On memories and friendships
Memory is complexly layered. Having returned home after nearly two weeks of intensive study tour travel, it goes without saying that we went to discover something important about a dark era of the past. We accomplished that, I think, but the memories we carry with us are not only about the historical events, but about the people we met along the way. We took Fred Fred Spiegel and Ernest Paul into our hearts, not only as historical witnesses, as survivors, but also as wonderful traveling companions.
Marian Golobiowski, a rescuer who saved a life, was not only heroic, we found; like his daughter Moknika and his son-in-law, he is also a bright and vibrant mensch, so full of optimism and zest for life.
Our guides were full of knowledge, but mixed with wit and warmth; how can we forget Christoph in Berlin, Matthias at Ravensbrück, Robert and Ewa in Poland, and others. Our tour manager from Dresden to Warsaw, Adam, stands in a class by himself. More a big brother than anything else, he was able to solve our problems, answer our questions, and simply to chat about whatever seemed important at the time.
When we left, we barely knew each other. Now we have forged friendships that will last years, perhaps a lifetime.