Day 116. Czech Republic, Prague. Чехия: Прага

A woman with a big umbrella

My great-grandfather's cousin Rachel Wolfson (Rolya as she was called in the family) was sent to the Minsk ghetto in June, 1941 - soon after the German invasion of the Soviet Union. She spent two horrible years there witnessing the deaths of her friends and relatives including her aunt (my great-grandfather's mother). The Nazis didn't persecute the inmates with medical professions though fearing the outbreak of epidemics in the ghetto. Rolya was a doctor (a psychiatrist).
One day it was pouring rain in Minsk. She took an umbrella and started walking towards the city. Usually that road was under a permanent Nazi surveillance but that day the weather was so bad that even the guards stayed in. She walked, left the ghetto behind and arrived at some small village where people helped her get to the partisan squads in the woods.
Rachel told this story to my grandfather when she came to Moscow in June, 1944 (Minsk had already been liberated by that time).
Somehow this heavy night rain in Prague reminded me of her. Of that little woman with a big umbrella, walking out of hell one day. So simple but still unimaginable.


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