Saturday, June 1, 2013

Threads of LifeThreads of Life

June 1, 2013
Weekend Writing Warrior entry of 8 sentences

This week will be a very calm, boring entry. I don't know if German people sang Happy Birthday at that time. I'm guessing that poor, shy people did not want to draw attention to themselves.

"Minna had her 9th birthday on the ship October 30th but there was nothing with which to celebrate. The four children, Emma, Ida, Gustav and Minna, together with their grandmother, Caroline Weinert Freimann reached Quebec 7 November 1902. Somehow they found the train to take them across Canada to Edmonton. Minna remembered stopping somewhere along the way to visit relatives, but she did not remember where this had been or who they had visited. Here they had their first real meal since leaving their previous home. They may have stayed a few days and had several meals to help build them up for the rest of their trip.  Embarking the train once again, they traveled to Edmonton, Alberta. Here uncle and son, Friedrich Freimann met them with  a wagon and horses."

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  1. Well, that's a bleak birthday but you describe it well!

  2. Such a bleak time. I don't know if the words "Happy Birthday" had been put to the song, yet. From what I read, it began as "Good morning to you." in 1893. But I think you are probably right--poor and shy, they'd have not wanted to draw attention to themselves.

    They are all good German names. :-) I live in an area first settled by Germans. Our closest small town is Saxonburg--and I think that says a lot. :-)

    Another wonderful 8, Carol! :-)

  3. Calm, yes, but not boring. There is an intimacy in this scene that makes it feel like reading someone's diary. Just the line "there was nothing with which to celebrate" gives such a clear sense of the mood of Minna's birthday. Really a great snippet, very well-written!

    1. Thank you rleesmith. I'm hoping that family will some day see it as you do.

  4. I heard the song "Tradition" from Fiddler on the Roof tonight and thought it fit this time very well. Having grown up on a farm, boys and girls were expected to work like adults by the time we were 12. I have no doubt that the mother, Auguste, had taught at least the two older girls how to cook and sew and do the domestic duties. I believe that they needed to do this as their mother was dying of tuberculosis, or even while she was, supposedly, working in the "starch factory", which they thought erroneously, caused her illness.

  5. I can't imagine how difficult that must have been. The way you have been telling the story every week, I can picture how they must have savored that first meal.

    I bet though working in a starch factory would be hard on the lungs and might have irritated the tuberculosis all the more.

    History Sleuth's Milk Carton Murders

  6. I'm enjoying this story. I like to have Minna's point of view of the trip. It's very fresh compared to what an adult would have thought about.

  7. This is such an interesting but sad story! You tell it so well. (BTW I have a German background also.) I'm a week late and sorry to have missed it before.