Anna Eva Gaspar and the gymnastics team

Anna Eva Gaspar and the gymnastics team

This is a picture made in 1934-1935. This is a group of gymnasts, with two coaches, but I don't remember their names. I'm first from left. These were private gymnastics lessons, the gym was fitted up at a house, quite far from our place. There were all kinds off apparatuses there, commencing with wall-bars. On the floor there were some signs made with lime, and we played handball there. This picture was taken there. I used to go there twice a week, in the afternoon, because I was at school in the morning. The gymnastics class was only for girls, and some coaches supervised us. In the picture you can see my two cousins who were studying in Nagyvarad. I'm on the left, right at the end, Agi is beside me, in the back, and on the edge that's Evi.

We were all Jewish girls in this picture, and except for me and my cousins none of them came home. Agi and Evi survived the Holocaust. They have been liberated by the Americans, I don't know where, but they worked in a factory somewhere. Evi walked from one barrack to another, and there were still some SS officers, Germans in the camp, and they started shooting, but mostly into the air, just to scare them, but they accidentally shot Evi in the face. She had a scar there and she even received compensations for it. They have been taken to Sweden, and from there Agi went to England and Evi to America. They died there, Agi three years ago, but I don't about Evi, because I wrote her a letter last year, for her birthday, on 6th June , but I got no answer. She has three daughters, he was the last one who let me know he's alive two years ago. He used to write me a postcard, but now I got no answer, and they don't know Hungarian and Romanian, only English. They were unable to write me. And thus we stopped keeping in touch.

Now back to the gymnastics classes, it was a very pleasant way to spend time. I liked very much going there, and we started each class by singing, because Bozsi, Boske [Erzsebet], she is next to Evi here, was very good at playing the piano, so he played and we sang. She was playing beautifully Chopin, Beethowen sonatas, and we had some fun. The piano was there because we were also studying rhytmics. And we also did running and apparatus work.

Back then, while I was a pupil, in the public schools only 6% of a form were allowed to be Jews, that is one child, who was the best student of the class she came from. Evi was the only Jew in the Oltea Doamna, she represented the Jewry in the public schools. She graduated there, then she went to Budapest to the Notre Dame de Sion university. She was an extremely bright, intelligent girl. She wasn't really interested in anything beside books. I'm surprised she even got married. Agi wasn't such a good student, she attended evening classes, like me. The number of Jews wasn't limited for evening classes, and this was supported by the Jewish high school. And the Jewish Community. So there was only one Jew allowed in any public school or full classes, and if you had money, you could attend evening classes. The diploma you got was recognized and had an official seal on it. Unfortunately I lost mine, but I never bothered with replacing it.

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