This is a photograph from our wedding. My wife is on the left, her maiden name was Devora Faiestein, and I, Leizer Finchelstein, am on the right.
We married in 1949. It was a vey beautiful wedding, despite its being pretty simple, it was a traditional Jewish wedding, with hipe-kidise [Yiddish: the nuptial canopy]. The wedding party was organized in the courtyard of the house where my wife's sister lived, on Sfantul Teodor St., it was the month of August. Our mothers prepared the table. Not many people were invited, it was a family-only party, without music and fuss. We also have a chisibe [Yiddish: marriage certificate, Hebrew: ketubbah] that we keep to this day. In those days all weddings that were organized observed these customs. Before the wedding, the bride performed the ritual bath. Only then could you start living your life as a couple. We started in life from scratch. My wife didn't have a dowry chest. We worked in order to secure a minimum of comfort, and we did this without anyone's help. And I can say that I was educated in such a way so as to always look for a peaceful life together. In 56 years of marriage, I didn't raise my voice to my wife or had a fight with her. It's incredible, but it is true.
My wife's maiden name was Devora Faiestein. She too was born in Iasi, in January 1925. We met for the first time in our Jewish neighborhood, I fell in love with her and to this age, after 56 years of marriage, I'm still in love with her. When I come home and ring the doorbell, and she opens the door for me, it's as if a spotlight lights up the entire house. When I was going to work in the morning and by the time I returned home, I'd start missing her as I didn't see her all day long.
In 1951 I traveled to Sinaia through the intermediary of CFR with my wife on our first holiday together. It was a novelty for us. We had heard of Sinaia, Mamaia, Tataia [Ed. note: Tataia (fam. Romanian for "grandfather") is not an actual existing locality, but Mr. Finchelstein uses it as a play on words.] or other resorts that, in those days, we never thought of ever seeing. And I can say that my parents left to Israel without ever going to the mountains or at the seaside in Romania. They saw the sea when they left by boat to Israel. We went at the seaside through the trade union. And when I saw the sea for the first time, it was a miracle for me to behold this immensity about which I had learned this and that during primary school; but I had never seen it with my own eyes until then. And after that we started to go on holidays every year, and we always had a very good time.