A Letter – March 19, 1940

*translation of a letter sent to family members that had immigrated to the USA


March 19, 1940

Dear Uncles and Cousins,

We had hardly discovered your exact address and started a regular correspondence when our situation changed so totally that it is impossible to tell you about in a short letter.

We (my father and I) now live in Warschau, the capital of former Poland, where we are staying with a family.  My mother has stayed back in Lodz where she lives together with her family.  She will join us in Warschau whenever it becomes possible.

Overall, we are getting along alright, although our separation from mother is painful.  Our previous jobs have been taken from us and we are getting used to our situation.

We want to remain in regular contact with you, so send us letters to our new address as often as possible.  For the time being, we do not need money. If possible, send food packages by mail.

I send you the warmest greetings.  We are waiting for your answering letter.



Warsaw 1940 search: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Poland_(1939%E2%80%931945)

Lodz 1940 search: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%C5%81%C3%B3d%C5%BA_Ghetto


Swimming in a Spring

I was ready to tweet about swimming in a spring this afternoon.  I wanted to recommend that if ever you have a chance, do it.  Even after I had parked and changed, I found myself wanting to turn from the moderate size crowd and go back to my car.  The thing about most springs is that you have to walk downhill to get to them and uphill to get back to your car.  The areas to enter the water are always congested. Was it worth it? There is something about earth cooled water and the sandy floor of nature’s pools that is both relaxing and revitalizing.

What stopped me from making the tweet was that I started to think about the faces in that moderate crowd. I guess Berthold Gambrel was right, “Writing about an experience is a great way to capture what was most important about it.”

I started to think of the retired couple heading back to their car after a picnic, the little kids playing jokes on each other, the ladies in bikinis, the ladies in wet suits, the guy just sitting on a bench enjoying the atmosphere, the little kids in the shallow area that was the only part of the pool that had clearly been altered by park staff to make it safer for the kiddos, the mom in a tube float with her youngest sitting on the edge holding on to mom, the middle aged mixed race couple that were comfortable and relaxed with each other, the teenage mixed race couple with their new relationship tension and passion, the snorkel that was always moving around but never surfaced, the older gentleman climbing down the steps with fins and snorkel in hand, the different languages that echoed across the water, the group of kayaks coming back to shore after adventure on the other side of the swim area, the young lady stretching trying to find the right angle to capture the scene, the group of young men just hanging out and making plans for the weekend…

I was not there very long.  In fact, the middle aged man blowing up floats for his family in the parking lot when I arrived was just starting down to the pool as I went back to my car.  I was there for a quick cold water walk in the sand. I had no idea my brain was having a soak in all the warmth community can bring.

Be kind to each other. Be kind to yourself.

Go swimming in a spring.

Frisbee by the Spring

I did not take any photos today so this is an old photo of a similar area