Fela Baum and friends on the beach

Fela Baum and friends on the beach

This is a photograph of our friends on the sandy bank of the Biebrza river at Slowik, near Kielce. Sitting second from the left is Mosze Baum, my best friend and brother-in-law.

Fifth from the left is my wife Fela Baum, and second from the right is Andzia Baum, her elder sister. I took this photo. It could have been 1938.

As you do in the vacations, we still went swimming, we would go out of town to the summer resort of Bialogon, to Slowik, 7 km from Kielce, and we would swim in that river [the Biebrza].

There was calm in the city. No-one suspected, no-one talked of war. In Warsaw before the vacation it hadn't been tangible either. I spent most of my time with Fela. I rode a motorbike.

That motorbike belonged to my brother-in-law Obarzanski, this big, heavy motorbike. Obarzanski was the husband of Roza, my eldest sister.

On the last day of peace my wife, who was a girl of about 22 then, even cycled to Slowik to swim.

I met Fela [Mr. Gringras's partner, whom he refers to as his wife, although they never formally married] when she was 17, and I was 23, when I was at the Polytechnic.

I used to go visiting that friend of mine, Baum, Fela's brother. Well, and I got friendly with the family, somehow. Fela was still at gymnasium.

She was born in 1917, 20th September 1917. She went to Zimnowodzina's, the girls' school in Kielce. She left school, but she didn't matriculate. That's what I seem to remember.

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