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Letters from Dotnuva (cont.)









Translated by Sara Mages

  17 May 1937

Friedale Shalom,

As you already know, Leah is already here with me. You can imagine our meeting. You once wrote me how two sisters suddenly me and how you envied them. The day will come and also you will meet not only with one, but with all of them together. It could really happen faster to you, since your chances to settle in the “Golden Land” are much better than here. Well, then, there will be a great joy, (don't you believe?) Leah feels very good and so am I.

Freidale, it's possible to feel an inter joy between the lines of your letter. I'm very happy that you finally found a person that you're interest in. After all, I don't know how close your relationship is. I will only tell you one thing, don't get used to him if you don't have a chance to get along in the future. Later, we suffer a lot.

Surely you wrote me the opposite. I'm also happy. A young man named Geinger came to visit me and gave me a greeting from you, a very good greeting, that you look good and that you're a pretty, cheerful, good young woman. I'm writing exactly what he said. He promised me that if he returns to America he would come to see me before his trip.

How are you? Are you working hard? Why don't you write about your wages?

Leah is thinking of traveling to the kibbutz on Wednesday. I will travel with her so I could b there and see how she settled.

I think that Leah had chosen the best way. I hope that she will be interested in the community that lives there. Life in a kibbutz isn't too difficult. Life without worry.

We're sending you a number of pictures from a trip that we took on “Shavuot”, a very successful and interesting trip.

Shalom sister, be well and write more often. I'll try to be more punctual.
Your loyal sister, Shoshana.

9 May 1937 Mizpe Hasharon Raanana

[The beginning of the letter wasn't found]

... I already got used to them, they don't look too bad. Some of them understand and speak Hebrew. In general, it's quiet now in Israel, and we hope that the same riots will not return.

And about me, I feel pretty good. I have a suntan and I already look like an Israeli. I rested enough when I stayed with Shoshana, and now I am getting ready to move to my kibbutz in Raanana, but before I move to Raanana, we want to visit the Jordan Valley during the holiday of Shavuot, and later, Tel Aviv and surrounding area. A whole group is traveling to the valley, Zehava Frid will come from Tel Aviv, and we will travel together.

When I tell someone that I'm joining a kibbutz, they tell me that it's a very good idea. First, life is more interesting in all areas, and second, now it's extremely difficult for an individual to manage alone and get a job. There are unemployed, and it's not easy to find a job. But you already know how difficult it is to get a job. I don't want to live alone, and I find that life in a kibbutz will be right and proper for me.

A week ago I met Leah Kalchko in the street, she was very happy to see me and promised to visit me, but she didn't come. She settled in Herzlia and didn't work for a long time. Her two sisters live there. One of her sisters, who lives there with her boy, traveled to Lita to visit her mother.

Leah [Kalchko] isn't satisfied, and she doesn't know if she'll remain here because she doesn't have a chance to leave the country. She can't digest the local food, and therefore, she suffers from here stomach. She looks very bad and lost a lot of weight. She says that you should be happy that you're in America and not in Israel. She sends you her greetings. I also met Shoshana Cohen. I was in the Hakhshara with her. She also just came to Israel, and she also sends her greeting.

What's new with you? Are you working? How is your English, do you already know the language well? How is your health? How do you feel in our uncle's house? I want you to write me about everything.

I don't know what to do, our Miriam asks, and also demands, that I will find a way for her to come to Israel, but I really doubt if she needs to come here. It'll be quite difficult for her to settle. I don't have the courage to write it to her, and she also doesn't understand it. When I was at home I explained to her that this isn't the place for her, especially when the situation in Israel isn't very good.

Greetings to you from Vintzki, he became a completely different person. First, he's working very hard, and he also changed all the habits that he had when he worked as a teacher in Dotnuva.

Shulamit, I ask you to write me more about your life. Regards to your young man. Next time I'll send pictures.

Yours, Leah

I started to write this letter before the holiday of Shavuot. Meanwhile, we traveled to the Jordan Valley and the letter remained lying.

It was a wonderful trip. We passed the whole valley on the way to the Jordan Valley, and my heart was happy when I saw all the Jewish settlements in the Jezreel Valley and the Jordan Valley.

Ten of us traveled to Kibbutz Beit Zera, we have a lot of friends there, and they received us exceptionally well. We stayed there for two days, and during the time we visited the area, Degania Alef, Degania Bet, and Kvutzat Kinneret. We swam in Lake Kinneret [Sea of Galilee] and saw the Rutenberg power station. We also visited two new settlements “Sade” and “Masada”, which settled during the days of the riots - it was an extraordinary act of heroism on their part.

If only you could see how many live in desolated places, between the mountains, where Arabs live. Even now, when it's already quiet in Israel, mounted guards protect the area all day long. In brief, this short trip was wonderful, and the whole group enjoyed it very much. Even today, I'm under the impression of the settlements that blossom in the remote areas. I could have written you more about all these places, but I'm a little tired, I already wrote a long letter home, and I have no more patience to write.

Also Zahava Frid participated in this trip. I will finish.

The one above.


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