Anna Dremlug with her doll


This photo was taken in 1920s, I don’t remember where exactly: in Bologoye or in Vishniy Volochek. Here you see me and my favorite doll.

I, just like my father, was born in Lipsk village, not far from Begoml in Borisov uezd, this is Belarus.

Then mother came back to Staraya Russa, and in the middle of 1920s we moved to Valdasi [small town in Novgorod district, in 300 kilometers to West from Petersburg]. I don't remember any of Valdasi life.

The only thing I remember is: when Sophia, my middle sister, she is three years younger than I am, was born, we went to the hospital, I remember black hat of aunt Bertha and that it was raining.

Bertha, sister of my mother, lived in Valdasi together with her husband, the communist. She was a housewife then, I think.

In 1930 we moved to Bologoye. We lived there in an ordinary wooden house with two levels. The owner, Naum Abramovitch, lived on the second floor, and we rented one of the apartments on the first floor.

We lived in that house till the Great Patriotic War [5] had begun. And even later, in 1948, after Dad came back from the front, parents bought quarter of that building.

There was a small front garden in front of the house. In generally Bologoye was a green town, with its own park and public garden.

In the childhood, when I went to Staraya Russa to see my grandmother Zlata, she made me to pray before the breakfast, and I refused:

- Granny, I'm not an old woman, I won't pray.
- So, I won't give you cacao.
- I don't need any…
I was a very little girl, I was five. And my grandmother prayed.

I also remember that once they sent me to grandmother after I've got typhus. Parents lived very poorly, and at grandmothers in Vyshniy Volochek [small town in 350 kilometers to the North from Moscow] it was a bit easier.

So we went for a walk and noticed the lying doll with no head in the ditch. We took the body, washed it, bought the head and made a real doll - my first real big doll ever!

I don't remember Volochek itself because I was very little, I was only six, but I remember that Granny liked me more than all other grandchildren.

When she came to visit, she always asked mother to let me go with her. She liked tasty things herself, that's why she always put some sweets or chocolates under my pillow.

I slept in her room, and they had three rooms, and a hall, and a kitchen. There was a garden and a small courtyard. The building was in the center of the town. It was a two-staged wooden house, and Semen rented the second floor.

He lived there together with his wife Esphir and his mother, my Granny. I liked to go there because I liked grandmother and also because they lived much better than my own parents.



Anna Dremlug