Thursday, September 8, 2016

December 17, 1940: No News is Bad News

Letter from Ella to Opa


Berlin, Charlottenburg 4, December 17, 1940
Droysenstrasse 14

My beloved boy,
What’s going on, that I still haven’t received any news from you? I get mail from Ellenruth fairly regularly, and also from Hanna. I’m terribly worried about you, my boy! I know you write promptly, and can only think you must be sick. This being far away is almost unbearable. I haven’t heard anything from Patti for a long time, either. If I could call, I would have tried to have a conversation with the college. I’m terribly anxious. Every day, with every mail delivery, I hope—and always in vain.
Now it’s almost Christmas! Probably this letter won’t get there until later. I will—like every day— be with you strongly and wish you lovely hours and days. I’d like more than anything to stay home all alone, so that I can concentrate all of my wishes and feelings on the two of you all day. But I’ll have a lot of company; everyone knows I’m free and will come over. –Annchen is probably traveling to Frankfurt. There she can rest the best. Anni and Gis still haven’t been over; we’re scheduled for Friday; hopefully that will work out this time.
Tomorrow and the day after there are lectures with the Quakers—tomorrow by Dr. Otto Buchinger/ Pyrmont, Thursday by Douglas Hure.  I’m going to try to be free on Thursday.
Hunschen, if only I had news from you!  I kiss my boy!
Your Mama

I'm equally curious as to why Ella doesn't hear from Opa. We know he has received her letters because he wrote to the AFSC in response to one. I wouldn't be so confused if she wasn't also receiving letters regularly from Ellenruth. What is the hold up? 

Ella continues to stay connected to the Quakers and her friends and family. She continues to wish for quiet days when she can hold her children, at least the thought of them, in her heart all day. 

Ella did not mention the Stiers, so I'm assuming they are still with her and still planning on leaving soon. Their plans seem to be delayed continually- not a surprise from all the stories of how refugees had to wait and see if their plan would open up at the opportune time.

You know who we haven't heard from in a while? August. Ever since the Nazi invasion of Holland in May, we have heard nothing but rumors of his well-being through his sister Annchen, and through Ella's contacts. I do think it is a little odd that even Ella has stop mentioning him. I wonder if Opa feels the same dread in his heart every month that goes by and he doesn't hear from his Dad.

In this time, no news is bad news- and Ella fears for Opa. This is not faded much by the reality that Opa is the safest of his whole family- in the middle of America.

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