I am shaking-scared.
We are at the mercy of these terrible people, these soldiers, who clearly act like they hate us. They continue to shout obscenities at us in rapid-fire German and treat Mama and Papa roughly. More than once I have seen them punch Papa in the face or spit on him when Papa refused to answer their questions, or pull Mama by the hair until she screams.
Their ill treatment of my parents makes me want to kill them with my own bare hands, but I am only a mere child of 11 years: they are no match for my puny, scrawny self.
Now we are to board a train to go to "parts unknown". I have no clue what is going to happen to us, but it cannot possibly be at all good.
I don't know what we could have done to anger these bad people so.
We aren't alone: there are hundreds, no, perhaps, thousands of other people with us, including many families. All are as terrified of the situation at hand, if not, even more so.
I do notice one common thing, though: all of the people, including us, have the unmistakable yellow star, the "Star of David", sewn on our clothes. All of us are bound together by one thing: we are all Jews. These people are no longer strangers: we are suddenly brothers and sisters. It is as if we have suddenly become "family".
The soldiers pace back and forth as family after family are forcibly pushed onto these trains. When asked where we are going, these men scream at us in German; to us it sounds like gibberish: it makes absolutely no sense to our ears at all. They seem angrier than ever.
Mama pulls me to her breast as she murmurs in my ear: "Child, we are gong on a trip. Where, that is uncertain, but I am sure it will be quite wonderful. Anything has got to be better than this, what we are facing now."
Somehow, that is of little comfort as I look about me. People are not smiling or laughing: they all appear silent, stone-faced, even scared; a good many of them, mostly children or babies, are crying hysterically.
I feel something horrible is going to happen to us. If it is this bad now, what is it going to be like when we reach our destination?? Vomit works its way up my gullet, but I force it back down by gulping hard; as I do, tears fill my eyes and the scene of suffering humanity blurs into a myriad of color and confusion.
~To be continued.~