Day 7: A Lazy Sunday
Well, this blessed Sunday morning finds me up at 6:00 am. I, of course, busy Joe and get ready for breakfast. This morning we have a conversation with Walter. He is the 82 year old man who is hard of hearing and pretty close to totally blind. His dog is Heidi. As we eat our eggs, grits, bacon, wheat toast with sugar free jelly, he tells about living in Poland when he was 16 and hearing the Nazi troops pounding into the village in which he has lived his whole life with his mother and father, brothers and sisters. The tanks and marching men could be heard 10 minutes before they arrived. As they entered the village, the people began to scramble. Guards grabbed children from their mothers screaming. Women were slapped hard to the ground with blood trickling from their lips and their deep sobs welling from their throats. Walter says I am not a Jew, but on that day it made no difference. I was drug into the trucks like cattle. I managed to hold on to my youngest brother, but the other and my father disappeared into other trucks. I caught a glimpse of my mother and sisters being pushed into a truck with the other women. I thought at least they are together for whatever awaits us. My brother and I were sent to a work camp where we broke rocks every day with chains on our feet. One day a Nazi soldier grabbed my brother and I forcing us to follow him. I thought maybe we would get an easier job. My brother who was 10 was sickly and could not do much work. How wrong could I be? We would have been glad to break all the rocks in one day than do the job we had to do that day. The soldiers had tired of doing this sick job so they passed it on to us. We spent the day dragging out the bodies of Jews of all ages with their star of David sewn on their sleeves. We dragged out men, women, children, and even infants and threw them in a ditch about a 100 yards away. I could hardly walk much less drag as I sobbed for these dead. If I took to long, I felt a rifle butt hard in my back. I looked once at my little brother as he carried the bodies of two infants. I never looked again because I could not stand the sight I saw in his glassy eyes. What was almost impossible for me to do had been impossible for him. I was almost thankful when he died six months after we arrived. Some now say there was never a holocaust. I know there was. I lived it, not as a Jew, but a burier of their dead. When the war was over, and we were rescued by American soldiers, I tried to find my family. I succeeded in finding only one brother. Our home had been destroyed. We tried to dig through the rubble and find what we could as mementos. I found my motherâ€™s apron that she wore as she fixed our meals and sang or hummed her melodies. I still have that apron. Now I say again what I said before, I am American from Poland years ago, but I am American.
Well, as you can see, nothing the rest of the day could have beat that. We finished our meals and headed to feed our dogs. After that a few of us who are allowed to go on short walks with our dogs without dogs gathered together and did obedience in the courtyard. We did a few doggie pushups, stay with long leash. We even moved around our dogs. They were good. They watched us all around, but did not move. Then we went on the short route. It was very fun. Joe caught all the cabs and cracks. We made it to the gazebo and turned around. We actually made it back safely.
It stormed a while after lunch. I went to my room and watched a movie and napped on the floor with Joe.
After supper, I got on live with Scott and talked with him. I also talked to Hartley as she sat in front of the TV. Scott said she sat up and listened intently.
We played a couple of Xbox games and then Joe and I retired to our bedroom. I showered and then laid on the floor and finished our movie from earlier. At 10:00, I hugged Joe good night and turned out the light. I will be ready for the day tomorrow. See you there, too. I hope.