Past Articles
This form does not yet contain any fields.


    As most of you know, in the Spring, I will be moving to Hacienda at the Canyon, a new senior residence now being built right across the street from where I live. My 975 sq. ft. apartment (independent living) will have two bedrooms, two bathrooms, a small kitchen and a nice sized living room with a balcony overlooking the mountains.

    Consequently, I have been downsizing for the past 6 months, and in the process (since I have kept everything) I have found a myriad of mementos—not only from my life experiences—but also sentimental treasures from the lives of my parents and my in-laws.

    For instance, in 1917, my future Mother-In-Law and Father-In-Law went to a place called, “The Golden Pumpkin.” Waiter #11 was their server.  They had swiped a notice off the table which read, “Dancing known as the ‘Shimmy,’ ‘Toddle,’ or similar style is not permitted in the Golden Pumpkin. Persons indulging in such will be requested to leave. Do not mix parties in dancing.”’

    My Mother-In-Law had also kept the special “Roxy Hart Extra Edition” of the Chicago Star Gazette whose headline reported that, “Roxie Hart is Acquitted.” Roxie Hart (the basis for the musical, CHICAGO) was “Chicago’s most beautiful murderess.” And, there was a photo,”Only photo ever taken inside the County Jail.” “Chicago’s beautiful jazz murderess says, ‘Dancing feet caused my downfall.”’

    I also found a photo of my paternal, German Grandfather, Samuel and his four brothers. All of them posed in their army uniforms during WWI. I am sure that none of them were very good shots, but  German Jews were sent to the front because they were expendable. My gentle Grandpa was known to be an up- into-the-air shooter. Anyway, I used to look at the photo and say, “Grandpa you were so handsome.” He always smiled, and said “Danke” (Thanks). After he died, I looked at the photo, one more time, and said to my Aunt, “Wasn’t Grandpa handsome!” And, she replied, “That wasn’t Grandpa. That was his good-looking brother. Sly Grandpa, took credit for my compliment every time.

    Grandpa told me that on one Christmas, an Armistice was declared, and he heard a yell from the  other (what later became Poland) side…”Samuel, is that you?” A chess playing buddy from the other side had recognized him. They met in the middle of the field, set up a make shift table and played chess until the Armistice was over. They then returned to their positions and the shooting resumed.

    When I was three years old, my family escaped the Nazis in 1939, and I became a naturalized citizen on my parent’s papers. When I turned 18, I went to court and obtained my own citizenship papers.

    Last week, while going through piles of paper with my son, Josh, he found the paperwork which proved my naturalization. I had never seen them before. However, with the new attitudes in Washington toward immigrants, I put those papers into the safety deposit box at my bank. I don’t want to be deported to Stettin, Germany where I was born—-especially since there is no Stettin, Germany anymore. It became a lost city after WWII, and is now a town in Poland called Szczecin (I think). The only Polish I know is “Pass the Pierogi.”

    Cheers and Do Widzenig!

    Esther Blumenfeld

    PrintView Printer Friendly Version

    EmailEmail Article to Friend

    Reader Comments

    There are no comments for this journal entry. To create a new comment, use the form below.

    PostPost a New Comment

    Enter your information below to add a new comment.

    My response is on my own website »
    Author Email (optional):
    Author URL (optional):
    Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>