Limanskoje, Odessa Oblast, Ukraine
1 November 1995
Greetings from Selz. I received the package on October 20; they
brought it to me as far as my room. I did not have to pay anything.
It was a great joy for me, believe me. And now I will describe what
was inside. There were men's shirts with long and short sleeves,
women's clothes, a crocheted scarf, two men's jackets and food--noodle
soup, macaroni, sausage, a can of lard, raisins and sweets, tea
and coffee and dried milk. As far as I know the package went through
Poland and the declaration was written in Polish. I thank you a
thousand times, that you do good to me, it is a big help for us.
In the meantime Swetlana from Odessa was in Selz with two Americans,
but just for a short time and I do not know their names.
Karl Lacher gave me a letter with money. They could not speak
German, but of course I don't know any English. One of them was
a priest, that wasn't Thomas, was it? He would have said it, because
to be here in Selz seeing me and not telling who he is, something
like that cannot be. Karl and his wife are very good people. I thank
them from my heart, God shall watch over them and they should live
for a long time. I want to meet with all of you my dear ones.
You wrote that you are coming to Germany, so please call up Aunt
Rosa and tell her that Emilie has died, as I have not written anyone,
because they are all silent--like Franz or Emmi. No one wants to
hear anything from us, or are they afraid that I want something
from them? I require nothing from anyone, God will not desert me.
Complete strangers help us.
Karl wrote me that I should write saying what I need. It is really
a shame but what can I do or say that I am poor? It is true but
sad. My Andreas needs trousers, they are named Dschinze, size 46,
and Krasovki 41-40 sport shoes, I think they are called. Nastja
needs a pretty little dress; she will be 3 years old on the 9th
of November, and would be very happy. She has already eaten all
of the sweets.
Food is the main thing. I have written a letter to you and it
is supposed to be sent by way of Germany, but I am not certain whether
that is true. Because Odessa does not accept written addresses,
they must be printed and in Latin letters. One does not find anything
like that in Selz. You sent me envelopes and if they did not have
your address on them it would be all right.
I cannot write to Karl because it is very expensive. He should not
feel offended by me. I wrote Thomas but did not receive a reply.
Why not? Have I offended him by not calling him Father Thomas? We
are not used to that and did not learn to do that. I ask for forgiveness,
we are, of course, friends even in our misery. Or does he have so
little time to answer me? I have asked him to do everything necessary
at the church. There are no German churches here, otherwise I would
have done it myself. I hope that Thomas will be present in June,
I am very glad that Karl will be there, it will be a very nice
meeting. I will meet with the people that are still here that they
know that you are coming. With you I will not only go as far as
Odessa, but to America. My children also want to meet with you.
I am prepared for everything, believe me. One cannot write everything
in a letter, it will be better when we meet in December and discuss
The weather is already cool. We already had frost at 30 degrees.
Winter will be here soon and there is very little fuel, one has
to save. I have not yet heated my room, want to wait a little longer.
I hope that you will still get my letter before you leave. Please,
Michael, call up Karl and Thomas and tell them that I send heartfelt
greetings from Selz and wish them everything good and beautiful.
The main thing is health to you all.
On the package only Welk was written, but at the post office my
Russian family is Ivanova. Please write that, otherwise they will
not give me the package. I showed the envelopes you sent and so
the men believed that it was me.
Antonina Iwanowa from Selz