Year when photo was taken:1945Country name at time of photo:Czechoslovakia, 1945-1989Country name today:Czech Republic
This is me after the war, in 1945. Upon my return I initially lived with Uncle Josef Korbel, who had an apartment on Hradcanske Namesti. But very soon he left for Belgrade as an ambassador, and I stayed with my grandmother's sister-in-law, who I'd never met up till then. She was an old lady, over 80. Those that were of age were lucky, they got an apartment. Those that weren't were out of luck. Some of my classmates went into foster homes, some even into children's homes. It was quite cruel for those that didn't have anyone. Never in my life have I had it so bad as here after the war. My aunt on my father's side, Uncle Josef's wife, returned and took me in with her from that old lady, she even got her old apartment back. But she also had a very small pension, so it really was quite rough. Besides this, we didn't have anything at all to heat with, because coal was rationed, and the ration was somehow sized according to how much was used up. It was simply horrible. The first winter was in general terrible. I was still dressed for the weather in England, I didn't have warm boots, I didn't have a winter coat, I didn't have anything. Luckily my aunt, who'd remained in England, knew a lot of people here that had children and I taught them English or babysat them. So I made the rounds to these families, I actually got fed there plus they paid me.