I was once visited my dear friend in USA, as we were walking towards the parking lot after a superb evening playing mini golf where apparently I had no clue how to play, as I was talking to him, he told me he use to watch lots of documentaries on the Holocaust. If it was someone else mentioning it, I would have pretended to know about it and would have added to the conversation “hum…hum.. ok.” But this friend is my childhood buddy, we have practically grown up together, we never judge each so I ask him, “Saggi what is The Holocaust?” He patiently answers, ” its the time during the second world war, when Hitler decided to kill all the jews.” I tell him “oh I know that but I don’t know it is called the Holocaust.” In my heart I felt so ashamed, I felt so ignorant and selfish, I was so absorbed in my own world, not right.
When I was in school our teachers insisted we should read “Annie Frank, the diary of a young girl”( one of the best documented book on world war 2), every year teachers would insist and I would never read, I was too occupied is discussing meaningless crushes with friends or day dreaming about having a boyfriend, going to college…all unimportant stuff… absolutely waste of time.
Few months ago I had decided to read quality stuff mostly literature (yeah!finally growing up). So when we had visited a nearby book store on the biography/ autobiography section , my eye caught the sight of Annie Frank, it was as if the book was calling me, instantly I picked it up.
After putting my little boy to sleep I started reading this book the very same day with the little torch in my phone.
The book starts with Annie’s 13 birthday describing her life at school, home, her friends,relatives her crushes and lots more. Life of a regular teenager, perfectly happy going through confusing emotions. I could so relate to her, I remembered my teenage years though Annie was far more mature and a deep thinker than I was then.
I knew from the start of the book the fate of Annie. I could not put the book down, her discription of hiding was so vivid as if I could see everything in front of my eyes . Absolutely Honest and very insightful .
This book had got in my head, it is so deep, it has so many layers, for a week I lost my ability to joke, I was in a serious zone. It was the only thing that was going on in my mind. My dreams for the whole week while reading the book were only related to Annie frank and the Holocaust.
One day I dreamt that nazi planes where flying and bombs where dropped,
Another dream was of me in Amsterdam, I was shivering in the rainy weather , I was in secret annex house in hiding, I felt so weak in my knees when I woke up.
One afternoon while reading the book I dozed off and saw visions of the concentration camp which I had seen in the movie Schindler’s list. I woke up in a shock, saw my son peacefully sleeping next to me, could not sleep again, thanked God and prayed that none of us witnesses the Holocaust or anything like that again . I prayed that no Hitler is born again.
After finishing the book, I googled about Annie and wondered who the hell must have betrayed them?
I decided to cook the food Annie and the rest eat for almost 2 years during their hiding. Black beans, potatoes and bread rest of the things were added to the menu according to supplies.
I could not stop thinking about Annie,her maturity, her self critical nature, her way of anylising and observibg people to the very detail, her maturity and reasoning. Wow! what a girl, she taught me so much, yet she was so young before she left.
If only she had lived through the war..
Now whenever I think of the Holocaust, I want to scream for all the unfair killings and for what ? Wish Annie was alive, wish all the jews were not killed. And all was well…
In loving memory of amazing Annie Frank
I am glad we live today in this era, I visited a stationery store, the shopkeeper and he found today’s children growing up in a hopeless manner with their iPads and video games, he believed times are so bad for children to grow, I sort of agreed with him then, now I change my opinion, today is a good time at least our children have a freedom to live the way they want, there are no nazi soldiers on the streets, there are no bombing planes nor any fear of concentration camps…
no complains today is a good time to live, we are truly blessed and All Izz Well.
p.s. This is a great book to gift to cribbers, hopefully they will feel ashamed and not bore us with oh the weather is so bad, oh it’s so crowded oh this and that…;-)