A few months before the war, we moved into an apartment downtown. The apartment, which my parents rented a few months before the war broke out, was very spacious. Admittedly on the fourth floor without an elevator. But the apartment was originally half of an apartment of Polish dignitaries with about 15 rooms. The house was huge with two entrances on either side of the building that was like the letter "L". The owner of the building managed and closed a passage in the middle of the huge apartment and thus created two apartments with separate entrances. I especially remember the huge living room, over 100 square meters in size, with three huge windows with a large heater up to the ceiling. I especially enjoyed the hardwood floor I rode on a bike because we were forbidden to ride in the city.
At that time not every apartment had a bathroom and toilet. I remember how they were installed at the request of my father. Given that at that time, the plumbing fittings were made of iron only, because plastic was not yet known and the work was complicated. The structure of the house was built of red bricks and each wall, its thickness was 60-80 cm. Did not carve inside the wall these installed the pipes on the wall. The apartment was only partially furnished because my parents had not yet had time to buy all the furniture.
WAR WORD TWO Started on 1st September 1939
In Poland there was a feeling that the Polish government was selling Poland's independence to Hitler's Nazi regime. On September 1, 1939, the German army invaded Poland. It took them six days to reach the outskirts of the city of Lodz.
On September 6, 1939, on the eve of the occupation of the city, messages were broadcast on government radio that all men should leave the city and flee. The announcers announced the news in a very dramatic way, which caused a great panic. They frightened the residents of the city, most of whom were Jewish, that according to the message they received from the Germans, soldiers would kill all the men who remained in the city.
My parents also decided to join the fugitives, but together with us, the children. I was 15 years old and my sister Sabina, 18 years old. At 11:00 at night we took some belongings on our backs or in a suitcase and left the apartment. At midnight we reached the main road with the aim of first reaching the capital city of Warsaw about 120 km away. And maybe after that, to reach Soviet Union, Russia, another 500 km away.
And in them, we just fled from Lodz. We saw tens of thousands of people, marching with us. We walked all night, and the mess was big. Early in the morning, German Stuka planes attacked the fleeing crowd. Dropped bombs and fired on machine guns.
The Polish soldiers who withdrew with the primitive weapon being towed by 4 horses marched with us. At dawn, German "silent" planes attacked the marchers from the machine guns with a deafening siren. During one of these attacks, I saw a Polish officer walking a few meters away from me, hit in the face by a bullet from the plane's machine gun. I saw a part of the officer's head, torn. I heard him mumble "Mama" (mom) and a second later fall. dead. This is the first time I've seen a dead person.
The march also involved anti-Semitism in her name. The villagers refused to sell us Jews, food, drink or allow us to sleep, rest, bathe. My parents tried to persuade them to lodge us in a pigsty and of course offered payment they refused. We were expelled violently sometimes even with pitchforks. Individuals were human enough and allowed us to rest at night.
Two and a half days we walked like this in the direction of Warsaw. We barely managed to get about 25 km. In order to reach Warsaw, we were left with another distance of about 100 km. But the German army was more agile and got us. On the morning of the third day of our wanderings, my parents saw that the Germans had passed us. They came to the conclusion that there was no point in continuing. They decided to return to Lodz. This time we had to walk the distance back.