Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Miriam Troostwyk - May 28, 1998 and June 3, 1999

Meeting Husband (Con't)


They came from Germany. She was a piano uh, teacher and her voice was very good. She gave lessons. She was in Berlin before the war on the Concert ???. And she was singing very nicely. And she wanted me to come in Jewish uh, with Jewish people together. So she said, "I am--they asked me to play and sing for Macabee. Could you play the French chansons for me? I give you the music and you study it at home. And then you come on the weekend to me in Amsterdam and then we study it together, but I sing it and you play. And then you can play at Macabee and I will sing." And we were...

Which French songs?

And we were--???. [laughs] I don't know all these titles and...

But they, they weren't patriotic songs?

No, no. No, it was more chansons.


And that was on stage and it was a party. So--and there was--like cabaret. So I was playing and she was singing. And after that there was a dance and, and drinks and--cold drinks and some uh, alcohol. And my husband came in. He was--I was seventeen, he was eighteen, eighteen now. And he came with his boyfriends and you know, he thought, well, that is that blonde girl who was playing. I don't know her, she must be from Amsterdam, but I've never seen her here on the thing.


So he asked me for a dance. And we were talking. So I said where am I from and this and that and how I came here. And he--and I said, "Well, there is a possibility that I will go to the Israeli Consulate to work there because I send my letter. And I'm waiting when I can come for Amsterdam to talk with them." So he said, "Well, we need somebody in our office too and would you like to come?" And uh, and they had a secretary and the secretary was the--from Anne Frank uh, father, the girlfriend, he married her a year later.

No kidding.

Mrs. Gehringer.


She was the secretary for my father-in-law. She married Mr. Frank right after the war.

So you...


Had you met her? You met her? Well, no one was talking about The Diary of Anne Frank then.



So um, I said to my husband--well, I didn't know he will [laughs] maybe will be my husband--and I said, "Well, what do I have to do in your business?" He said--"what kind of business?" I said. He said, "Well, we make--uh, we have auctions for a machinery plant and we have uh, insurance. We do insurance for factories. And you have to write reports." I said, "What kind of reports do I have to write?" He said, "This is a chair and this is a, uh, a table and this is uh, an, an, a desk and this is a--so we go to the factories and then uh, we write down for the insurance, um..."


Yeah, inventories. I said, "That's not interesting. I'm not doing that. That is boring."


I said, "No, not for me." He said, "Why not?" I said, "I can't do that. There's nothing to read, there's nothing--it's not for me. It's boring." So he said, "Okay, sorry." He said, "But can we go out together?"


I said, "Yeah, that is really nice." So he invited me. But then he got another girlfriend that was um, from the uh, uh, friend from him, the sister, she had an eye on him. I didn't know that because I didn't know him. And when I was at the Consulate, he came always with the car from his father in lunchtime, driving around the Consulate until I came out, to say hello to me. And I said to my girlfriend, "Can you understand that Arnold Troostwyk is coming to say hello? Although he has a girlfriend. What does he want from me? When he has a girlfriend, leave me alone, it's fine." But I waved and that was that. And she was uh, uh, they had a jewelry store. And always when I did an exam, because when I was working, I still went to school or--in the even or on Saturday or whatever. And when I passed an exam, I got a little charm from my, uh...


family. And I only choose um, Jewish charms, because I was very into Jewish. Jewish was my life and I didn't want--I wanted to go out with non-Jewish boys, but I was thinking, I will never marry a Jew--a non-Jewish boy. Why? Not because uh, I'm against non-Jewish boys...

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