This is a photo of my mother, Johanna Schischa [nee Friedmann], taken in Vienna.
My mother was born in Prein on 19th May 1885. She was affectionately called Handschi. My mother went to primary school in Prein but had no further education.
There was a ball at Purim in Neunkirchen, my mother went to, and she met my father, Wilhelm Schischa, there. I don't know when that happened. In any case, my father traveled by cart to my grandmother and asked for my mother's hand. That was rather unusual because people mostly got married through shadkhanim back then. It seems that my grandmother gave them her consent because my parents got married in 1908. So my parent's marriage was one of love, which, apparently, was an exception to the rule back then.
I was born on 13th March 1927 in Rudolfinerhaus in Vienna's 19th district. My mother was already 42 years old when she got pregnant with me and knew that there may be difficulties because they had discovered a tumor during pregnancy examinations. They operated on her and removed the tumor. Nonetheless it could have been a difficult delivery, and that's why my mother went to hospital in Vienna.
We owned a house with a garden in Wiener Neustadt, which was quite luxurious for the standards back then. My mother was a housewife, and we also had a maid.
Jewish traditions were very important to my mother. Every Friday on Sabbath kiddush was said over a glass of wine, candles were lit, and we had barkhes. There was always a napkin folded over barkhes. We usually had cold food in the evening, but on Friday evenings we had diced carp as a starter and goose or chicken as a main dish. I remember that the geese were stuffed to become very fat and get a big liver. We used goose fat for cooking because we didn't eat any pork dishes.
My parents were deported from Vienna to Opole ghetto on 26th February 1941 and murdered in either Belzec or Sobibor concentration camp in 1942.