After Leningrad: From the Caucasus to the Rhine, August 9, 1942-March 25, 1945: a Diary of Survival during World War II

After Leningrad: From the Caucasus to the Rhine, August 9, 1942-March 25, 1945: a Diary of Survival during World War II

After Leningrad: From the Caucasus to the Rhine, August 9, 1942-March 25, 1945: a Diary of Survival during World War II

After Leningrad: From the Caucasus to the Rhine, August 9, 1942-March 25, 1945: a Diary of Survival during World War II

Synopsis

This second volume in the odyssey of a Leningrader who escaped the siege continues here from the point of this remarkable observer's evacuation from the city. It tells of her nomadic wandering to the Caucasus and later to the Rhine, in an "unadorned but eloquent prose that is remarkably affecting" (Publisher's Weekly).

After Leningrad begins August 9, 1942, the night a German army invaded Pyatigorsk, the city to which she and her family had escaped across the ice of Lake Lagoda, a harrowing tale concluding the first volume of this series. After surviving the inferno created by the Germans, the Skrjabinas and thousands of other Russians endured the return of the Red Army five months later, which had been ordered to shoot all males between the ages of 16 and 55. To escape this vengeance, the Russians retreated with the routed German army. This diary recreates that massive retreat, ending at a forced labor camp in Bendorf, Germany, from which deliverance came only at the end of the war in Europe.

Excerpt

December 18, 1943 Five weeks have flashed by as though they were one day. There was not a minute to sit calmly and write down everything which has occurred. Everything has been a blur of names, persons, impressions. the interview with Mr. Wefelscheid went well. As so often in recent times, my knowledge of German has been very useful. He was friendly, and he listened to me--and I knew very soon that I could be sure of getting a job in his factory and a roof over my head. Most important of all, however, was that we would be living in a quiet region in a provincial city, which was, by the way, beautifully situated on the banks of the Rhine. Everything has turned out so well that we couldn't hope for anything better.

Now I wanted to see those relatives who had answered my notice in the newspaper--my cousins in Vienna. I found out that to extend my leave from the camp I had to go to the Landesamt (district administrative office). Yuri and I went to Koblenz and saw the official who handled the affairs of foreigners. We received a two-week extension relatively easily. the next day Samanov took us to the station and we headed straight for Vienna. the trip was far from pleasant. All the seats on the train were taken, and we had to sit on our suitcase in the . . .

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