Zoya Shapochnik and her mother Pesya Shapochnik

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This is me and my mother Pesya Shapochnik. The picture was taken in Kishinev in 1939 during a stroll.

I was born on 19th September 1934. I was named Zoya after my distant relative, whose Jewish name was Zlata. I was born in Kishinev and had spent the first years of my life in the house of my maternal grandparents: Gersh and Dvoira Treiger. I remember my early childhood: the old low house, a drawing room with a big round table and laced cloth on it in the center of the room, my grandmother in a dressy white kerchief lighting the candles, chest of drawers, which caught my attention. I was less than two years old, but I remember it as if it was yesterday. Such bright pictures are still in my heart. On Sabbath Uncle Lazar, his wife and children, who were older than me, came over to see us. I remember a beautiful park, where my mother liked taking me for a stroll. That park, named after Pushkin, is still there. We were rather poor as my father didn't make that much money in Bucharest. Part of his salary was to pay for the apartment and food. He sent my mother the remaining money. Sometimes my mother bought me scrumptious ice-cream or sweets in the park. Often there wasn't enough money for these dainty things.

I spent almost all the time with my mother. My father was always tied up at work .He had various duties: he was a superintendent, foreman, cashier and accountant. He got money from Bucharest and paid off wages to the workers. My mother was scared that he could be robbed and killed as everybody knew that he was carrying large amounts of money. On weekends my father took us for a walk. I remember the park along the firth. The wind band played there. The King of Romania came for the opening ceremony of the sanatorium. My parents and I were on the platform waiting for the train to come. We met the King with flowers and then all of us went to the feast. It was held in the only restaurant in town. The King, clad in a white suit, was at the head of the table. My parents and I weren't far from him.

Interview details

Interviewee: Zoya Shapochnik
Kishinev, Moldova


Zoya Shapochnik
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Other Person

Pesya Shapochnik
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Russia pre 1917
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after WW II
before WW II:
Pharmacist, asst. secretary, seamstress, cashier
after WW II:
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