Sholom Rondin with his wife Feiga

I, Rondin Sholom and my wife Feiga Rondina, nee Korol, on our wedding day in 1938 in Gomel.

I quit school in 1933 to go to work to help my grandparents. I finished the sixth form. I was 13 at the time when I began to work with my stepfather. I was an assistant at first. My stepfather paid me well for my work. I worked with him in Gomel for about half a year. I received 8 rubles per day plus accommodation and meals. It was a great salary for the time. I became a professional painter.
I turned 16 and understood that I had to go ahead when I met a man that changed my life. His last name was Rozin. He was a painter and worked in "al fresco" (Editor's note: water color painting on damp plaster). He made paintings on the walls and ceilings. He was the best professional in Gomel. I went to work with him. It was interesting work. In 1936 I worked in the crew of Rozin. We had much work in Gomel and got assignments in other towns.

My future wife Faina (Feiga by her passport), nee Korol, was born in 1921. My future wife was my schoolmate. We had common friends. We enjoyed going to dance in the park in the evening. We went dancing at weekends, as on weekdays I was too tired to go. I also liked cinema and theater. We went to the Jewish theater in Gomel. I don't quite remember what we saw, but it must have been Jewish classic. Most of my friends were Jewish and we spoke and understood Yiddish. I was planning to marry a Jewish woman.

We got married in 1938. Regretfully, my grandmother Khashe Rondina didn't live to see me married. She died of a heart disease in 1937. When we got married I was 19 and she was 17 years old. She was under age and her parents gave their written consent to our marriage. They had no objections, as I had a stable profession and could provide for the family. We had a civil ceremony and then a wedding dinner party arranged by my wife's parents. My mother and her husband also came to the party. We could have had a religious wedding, but my wife and I were raised atheists by the Soviet power.

I moved to my wife's family. They lived in a house located not far from my grandparents' house. I refurbished the room that they gave us. My wife's father Usyel Korol was a tailor. Her mother was a housewife. My wife's parents were religious people, but their children grew up as atheists. Their parents followed the kashrut until the end of their life. They prayed every day and often went to the synagogue.

My wife's family was good to me. My mother and her husband also liked my wife. My mother called her "My daughter". We spoke Yiddish in the family. Faina worked as a cashier in the grocery shop, after finishing school. Later I became leader of a crew at work.