Pola continues to save whatever is possible to save from Adolfas'
diaries written after 1950 and his arrival in the USA. Many pages were
badly burned in the fire of '93 which destroyed the house in River Road.
Progress is being made, though slowly.
She has proofed Part 1 of George the Man and is currently working on Part 2. Parts 3 and 4 wait in the wings.
George the Man is Adolfas' magnum opus. Entitled by him - a nonautobiographical biography, written posthumously by Adolfas Mekas.
Sempre avanti !
to George from Pola
George, this is an excerpt from Adolfas’ diaries which I have uncovered, originally written in Lithuania. He translated them in 1973 while we lived on West 89th Street. Pola
August 11, 1945 - Wiesbaden.
We got to Wiesbaden, spa city of the czars and princes. We are tired of railway stations, we are tired of bombed out bridges, we are tired of sleeping standing up. We are very tired. We decided to settle down here, in this beautiful white city.
From Flensburg to Wiesbaden -- 1,253 kilometers. And 63 days on the train boxcars.
Birzai--Joniskelis--Panevezys--Joniskelis--Panevezys--Siauliai--Tilze--Königsberg--Dirschau--Posawalki--Stettin--Neumünster --Elmshorn--Hamburg--Emlshorn--Pinneberg--Elmshorn--Friedrichstadt--Husum--Flensburg--Husum--Flensburg--Husum--Schleswig --Husum--Schleswig--Neuhof--Flensburg--Elmshorn--Hamburg--Bremen--Hanover--Göttingen--Kassel--Giessen--Hanau--Würzburg--Aschafenburg--Darmstadt--Weinheim--Mannheim--Heidelberg--Weinheim--Frankfurt--Wiesbaden--Hanau--Wiesbaden--Würzburg--Wiesbaden.
August 11, 1945 - Wiesbaden
When we came here, the administration sent us to a theatre where over 300 people slept awaiting room assignment. We spent a week there. Actually, we left our boxes in the theatre, but we ate and slept and read in the corridor. In the corridor there was a table on which we slept. The table was too small for both of us. One had to sleep on the cement floor. We switched during the night. The cement floor was cold. And the windows all around us had no glass. It was windy!
By gathering boards and broken doors we built ourselves a room in the attic of Building M of these military barracks where UNRRA is housing the Baltic people now. We built something that resembles a room. We have even a door, that opens and shuts. A small window faces south.
After more than a year, today we have our own table to sit at. It is a small table, covered with books and papers. It feels great to have privacy!
The entire attic is full of these makeshift rooms. You can hear everything anybody says or does in any of these rooms. Fights, love making, snoring. But it is better than what we had before. Better than sleeping in a room with 10 or 20 or 40 Lithuanians.
All day everybody talks about food: how much food we will get today, how much food we will get tomorrow? Where can one get more food? There was not enough food here. Not like in Flensburg. This was a poor DP camp. Everybody was either stealing, cheating or black marketing food.
When the Yugoslavs left for home, they vacated three large buildings. There was ample room for all the people sleeping in the theatre awaiting room assignment. That's us. But the Lithuanians sneaked into the vacated buildings at night, occupied all the rooms, especially the small ones.
In the morning we received our room assignment from the administration. But the room was already occupied by Lithuanian squatters who refused to budge. We had no place to go. That's how we ended up in the cold attic. We are quite happy here, though mad.
In the evening we read in a German paper that yesterday the war had ended. Japan had capitulated. The atomic bomb dropped on Japan weighed 200 kilos, and the critical mass weighed only 2 kilos. A man said: "Now we will have no more wars, or no more people."
Yesterday by Sean
Today by Sean