" group.
Most of our group stayed in the homes of church members, while I had a room at the Pod Bialy Orzem, where I realized that my attempts to learn some Polish before the trip were less than entirely successful. We got to try a variety of Polish food and drink (although, as a church group, we had to pass on the vodka, at least until we were on our way home...)
Among the highlights of the week were the kielbasa roast and a train ride which passed through Ukraine. Group members brought back a variety of souvenirs, including crystal, wood eggs, and, in my case, music - CDs and tapes of Polish rock and punk bands. And, of course, lots of memories!
Read and enjoy!