Photo taken in:KrivoklatCountry name at time of photo:Czechoslovakia, 1918-1938Country name today:Czech Republic
This photograph was taken on one outing my father was on with my older brother Honza [Jan] in the 1920s. Back then I may not even have been born yet. The third figure in the photo is a colleague of my father's from work, and the castle in the background behind them is the famous Czech royal castle, Krivoklat. Our father devoted himself very nicely to us, his sons. Even though I think that Honza enjoyed him more, he was born earlier, and the 1920s were definitely a calmer time, more suitable for childhood, than the 1930s. It was no longer possible to go on similar outings with me, the political atmosphere didn't allow it. It's hard to say what my father was really like. I experienced him under normal conditions only when I was very small. Then the war came, and Terezin. When my father left on the transport to Terezin, I was a little over 13. I remember how once he came home from a business trip, and I then laid on his stomach and along with him repeated ?Käsbrot, Käsbrot? [?Slice of bread with cheese?]. I think that I was almost never out on a proper outing with my parents. I was either too small, or later, during the occupation, we weren't allowed into the forest and outside of Prague. But I do remember one outing very well. At that time we were still allowed into the forest, so our whole family was there. My father didn't bring any games with him, but for lunch we had two hard-boiled eggs, one with a light-colored shell and the other with a dark one. So my father took a napkin, drew a board on it like for checkers or chess, broke pieces off the eggshells for figures, and we played checkers. One more outing has stuck in my mind, this one was just me, my father and my brother. I might have been around nine, because at the age of ten I was already not allowed into the forest, and when I was eleven I went to Terezin. On this outing I wanted to pick some dandelions or something like that for my mother. My father and brother were telling me that the flowers would wilt, for me to throw them away, why bring my mother wilted flowers. I didn't listen to them and brought them to my mother anyways. She was delighted, because she knew I'd done it of my own accord; she put them in water and the flowers revived. Suddenly she had a fresh bunch of flowers at home. It's possible that at that time Jews weren't allowed to buy them. Actually, we weren't allowed to do anything, absolutely nothing. Just drink water, breathe and eat food from a small ration.