Lea Merenyi with her mother, brother and sister

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This is my mother Clairette Schuller with us, her three children. From left to right: my mother, my sister Zsuzsa, I, my brother Istvan and the lady who took us on walks. The photo was taken in Hanover in 1928. We didn't have money to employ a 'Fräulein', but there was a lady who took us for a walk every morning. Life in Hanover was quite cloudless, because I was a child there, I had my friends there, I went to school there. My mother packed up the family every Sunday morning, equipped with a can of milk and coffee, a thermos and a ring cake, and there is this nice place in Hanover, a small forest, a little bit like the City Park, and there was a garden restaurant there. So she packed up the ring cake, and in the restaurant we ordered that good German watery coffee. They couldn't make a good coffee, but it didn't matter, it was good with the ring cake. Then we played until noon, and at noon we went home. The positive aspect of living in Hanover was that thanks to my grandparents we had no money worries. I inherited very many clothes from my grandmother, she liked to dress very much, she had enough money, and if she got bored of a dress I got it. In Hannover I had school-mates, friends, we celebrated the birthdays, we lived a completely normal civil life, and that time nobody made us feel that there was a problem. My mother didn't let us read newspapers. Now I think she obviously did it because people said nasty things about Jews at that time already. But this is just a guess. 'Politics is not for you'- my mother said. Politics wasn't a topic in our family at all. So we didn't even know what was about to happen.

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Lea Merenyi

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