Halina Leszczynska with friends

Halina Leszczynska with friends
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This picture was taken in the 1930s, in Kraszew. This is a little village, near Wisniowa Gora, southeast of Lodz, we used to go there for the holidays. This is a picture of my daughter, Halina Leszczynska (nee Birencwajg), and two other children - but I don?t remember their names now. I have this picture from my friend Rajzel, she sent the photo to me from Sao Paulo, Brazil, in the 1970s. My daughter, Halina , was born in 1929. There was such joy when she was born. I pampered her, spoiled her. I had great problems, she had this rash on her face. The doctor came and said that I should have a mask made of gauze and put some petroleum jelly on it, and you couldn't get it then. That's how it was. There was no stroller, just a large kerchief and that's how I carried her out for walks. And later they invented strollers and my husband's sister Roza bought me one in Sosnowiec. When my baby was four months old, my husband decided I should stop working. He would come home from work very late and he would always bring a piece of cheesecake, make tea and I had to eat and drink that, so I'd have milk for the baby. My daughter started going to school in the mid 1930s. My husband wanted Halinka to go to a Jewish school. That's why she can speak Yiddish, because my husband and I spoke Yiddish to each other, but Polish to her. Two times a year we'd go to her grandma in Sosnowiec. For the holidays. I'd always go for Easter, they'd have seder, there was matzah. They'd pray and pray, everything was told about how it was in Egypt, how they were thrown out, how long it all took, until the children fell asleep. .

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Interviewee: Gustawa Birencwajg
Warsaw, Poland


Halina Leszczynska
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