Cycle for Survival Chicago

Since my partner died of cancer in a Northwestern Hospital bed on a sunny day in June of 2018, every return to our former home city of Chicago has meant an emotional collapse for me. But not this time. This time I returned for Chicago’s Cycle for Survival event, joining Jeff’s friends in remembering …

Theresienstadt

Picture this: The International Red Cross is coming to the ghetto. Yes, that kind of ghetto. The European ghettos that Jews were forced into during the horrific years of 1938-1945. There is overcrowding. There is stench. There is death. There is death everywhere, in fact. But the Red Cross is coming. The year is …

Never Forget

I hesitated before booking “Hitler’s Vienna: A 2.5-Hour Historical Walking Tour.” The name scared me a little. Would the tour in any way glorify the man? Would I be able to stomach 2.5 hours of learning about Adolf Hitler? In the end, I am glad I booked the tour. In no way did our …

Shoes on the Danube

Sometimes simplicity makes for the most powerful memorials, and that is true of the Shoes on the Danube Promenade where I returned multiple times when visiting Budapest. On the other hand, there is something to be said for largescale remembrance, and that’s true of the Dohány Street Synagogue, also known as the Great Synagogue …

Ravensbruck Nazi Death Camp

There was a Nazi concentration camp built just for women. Ravensbrück sits on the shore of a picturesque lake in northern Berlin, the beauty of the scenery belying the horror that once reigned there. Unlike other camps, Ravensbrück was not built specifically for Jewish prisoners. It was built to hold about 6,000 female prisoners …

Château de Chenonceau in the Loire Valley

All you need to know before you go to the best château in the Loire Valley: A visit to France’s Loire Valley is truly incomplete without a visit to Château de Chenonceau. I was first attracted to the Loire Valley because of the Loire River, which served as the demarcation line in central France during WWII. …

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