Sophie and Avram Pinkas

This photo of my brother Avram Pinkas and me was taken in Skopje in 1933 when we were visiting my grandmother and my grandfather. We loved going there during our vacations. We spent our vacations there maybe not every year, but every other year together with my mother's big family - my grandmother Sarah Beraha and my grandfather David Beraha, my uncles, cousins etc. All married brothers of my mother had two children each. We were the same age and played together. My brother, Avram Leon Pinkas, is three years younger than me. We got along very well, and played together when we were little. We played 'cops and robbers' and 'chilik'. I must have had dolls too, but I preferred playing with the boys outside. For example, we used to jump over a rope. We also had a horizontal bar in the yard and we tried to hang down from it for as long as we could. Our parents talked to us in Bulgarian and between them they used Bulgarian and Ladino, because my grandparents talked in Ladino. Thanks to the conversations with our grandparents we learned Ladino too. We had a piano at home and my mother insisted that I learn to play it. I started taking lessons and my brother did so too. I was more eager than him, but I wasn't very gifted. My brother didn't want to do it at all: he was always looking at the clock on the piano, counting the hours. My mother was very persevering and stayed beside us during our lessons, listening to our teacher. Although they bought the piano for us, my mother was also eager to learn something. She listened to our teacher and later reproduced it by herself.