Izia Antipka and his family

Sitting from left to right: me, my wife Alina, son Ilia and standing, his wife Inna. This photo was taken in Kishinev in 2003. 

In 1954 our son Ilia was born. We named him after his maternal grandfather. Ilia studied well. He finished the electromechanical technical school and worked at a plant. He never mentioned to me if he ever faced everyday anti-Semitism. Our family benefited well from perestroika. My son managed to use his commercial talent. He started from little and now he owns a big casino. In 1998 Ilia married Inna, a Russian girl, who is much younger than him. In 2003 their son Gera, my grandson, was born. They live their own life. I have little in common with my daughter-in-law, but my son helps me a lot. 

My wife Alina, a holy person, a kind soul, with whom I lived a beautiful life, died in 2003. It’s hard for me to accept that she is not with me any longer. My sister, her husband and their daughter Inna moved to Israel in the early 1990s. My sister died in 2000. My wife and I visited Israel a few times. It’s a magical country created by people’s hands and hard work, but it’s full of sunshine and light. We liked everything there: the warm sea, nice people and delicious cuisine. It’s a paradox that I, a member of a Zionist organization in my youth and a supporter of the establishment of a Jewish state, have stayed here. I always wanted to move there, but at first my wife was against it, later my son didn’t want to go there and then I gave up the thought of it. What would I do there, a lonely old man, who doesn’t speak the language. 

When Moldova became independent, it established all conditions for the development of the Jewish nation. I wouldn’t state that there is no routine anti-Semitism and I’ve faced it every now and then, but we have our community, the Hesed, and it provides assistance to me as its client, the association of Jewish organizations. I’ve not become religious, but I often attend various events. I join my friends to celebrate holidays at the synagogue or in the Hesed, we share our memories and recipes of the Jewish cuisine: I know many from my mother.