Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Olga Adler - July 26, 1982

Budapest Ghetto 2

Now you were talking about the ghetto.

The ghetto was a terrible thing. First of all, we thought that they are going to put bombs. They are always saying, what is ??? it's something where they put under it, it blows up the whole thing.


Mines. Constantly, they are putting mines under the ghetto. There was one, there wasn't one. I was in one, let's see, I was in one part of the building where I was, I was helping this young man doing everything, whatever they had to do. You know what? They took people out from the insane asylum and they brought them into the ghetto. And there was a gentleman, as I remember back, a most, a most handsome, tall, elegant looking white-haired gentleman who I was always playing... He was always giving tea, afternoon tea. I sat down with him and I was serving, pretending because we didn't have...


tea. I took him to the bathroom, a young girl, I never saw anything like it. I took his business out and I helped him, helped him out. I did everything. Nothing was too much for me to do. It was just... I saw people from one minute to the other go mad. Going into the fields when I was working there with the, at the, those, those camp. People who arrive, let's say in their forties, fifties uh, black-haired handsome men. If uh, three hours later with snow-white hair going completely mad. Completely losing himself. He didn't know where he is. Had to go into the fields to get him back. You don't know what things like this does to people. You know, we were locked in there with the, with the, from the insane asylum as I say, they didn't take them. They were very nice, they didn't shoot them but they just brought them into the ghetto, everybody was brought into the ghetto. They thought they are going to mine this ghetto under anyways, they are going to blow it up. Nobody ever thought that this ghetto is going to uh, survive or anything. It was just uh, but, but life went on, as I say. There was uh, there were moments when we were going into the, to those soldie... those uh, uh, young men who came back and we were making little plays, we were singing for them, to them and doing little plays and entertaining them because they were lying, laying on their back, they couldn't move. We were trying to... I as a young girl I never knew how to cook, but we were constantly cooking. Everybody was telling recipes how to cook and what my mother did and what my... You know you have to cut out the reality and uh, talking, doing silly things and this helped a lot that we did that. So, you go into uh, one building and uh, and you're talking to them and you are going in for, for something into the other part of that building and two minutes later a bomb fell... falls there and you talked with them two minutes ago and they are all just, just splashed all over the place and nobody stays alive. And that, that happened an awful lot too. Now why didn't I stay with them, why did I go in the other room? Tell me. Why was it then when we went out uh, after a bombing and we were doing, because we didn't have nothing to dig with and we dug out somebody who was alive and well and cut on the forehead, which we washed and we put and the other one was completely demolished. It is just fate. Don't you think so?

© Board of Regents University of Michigan-Dearborn