CSA 2016, Day Three. Another
fabulous day -- a visit to the Belvedere Museum in Vienna! As breathtaking as
it is, however it did not make my best part of this seminar day. Completely
unexpectedly, the highlight of the day turned out to be a story I was told by
Robert Rosner, a 92 year old Holocaust survivor from Vienna. It's a story of
how his wife survived the Holocaust in Austria.
Back in 1937 a girl of 14, Robert’s
wife to be, together with her mum go to visit some relatives in Sweden. Both
the mum and her daughter on one occasion during their short stay put on their
Austrian traditional dresses. They attract the attention of a local
photographer, get introduced and he takes a photo of them. After coming back
home to Vienna, they start correspondence by mail.
As after the Anschluss many
Jews try to emigrate out of Austria, the mum in all her despair contacts the
photographer to ask for help. He saves the girl's life by taking her through
the Kindertrasport to England.
With a smile of a happy man
on his face, Robert finishes his story: "You know, I've been a very lucky
man. If it hadn't been for the Austrian traditional dress, I wouldn't have
married my beautiful wife".