Dark, cold, bloody – This is Nazi Germany. Walking down the street you see windows shattered, hear loud voices consumed of anger in every street corner, and see posters everywhere attacking different races and their reputation. Who’s right? Running home, shadows chase you, consuming you in a world of darkness. Sprinting through the front door of your house, you wonder why you still don’t feel safe. Is this right? Normal? Where are you?
The war has passed, and you are now in your early 20s trying to start a new life. Through this process, you find a Woman, seemingly perfect to you. Entering the house for dinner one night, accompanied by your girlfriend, you are very unaware of the outcome. “Jude!” You feel the word echoing throughout the house. You turn over and see your girlfriend, grabbing you hand tighter and tighter as if your hand was being strangled. Why? The war passed. But why? As WW2 comes to an end, a war between you and your parents explodes, and you begin to feel smaller and smaller, struck constantly by the shots coming out of your parents mouth. You are called a disappointment. You are a disappointment. Are they right?
Grabbing your girlfriend by the arm, you run as if you were a gazelle bolting away from its predator. Questions flying in and out of your mind, looking for answers, you find yourself in a state of confusion, sadness, and fantasy. Coming to a sense of reality, your mind clears. Freedom and opportunity begins to ring throughout your mind.
The United States. A country built on freedom and liberty. A country made of opportunity. After marrying your girlfriend, you enter the other side of the pacific, California. You see a merging of cultures, you see a black man getting lunch with a white man and begin to feel as if you have escaped your cloud of darkness. You feel as if you are the light to the dark, that you made the right decision for once in your life. The only skill you developed back in Germany was how to cook so you open a restaurant. You serve both American and Israeli food and begin to become engaged in the jewish community in your area. Giving birth to 2 kids, you enroll them into the synagogue. As you enter, a breeze of emotions flows through your system as if you have just been injected with memories from the past. You feel as if the world is consuming you like a dark hole. As you stumble to these emotions, you hear the word “Jude!” ringing throughout your head, ricocheting back and forth.
A collective cheer begins to circle your ears as you come back to your senses. Laughter and smiles surround you as you move to the noise. You continue to look around. Home. Safety. Security.
You are happy. Your body rushes with excitement as you continue an ongoing debate in your mind consisting of whether to speak up or stay quiet. You arrive home. Not your old home but a new home. Not your family from Germany, but a new one. One to be happy.