With the neighbors

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This is a photo of our very dear neighbors and friends Yair and Mari Mizrahi. You can see my husband Isak Franko standing at the back on the left, Yair Mizrahi is standing beside him on the right. I am standing in front of my husband and Mari Mizrahi is standing beside me on the right. In front of us, sitting down are my son Tovi on the left and my daughter Feride on the right.

We had neighbors who were like siblings. We felt more close to our neighbors than our siblings. The couple, Yair and Mari Mizrahi, were such neighbors. They had only one child, whose name was Lina Mizrahi. She was the young Lina, and I was the older one when we talked among ourselves.

The Mizrahi family was a quiet family. We, on the other hand, were crowded. Young Lina would always come over to our house. She would also get my father to do her homework as I did during my childhood years. We would dine together during the Jewish festivals, and go out together during the Muslim festivals.

My husband first invited the Mizrahi family out when he bought his car. Owning a car was a privilege then. The ones who bought a car would invite the family members out one by one. There was also an excitement in our family when Lina Mizrahi got married. After all, we were from the same apartment. Lina Mizrahi married a lawyer, named Salamon Kaneti.

Yair and Mari Mizrahi, who were left alone in the house, came over to us right after the day she got married. They started crying and said " No teniya un bokado para darle, ke la enbiyi de kaza ?" ["Why did we have to send her away? Didn't we have a piece of bread to feed her with?" ] We calmed them down with a smile. Salamon Kaneti, who was a calm, quiet man later progressed in his career very much. He first became an associate professor and then a professor. Mari Mizrahi who was very proud of her son-in-law, would start her sentences by saying "mi yerno el avokato" ["my son-in-law the lawyer"] or "mi yerno el profesor" ["my son-in-law the professor]. My mother and I would always smile very much at these comments because she didn't have any other son-in-laws. Her only son-in-law was a lawyer and a professor. When Lina and I meet, we still hug each other lovingly.

Interview details

Interviewee: Lina Franko
Feride Petilon
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Istanbul, Turkey


Isak Franko
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The Ottoman Empire
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Lina Franko
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