Steal a Pencil for Me (2007) - full transcript

STEAL A PENCIL FOR ME is a compelling documentary feature film by Academy Award® nominee Michèle Ohayon about the power of love and the ability of humankind to rise above unimaginable suffering. 1943: Holland is under total Nazi occupation. In Amsterdam, Jack, an unassuming accountant, first meets Ina at a birthday party - a 20-year-old beauty from a wealthy diamond manufacturing family who instantly steals his heart. But Jack's pursuit of love will be complicated; he is poor and married to Manja, a flirtatious and mercurial spouse. When the Jews are being deported, the husband, the wife and the lover find themselves at the same concentration camp; actually living in the same barracks. When Jack's wife objects to the "girlfriend" in spite of their unhappy marriage, Jack and Ina resort to writing secret love letters, which sustain them throughout the horrible circumstances of the war. Jack: "I'm a very special Holocaust survivor. I was in the camps with my wife and my girlfriend; and believe me, it wasn't easy."

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[young Jack]

"My always dearest girl,

I want to write

and let you know

how much in a very short

period of time that I've

known you, I love you."

[young Ina]

"My always dearest love,

I have much hope that we

will find each other



wherever we may land.

Kisses, Ina."

[young Jack] "I'm writing with

a pencil stub.

Darling, try to steal a pencil

for me somewhere.

Much, much love, Jaap."

[Jack] I'm a very special

Holocaust survivor.

I was in the camps with my wife

and my girlfriend,

and believe me,

it was not easy.

[Ina] I did this for



3 bar mitzvahs, 4 weddings,

75 birthday, 80th birthday,

85th birthday, 90th birthday,

and...

40th anniversary,

50th anniversary,

60th anniversary --

that's today.

[indistinct conversation]

[Jack] These books should be

on the dining table.

Okay.

[Jack] These are all

pictures of us of all the years,

you know, in this.

Okay?

60 years of marriage.

Congratulations.

Congratulations.

[Jack]

Beautiful pictures in here.

This is a nice picture, too.

[singing in German]

♪ By day I told it to the

flowers ♪

♪ I love you ♪

♪ By night I told it

to the stars ♪

♪ I love you ♪

♪ I'm singing it out

to the world ♪

♪ That just one

is pleasing me ♪

♪ That is you,

that's only you ♪

♪ When I'm hearing music

every tune is singing ♪

♪ I love you ♪

HOLLAND

♪ The sparrows on the roof

whistle it all day ♪

♪ I love you ♪

♪ My heart is filled

with longing ♪

♪ In dreams a picture appears ♪

♪ That is you,

that's only you ♪

[Jack] This was really

the lower-middle-class

Jewish community.

[speaking Dutch]

Here we used to live on

the second floor.

There we had about

four or five rooms.

My father and mother,

with three children,

all in cramped quarters,

really.

We were poor,

and we were not poor.

My father an unbelievable,

interesting, wonderful man.

They were able to show us really

that one can live without money

in wonderful ways.

The Friday evenings

were very special.

The prayers were nice.

The singing was nice.

But before we started,

he always gave us a Bentch,

a special prayer,

a wonderful blessing,

and the fact that even

my first wife,

who I had my problems with,

still remembered after the war

many times that,

"The most beautiful time of my

life was when your father gave

me Friday night blessing."

[Ina] This is the house I

lived in from 1937 till 1943

till we had to leave it.

My father was a diamond

manufacturer.

He had a polishing plant...

I would say the second largest

in Amsterdam.

So he went to the factory

every day.

He never went on Saturday.

We were Orthodox.

When he had a car,

he had a chauffeur.

We always had two maids and

then, of course, once a week,

a cleaning lady to clean

what wasn't dirty.

My mother was always busy

in the house,

and I always asked her,

"What do you do all day?"

and she says, "Tidying up."

A lot of happy memories, and I'm

happy when I see the house.

But then you think of all the

things that happened in the end

and then it puts quite

a damper on it all.

[Ina] May 10, 1940.

We heard planes, planes,

planes flying over,

and we heard shooting,

and we just knew we

had been invaded.

I was young.

I was 17.

I guess a person of 17

doesn't worry as much and

doesn't project as much

what is gonna happen.

The Dutch army held out

for five days.

[gunfire]

And on the fifth day,

they bombed Rotterdam.

They just annihilated

the whole center of the city.

And they said, "If you don't

surrender now, we'll do the

same tomorrow in Amsterdam."

[crowd chanting indistinctly]

[Jack] The most important

moment at that moment was the

leaving of the queen.

I remember crying when the

queen on the radio gave a

special speech that said,

"We will take care of you

from London,

but at this moment,

it is most prudent to leave."

[woman] I have had criticism

of the queen...

Queen Wilhelmina,

the mother of your country,

and people adored the queen.

She was something phenomenal.

I have no good word

to say about that.

[Jack] Her leaving was really

the beginning of the end.

But we didn't know that,

how bad it was going to be.

[Ina]

Things started to happen.

You couldn't drive

a car anymore.

You had to hand in

your bicycles.

You had to hand in

your radios.

And then you had to hand in

all your valuables.

[Jack] We really didn't

have the feeling that our

lives were in danger.

With every measure,

you thought you could

live with it.

We were only allowed

to do shopping between

4:00 and 6:00.

So, you would go

only shopping between

4:00 and 6:00.

Teachers, they weren't allowed

to teach anymore at the

universities and schools,

so they were teaching at

the Jewish schools.

I remember the first year we

went still to the seashore.

Second year we couldn't go to

the seashore anymore.

And still we came together and

celebrated birthdays.

[Ina] June 6, 1943.

I was going to a birthday party

of a friend of mine.

And I walk in there,

and I get introduced to

this wonderful couple.

And I said "Hello," and the

only thing that went through

my mind was,

"They don't belong

together at all."

[Jack] Manja happened

to be a wonderful woman

if she was good,

and she was an

impossible woman.

Many times she stopped talking

to me for a week.

And after a week suddenly,

she was the most charming

woman you could think of.

[Ina] She had beautiful,

curly, orangey-blond hair.

If you took her parts apart,

she wasn't that beautiful.

She didn't have a good nose.

She didn't have good eyes.

But the whole package was just

something unusual.

[Jack] Manja was really not

marriage material.

In 1941, I told Manja, I said,

"This can't go on.

Let's stay together

for the war."

She says, "No, I agree with

you. Let's just divorce

after the war."

She was sitting on the lap,

that's really when I said,

"They don't belong together"

of the father of

the birthday boy,

who obviously was flirting

back and who liked her.

All men liked Manja.

[Jack] I will never forget

coming in that room and seeing

a beautiful girl sitting there,

and I said, "My God, I wish I

was married to that girl."

I will never forget it.

And then I started talking to

her while Manja was flirting

with everybody.

I remember I spoke all the time

to that wonderful girl,

Ina Soep.

She was very well-to-do, and I

was basically poor.

And the difference between rich

and poor people was great.

But I said,

"It's a passing thing.

I will never see that girl

anymore."

[Hitler speaking German]

In the beginning,

when Hitler started

his terrible radio talks,

braying out at the Jews

and the rest of the world,

and he would kill them all,

I believed it.

I said,

"This man is going to do it."

And all the other people said,

"No, don't take it so

seriously."

I was the only one in

the family who went

into hiding because I

said, "I can only fight the

Germans or survive if I will

take on a new identity and not

let them know that

I'm Jewish or

have anything to do with the

Jews."

In the beginning, it was not

that easy to get into the

resistance for Jews.

They needed Phillip,

my husband,

because he was an officer and

knew much about arms, how to

fight the Germans.

[Ina] I wanted to go into

hiding, and I had a lot of

friends, gentile and Jewish,

who were in the resistance.

They were perfectly willing to

help me and place me someplace.

We falsified identity cards,

which is actually an art.

You have to be an artist because

it's so complicated.

[Ina] We went together to a

photographer to have --

Yeah, the beautiful picture.

[Ina] Pictures made for

false papers.

But my father got wind of it,

and he said, "You're not going.

You can't go.

If they come to arrest us, four

people, and only three, then we

will have carry the

consequences, and you can't do

that to us.

That's not fair.

And I'm...

I feel that I can protect you."

He didn't quite understand, I

think, that with the Germans,

it was a whole other deal.

My father was a member of the

Jewish council, which gave, up

to a certain point, certain

privileges.

[Jack] The poor people were

sent away first, and then the

middle class, and then

the rich people.

So, the difference between rich

and poor had never come out more

horrible than in these years.

[Jack] Every night, the Germans

were raiding homes...

[shouting in German]

[Jack] ...knocking on doors.

They say,

"Are there Jews living here?"

I remember going to the

bathroom 10, 15 times

every night,

so nervous I was.

[Betty] I only went out after

8:00, and one of those evenings,

I decided to go to the house

where Jack and Manja were living

to try to get them to go into

hiding.

I had my contacts.

I could take care of that.

But when I called at

their door, it was after 8:00.

There they were staying,

petrified faces in great fear

because it could only be the

Germans who were calling after

8:00.

But I couldn't convince them

that the Germans would kill.

[Jack] I was still an

accountant and I had clients,

and I had appointments the next

day, Jewish clients who I

helped to hide assets from the

Germans.

So I felt also a tremendous

amount of responsibility.

A hundred passes to use the

streetcars were given,

and I was

one of the hundred.

I really thought I was an

important man.

I was an important man for a

period.

I knew you were not.

[Betty] My brother said, "We are

strong, and we are young.

We will have a very hard time,

but we will survive," so I was

leaving the house like someone

who was already losing the best

part of the family.

[bell tolling]

[Jack] My father was an

accountant, and we had

an office together.

The Germans stormed in.

They said, "Everybody out."

Every Jewish one was turned out

And they were taking us all

walking to Amsterdam.

For a German a Jew

was like an animal.

When we came to a square, they

took out of the 400, 10 people.

And I was one of the 10.

They put us against the wall.

And then 10 Germans game with

their guns drawn.

And the Jew says a special

prayer, the Shema prayer, when

his death comes.

And I really thought at that

moment that my time had come.

[gunshot]

And they did not kill me.

They were shooting in the air.

All the Germans, they were

laughing their heads off.

And they were kicking my back,

and I was allowed to leave.

That gave me a tremendous amount

of willpower to say, "If I can

survive this, maybe I have a

chance."

[Ina] Both our neighbors

tried to commit suicide.

This was an elderly couple.

Put on the gas.

And I remember looking

out the window.

They had brought them outside.

They were lying on the grass,

and they survived.

On this side, number 18, lived a

young couple.

He and his wife and their

2-year-old daughter committed

suicide and succeeded.

[Ina] My brother Benno was

taken in a reprisal raid.

Eventually, they sent him

to the notorious camp

Mauthausen.

The Germans kept on promising m

father that they would get him

out.

And every time they said, "well

probably tomorrow he'll be

back,"

and I remember my

sister-in-law walking over to

the bridge there to see him

come.

Of course, it never happened.

[Jack] After all the measures

were taken, the Germans said,

"Now we are going to make a

major measure."

The major measure was the

so-called deportation,

which more or less said,

"We are going to take you

to a labor camp.

You are taking along all

necessities you have.

The small things you can take

along."

And suddenly, everybody was

packing.

You had to leave your entire

home with all the furniture,

with your records, with your

books, with everything.

[Ina] The next day, a Puls

moving truck would pull up in

front of the house, and they

would empty the house, and all

the furniture would go to

Germany.

[bell tolling]

[Jack] Westerbork was

originally created by the Dutch

government.

When German Jews came to

Holland, they tried to put them

with families, but after a

period, so many came we did

something we should

not have done.

We created that camp Westerbork

before the war.

Those German Jews were in

charge when we came into

Westerbork.

They used their might

in every way.

Basically, they get back

to us for the unfair

treatment we gave them.

I even can't blame them all

for that.

[typewriter keys clacking]

[Ina] We got there in the

evening, and we were put in a

registration hall.

And then in the middle of the

night, they told everybody,

"You go to this barrack.

You go to that barrack."

[Jack] I found out where the

Soep family is coming in.

I said, "I would like to meet

that girl."

[Ina] So, Jack went to this

housing authority and said,

"can you see to it that I get

into barrack 64?"

The three of us were in the

same barrack, Jack, his wife,

Manja, and me.

I could see Manja's bed, and

Manja could see my bed.

We were both on the third tier.

I don't remember exactly our

first meeting there,

but he must have

said something like,

"Remember we met

at that birthday,"

and that's how it started.

Usually, in the evening, we

would go out for a walk on the

so-called

Boulevard Des Misères.

It was pitch dark, so it was

very private.

We wouldn't be the only ones.

There were other couples that

were walking there till curfew.

There would be a siren, and, you

know, you had, like, five

minutes to get back.

[siren blares]

[Jack] Westerbork was unique.

There was no camp like

Westerbork in Europe.

We had a sporting ground.

We had some soccer matches

there.

We had a hospital.

Every father and mother had to

work, so we had to do something

with the children, so we gave

them a normal school.

And I was lucky.

I was a good organizer.

That way I got the job of being

the principal of a school.

This was all part of the

make-believe that

Westerbork was

not bad, and the next camp

would be another Westerbork.

And I would say 90% of the

people in Westerbork

believed that.

[speaking Dutch]

I remember we went

through woods to the camp.

[Ina] The trees don't

look too old at all.

[Jack] They don't look as

old as I am.

[speaking Dutch]

Where was the Boulevard

des Miseres?

That was the sports arena.

[Jack] That's where I won my

1,500 meters.

[Ina] You won, huh?

[Jack] No.

-[laughs]

-[Ina] Strange.

[Jack] Strange.

[Ina] Yeah.

Oh, yeah, there we were.

How is it possible that we

really were there?

[Ina] He won my heart by sheer

persistence, I would say.

[Jack]

We started to fall in love.

I felt that right away.

We couldn't see each other too

much in the barracks itself.

I think we really met always

walking.

[Ina] We were holding hands

or arms around each other,

and there was a certain amount

of necking and, you know,

whenever that was possible.

But that's about the extent of

the lovey-dovey parts.

-[Jack speaks indistinctly]

-[Ina] Yeah.

-I can do that more.

-Yeah, yeah.

[Ina] We tried to keep it

secret.

I didn't want my parents to

know.

My father never approved

of my boyfriends,

and I knew he would certainly

not approve of this.

And I certainly didn't want

to do any offensive things

toward Manja.

[speaking Hebrew]

I really liked Manja.

She was a very nice woman.

I visited Manja once and

asked her.

'Why did you marry Jaap

anyway?

She said, "I will tell you

the truth.

I really loved your father.

And I didn't want

to disappoint him.

I couldn't leave Jaap

in this difficult time.

[Jack] The moment it became

really serious and people told

Manja about it, Manja said,

"it mustn't go on.

I don't want you to have a

relationship."

She would forbid Jaap

to see me, and that's how the

letter writing started.

[typewriter keys clacking]

[Jack] "Dear sweetheart,

just a few words

in great haste.. .

You are in bed.

I'm in my office, and the worst

is that Manja is in her bed

watching your bed with 'argus'

eyes.

If there's anything wrong

in our relationship,

it is that you are afraid

that due to my unfortunate

marriage with Manja,

I was driven into the arms of

the very first girl I saw

was available.

Don't be afraid of

this, please, because

I want to call you my

wife since I feel more of a

similarity in character

with you

in a few weeks than in the

seven years that

I've known Manja.

The first whistle is now

blowing.

So if I stop now, I will be

asleep by the second whistle.

Sleep sweetly and well.

Much, much love, Jaap."

[Ina] I always told him that I

had this boyfriend since I was

12 years old that I was crazy

about who had been also caught

in a raid before the

deportation started,

in a door to door raid in '42.

I had no idea, of course,

if he would or not come back,

although my hopes and my

thoughts were, "Well,

if anybody makes it,

a young guy will make it."

And I always told Jaap, "If he

comes back and you come back,

and put the two in front

of me, I don't know what

I'm going to do.

I have to choose."

And in my mind, I always thought

the first thing to do is to

choose Rudi.

[Jack] She told me

many things about him.

And she also told me that, "As

long as I don't know where he

is, if he comes back, he's my

first choice," not knowing that

he had died already a long time

ago, because he died shortly

after he was taken to Auschwitz.

[Ina] The one thing that I

really regret is that when in

1941, best friends of Rudi's

parents were leaving Holland to

go to America, and they were

very fond of Rudi, and they

asked his parents could they

please take him along.

But we were so against it,

of course.

He didn't want to leave me.

I didn't want to leave him.

He just fought it and said,

"No, can't do it."

And, of course, if I'd done

it, he would have gone to the

states and probably would have

survived.

I really think about him often.

He was actually such a large

part of my teenage years.

So...

It stirs emotions always.

Actually the same as my brother.

[sniffles]

I just... use these two people

for everybody else.

[Jack] To tell you about the

Holocaust is very difficult

because I don't understand it.

If I don't understand it,

how can your wonderful

teachers who

are teaching the Holocaust

make you understand it?

We were very lucky.

You know why I was lucky?

We went to a concentration camp.

We did not go to an

extermination camp.

And when I look at children, I

always can cry, 'cause then

I remember my children in

Westerbork, children like you

who we gave a wonderful

education, and every week a

train left

Westerbork, Auschwitz.

Auschwitz, Westerbork.

And the children did not know.

They were sure they were going

to another camp,

and they all were killed.

[dog barks]

[Ina] They needed

every week 2,000 people

to be sent to the east.

And they didn't really care who

they were as long as they had

2,000 bodies to go.

So every Tuesday morning,

a train left at 6:00.

The main purpose of everybody's

life in Westerbork was to stay

out of next Tuesday's transport.

[Jack] You lived only two

days Tuesday and Wednesday.

On Thursday,

you started to tremble.

On Friday, you were told you

have to leave on Tuesday.

On Saturday, you tried

to get out of it.

On Sunday, you were told you

can't get out of it, and on

Monday, you start to pack.

Oh, you packed a lot of

underwear, a lot of good

clothes, a lot of ties.

Yes, you would go to

a labor camp.

[Ina] And on Monday night

at midnight, they would come in

and

read the list in every barrack,

people who had to go.

[woman] It was usually in the

middle of the night.

And the minute people's

names were called, there

was screaming and crying.

It was all in alphabetical

order, so if your name was

skipped, the relief , the relief

that people felt because they

could stay one week longer.

[Jack] I will never

forget one Monday night,

suddenly my name...

Polak, Jacob.

[Jack] ..."Polak, Jacob."

I said, "oh, my God."

And then they gave

another date, birthdate.

I know the man who had

my same name but only

had another birthday.

[Ina] The German Jews,

they ran all this.

The camp commander would only

come as the train was leaving

practically to take a walk,

but these people ran it.

And some of them, it's an awful

thing to say, but some of them

behaved as bad as if they

were the Nazis, really.

[Jack] Many times, they needed

me to help people to put them

in the cattle cars.

The young people, you said,

"goodbye," and,

"we will see you

again," and, "I hope you don't

have to work too hard."

And you see old people, and I

brought people of 70, 80, and

90 to the cattle car.

"My God, what are the Germans

going to do with people of 90

years and over?"

When my parents

were on the list,

we didn't know what was

going to happen to them.

The only thing I was afraid of

for them was they had to work

too hard.

They had their best clothes on.

I said to my father, "The shoes

aren't strong enough.

You're going to a labor camp.

Why don't you take my shoes?"

I brought them to the train, and

I put them in the cattle car

like I put everybody in the

cattle car.

And still, I did not

have that feeling

"this is it. Goodbye."

I had no knowledge at all that

they were going to be killed.

My father and mother were

gassed in Sobibor.

[hissing]

[train whistle blows]

[Ina] Remarkably,

the cabaret would be

always Tuesday nights.

["die Westerbork serenade"

plays]

It wasn't so easy to get in.

You had to have connections.

There were some people that

said, "I would never go there."

Here, we're in this camp,

and we want entertainment,

and it's all done for the

indulgence of the Germans.

The commandant just loved it,

and I think it kept these

people,

for a long time,

in the camps.

Of course, in the end, no more

cabaret and no more people.

[violins play]

[young Jack] "Friday,

December 3, 1943. This

afternoon, I enjoyed

listening to Beethoven's

' Kreutzer Sonata,' played by

Dr. Weiss and Pollack.

So very beautiful.

My thoughts were, as always but

especially when I hear music,

with you.

I want to write and let you

know how much,

in the very short

period of time that I've known

you, I love you.

I feel when I'm with you, and

crazily enough, when I'm not

with you, a sense of peace that

I've never really known with

any other girl.

I have the feeling that we

completely understand each

other even when we

don't speak word.

Know above all that in my mind,

I hold a vision of an ideal

marriage in which man and wife

share a mutual goal,

in which each complements and

supports the other.

We must often go and

hear good music.

We must go and see

good theater.

And in exactly this way, grow

closer to each other.

Good night, sweet girl of mine.

Many, many kisses, Jaap."

[Ina] I used my sister,

Josette, as the messenger of

love.

She would hand my letters to

Jaap and vice versa.

[train rumbles]

[Jack speaking Dutch]

Here was a school.

[Ina speaking Dutch]

If you were Jewish kids in 1942,

You would have been here,

at this school.

And he would have been

your principle.

I was the head of school

here, in Westerbork.

63 years ago.

What did you teach there?

We had a fantastic school.

And fantastic

teachers, professors.

Every week kids and more

kids came...

and only because they

were Jewish.

They has the Jewish star.

Only Jewish kids were picked up.

I can talk about numbers and

numbers of the war.

But if I think about the

one and a half million

kids that were killed.

It was terrible.

-You have to realize how

lucky you are.

-Yeah.

Because you live in

a normal world,

not completely

normal, actually

but you can have a lot of fun.

You an eat...

...you can do the normal

things in life.

All the kids that went to

school here...

...could never do

what you can do.

Have you all read

'The Diary of Anne Frank'?

'Anne Frank' is the second most

read book in the world.

I can tell you all,

'Anne Frank' can be a

guideline in your life.

How old are you?

I'm now 93.

[Jack] I feel young again

to be able to talk to

young children.

[speaking Dutch]

-Are you Jewish?

-Yes.

See kids, this gentleman is

a real Jew.

Can you see a

difference between him and me?

No?

There's no

difference between us.

This is one thing I always

tell kids.

Never, never discriminate.

There is no difference

between a Jew and a non-Jew.

There is no difference

between a black and a white man.

We're all born the same way,

and we all die the same way.

To get to a better world,

all together we have

to find peace and make peace.

It's very difficult in a

world where there's so much war.

I've said enough, okay?

[young Jack] "My dear, dear

Inaka, considering the

circumstances,

Manja will give us a hard time.

And we won't be able to take

walks, perhaps having little or

no chance for close contact.

You must not let this

discourage you.

We must find strength in the

knowledge that there is someone

here who makes life worth

living.

Maybe you can adapt a piece of

my philosophy in life... that,

in everything, even in the

gloomiest things, you must look

for the sunny side.

And even if you can't find any

sunshine,

you must look into the

future in which, ultimately for

both of us, happiness lies."

[Ina] What probably kept me

going from his letters is his

wisdom because of being

10 years older and

being much more

experienced in life than I was,

and his nature, his optimistic,

upbeat nature which always tried

to lift me up if I was down.

Jaap's presence and his feelings

for me was a big help to me.

[Jack] "The day before the

transport is always somewhat

nerve-racking.

I must admit that this is

slowly beginning to get

to me, Ina.

Mostly because you never

know what to expect from

one day to the next."

"Dear Inaka,

it's now 11:00 a.m.

And after this unnerving

transport with my

mother-in-law.

She was very strong, and so

were Manja and her sister.

I must tell you very frankly

that it was as bad for me as

when other loved ones

of mine went.

[train whistle blows]

Every departure gets us down.

But now this transport is over,

and as things are,

we must go on.

You must look at it in the same

way I look at our imminent

departure...

that if 100,000 Jews from

the Netherlands have already

had to bear this,

then why not us?

Especially since we're young...

if I can include myself

with the bald head.

I really hope that now you

can show me what a strong

woman you can be.

I think we should slowly ready

our belongings as,

in any event,

we will have to move.

Much love, Jaap."

[Betty] My husband, caught by

the Germans.

I remember when they came to

take us.

I kicked his revolver

under a chair.

And they found his revolver,

of course.

And that is already enough

to kill someone.

I could hear in another room

the way he was interrogated.

There's a lot of torture and

a lot of shouting.

The last words Phillip and I

have spoken together were just

when we were arrested.

The wardens took care that we

could write, on a very small

piece of paper with a terrible

pencil, some words as a parting.

He wrote, "You always have been

my best comrade at my side."

And that's what I cherish.

[young Jack] "February, 12,

1944.

Sweet darling, this morning,

we received our notice that

we will be transported to

another camp,

so we immediately

started to pack.

It's now the evening before my

departure,

which despite everything, still

came fairly unexpectedly.

All I want to say is that my

departure from here makes me

very sad, and it's only

for one reason.

I hope that you

will soon follow me.

I cannot tell you how

terribly I feel to leave

you in this way,

but nothing can be done.

Dearest Inaka, this is not just

a departure letter, only a

wish for a very, very speedy

coming-together for us.

Embraces and love, Jaap."

[singing in Hebrew]

[Jack] One moment.

This, translated in english,

"Remember what Amalek did to

you when you went out of Egypt."

But you can translate that in

today's life.

Remember what Hitler did to us

when we left Holland.

What can you tell your children?

Many times, Ina's told me,

"Don't say too much to them

because you'll frighten them."

But on the other hand, if

Holocaust survivors don't talk

to their children, then the

children ask themselves,

"what is behind their silence?"

[speaking Hebrew]

You shall be not as the

important men in Jewish life,

as the important women

in Jewish life.

[Ina] See, there we go.

It's the Star of David.

Margrit, did you talk to

Sofie about what her

grandparents went through?

Or not yet?

I haven't really discussed

the war so much with Sofie,

but we're easing her into it.

[Ina] Sofie's a very, very

sensitive child.

I think it maybe give her

nightmares or something...

Like it did you.

Which, only, I didn't know it.

She told me that

a few years ago.

I spent a lot of my childhood

trying to figure out escape

routes from our house.

There were a million hiding

places.

And I still dream about the

Nazis.

[Ina] I think Margrit imagined

a lot and dreamt about almost,

like, me being there.

[sighs]

Yep.

She had kind of put herself in

my place to the extent that when

she was in college, like all the

kids, she had eaten a lot of

starches and stuff, and she had

gained at least 10 pounds.

I said, "You know, Margrit?

Eat a little less.

Next vacation, when you come

home, you know, lose some."

And she did...

And she did, and she did, and

she did till she became

anorexic.

I was an early case.

[Ina] Then it lasted just

about the exact same time...

year and a half or almost three

years that I was in camp.

And in the end, I realized she's

the exact same age also.

[train rumbles]

[Jack] The odds of going to

Bergen-Belsen instead of to

Auschwitz were 9 to 1.

90,000 people left from

Westerbork to Auschwitz.

Only 10,000 left to other camps.

So the odds were unbelievable

Ina and I came together in

Bergen-Belsen again.

[Ina] When we arrived

at the station, there was

a man whom I knew.

And I asked him, you know, very

excitedly, "how is it and what

is this camp like and how are

the people and how's the food?"

And all he did was, you know,

calm me down, "it's okay.

It's okay. It's not so bad."

[young Jack] "May 20, 1944.

Inaka, my darling, now that you

are here, it is as if I found

peace of mind again.

Everything here is much more

difficult than in Westerbork.

You will find that a love life

is completely nonexistent.

For the moment, I am glad

enough just to be a very close

friend of yours.

It is not my intention to go

through life alone.

And with Manja, it will never

work.

I'm doing nasty work, digging

under the supervision of the

SS from 6:00 in the morning

till 6:00 in the evening.

I'm dead tired but in good

health...

Though that won't last long.

Try to be strong, Ina.

It won't be easy."

[young Ina] "Dearest Jaap, a

first bit of news from here.

A complete nightmare.

Last night with Josette in one

bed, on a board without a

mattress.

The sanitation is indescribable

I suspect you will be going to

a disinfection bath one of

these days.

You will pass close to our

fence, and that will be a real

opportunity for us to talk for

a moment."

[Betty Knoop] I think of the

people sitting at night,

taking off their clothes and...

Trying to kill the lice.

[Ina] I just could

not stand it.

There was no way that you could

keep anything clean.

No women that I know of got

their periods during the time

that they were incarcerated.

When we went to Westerbork,

it never came.

Was in Bergen-Belsen,

it never came.

What the reason is,

nobody seems to know.

Nature, somebody up there taking

care of us, because it would

have been a terrible,

terrible situation.

Impossible.

[Jack] The condition in

Bergen-Belsen became from

bad to worse.

First of all, the eating

conditions became terrible.

[Ina] We would get big,

big kegs of soup.

It was always turnip soup.

[Jack] The Orthodox Jews, they

refused to eat the soup because

sometimes, in the soup,

was a piece of horse meat.

Now, to get a horse meat, you

have to be unbelievably lucky.

Sometimes people would,

"I got it, I got it."

[Ina] There were a lot of

fights, and it was very often

about food.

[Jack] The moment people died,

people would grab whatever they

had, the blanket or the

pillow.

Unless , of course,

he had family.

But people were sometimes alone,

and then people would grab as

fast as possible what

you could get.

[young Jack] "My dear

little lady, they asked me

at my table if I'

keeping a diary, and everybody

asked me to write in it that

they are hungry.

I just tried to eat, but after

two bites, I was so nauseous,

I had to throw away a whole

camp bowl full of food,

complete, big food."

[young Ina] "Jaap, dear, I share

your hunger problems.

We're old and decrepit

and so hungry that my

sense of humor is dying."

[Ina] they separated

the people from the

diamond industry

from the others, and they gave

us our own barrack.

It was the only group of people

that didn't work, so called,

to save their hands.

And once, in the middle of the

night, this guy opened the door.

Everybody was sleeping.

"Achtung!"

You know, "pay attention!

I want Mr. so-and-so and

so-and-so," and those were all

the diamond manufacturers, "to

come to the office, and we'll

have to discuss setting up a

diamond industry."

And then he yelled,

"Can anybody take

German shorthand?"

And I and another woman

both went, and we had

to take minutes.

I knew German shorthand,

but I had never taken

minutes.

But one of my father's friends

calmed me down and said,

"I'll sit next to you,

and I'll tell you what

you should write down."

I would say that diamonds

actually saved our lives.

Did you take anything with

you in the camps?

'cause you gave me a broach.

You told me you had it

in the camps with you

when you gave it to me.

And I remember, like, I would

keep it, you know,

and then I'd say, "Oh, I can't

have that near me."

So I'd put it, lock it away, and

then I'd take it out again.

[Ina] I guess I took a pin

through the camps.

Didn't know what was gonna

happen in the camps, you know.

I took my rollers through the

camps, too, and used them.

We didn't know what was

happening in the camps.

Really? You curled your hair?

Well, I wore a

pageboy always.

So, every night, I put four

of those things in my hair.

The whole time?

[Ina] The whole time,

I had a pageboy.

Right.

[Ina] And you could never

wash your hair,

so it might as well fall nice.

Plus, you had a boyfriend.

[Ina] Plus, I had a

boyfriend.

Yeah, well, I don't know.

I was so used to it.

And I kept them,

and I used them.

You know, I thought

your obsession with

your hair came later.

No, no, no, no, no.

That's from way back, way back.

Huh.

[siren blares]

[young Jack] "Sweet darling,

just a few words by flashlight.

There are now 220 people

in our barrack.

So for us,

it means being more careful.

You and I might have to see

somewhat less of each other in

the near future.

Last night, Manja saw us taking

a walk, but she made only one

sarcastic remark.

'nice weather for a walk,'

she said.

But my dear Inaka, know well

that for Jaap, there is only on

'number one.'

do you believe me, Inaka?

I really hope so."

[Ina] I think I was

number one in his heart,

but in his daily life,

he had to

consider her first.

Manja was sometimes very nice

and didn't care, especially when

she had her boyfriend,

the doctor.

That helped a lot.

So, then, you know, she

had her own concerns, and

she left us alone.

[young Jack] "My dearest

little lady, I had a

long talk with Manja.

This morning, two parties

informed her where and when we

are meeting each other.

I could really kill these

stupid and tactless women.

In fact, her, too.

People talked, "Jaap Polak

and Ina Soep, they're an item.

They're together."

When it looked in the

eyes of others like she was a

jilted wife, then... she didn't

behave so nicely.

And so all the time, it was, you

know, "She's in a good mood,

she's not in a good mood.

I can see you,

I cannot see you."

I had to apologize

to Ina that I still,

to the outside world,

looked like the loving

husband of Manja.

[young Jack] "My sweetest

darling,

you asked me if I'm

angry at you for wanting

to be so daring.

You don't know how terrible

I felt this afternoon

when I pushed you away.

And I understand completely

if you tell me you cried

after what happened.

You asked me a few days

ago how I would take it

if your love for

someone else turned out to be

stronger than it is for me.

We have to know that

these risks do exist

because of Rudi.

I will take it as a man,

and you should never

make an eventual

decision just to avoid

bringing me pain.

I'm writing with a pencil stub.

One good thing is that since

you've become secretary,

we will have no lack

of paper and pencils.

Darling, try to steal a pencil

for me somewhere."

I laughed a little about it.

What is this, love letters

between each other?

He was so in love with

Ina it was...

I don't know, extraordinary.

That also kept them alive

because they had each other.

They lived on it.

[young Jack] "My dearest Inaka,

you cannot imagine how

great it is for me

after such a long day

to have the knowledge

that you are here,

you think of me, you love me,

and at the end of the day,

I can see you, even,

if only for a short time.

It gives me the courage

I need to carry on.

We will come through this,

dearest Inaka.

And then we can say that

our will to survive was

not in vain.

Many, many

good night kisses."

[young Ina] "Dearest Jaap, just

a sign of life from this

camp where they

leave us alone to rot like

animals.

The pessimists say that

spotted typhus is breaking out

in all the camps.

[young Jack] "Remember, darling,

be smart and don't get sick.

I would have to violate all

strict rules and set foot in

barrack 17."

[young Ina] "It's getting more

difficult to keep in contact.

But maybe today, I will

somehow find a way."

[young Jack] "My Inaka, I'm not

at all satisfied with our mail

service since I've had a letter

waiting for you already since

2:00 p.m.

Try to be here when

the commander comes

on duty but make

sure to avoid Manja when she

leaves the roll call square.

She's positively capable of

telling your papa, and I think

you, too, want to avoid that.

So, my darling, I hope as you

finish reading these few words,

you will be in Morpheus' arms,

though I would prefer

to be in his place."

[Ina] And I had one of my

camp sicknesses,

typhoid attacks.

It must have been at

least three, four times

while I was there.

You can't eat.

You have a very high fever.

You're nauseous, and you can

absolutely not eat anything.

And it may last for three,

four days.

And then one morning,

you'd wake up, it was gone.

And, of course,

then you were ravenous.

And my sister had saved

all my bread.

We had tiny, little lockers.

And she had saved the bread for

that day she knew was coming.

And when she went to get it,

it was gone.

Somebody had stolen it.

It was not just from one day.

It was like at least three days.

So there was nothing for me.

And she went around and asked if

they could just spare a little

bit of their portion, and the

first one she went to was Manja,

who right away, said,

"Yes," and gave a good

piece of her bread for me.

So that was one of the nicer

things that happened.

[Jack] Beautiful cards.

Who wrote them?

Try the chair.

Ohh.

Feels good.

[singing in Hebrew]

[indistinct conversations]

[Ina] Pay attention.

It's the Mark of David.

It's the Star of David.

It's a lovely Star of David.

[singing in Hebrew]

What happened while you

were in the camps at

Passover?

[Ina] Well,

we tried to do it

as good as we could.

You didn't have books.

[Ina] Did anybody have a

Haggadah in camp, in our camp?

[Jack] In the camp, I think

there must be --

don't forget, to the

concentration camp, we took all

our possessions along.

[Ina] Yeah, but nobody

traveled with the Haggadah.

[Jack] Oh, sure, we had a

Dutch Haggadah.

[Ina] Yeah?

[Jack] Sure, they had a Dutch

Haggadah.

[Ina] We tried to put the

symbols like a seder dish.

Whatever there was.

And I had a darning egg.

Remember, in the olden days, we

used to darn our socks?

Not anymore.

And I had it with me.

So that was the egg,

a wooden egg.

So, that's how we tried to keep

our sanity, I guess.

[young Jack] "My dearest

sweetheart, this old man of

yours is getting older.

I had a very disturbing night.

I didn't close my eyes at all

because of the lice.

Also mainly because I

itched all over, which

is a side effect

of my jaundice.

I'm now seeing everything

pessimistically.

Let us hope that all these

difficulties, which we will no

doubt have to face in

many forms, will be

overcome by our love."

[young Ina] "My always-dearest

love, sweetheart, in God's

name, take

care of yourself so I don't

have to worry about you.

I want to see you again

in good health.

My thoughts are

always with you.

Kisses, Ina."

[Jack] One day,

I exchanged a piece of clothes

for a piece of bread.

I said I want to keep this

bread for the last emergency

if I really need it.

And believe me, you needed a

tremendous amount of willpower

to keep a piece of bread

and not eat it.

And then my sister got very

sick and knew I had a piece of

bread and asked me for

the piece of bread.

And I said no to her.

[clears throat]

Maybe it would've helped.

I don't think so.

Another good friend of mine, his

son got very sick and asked me

for the piece of bread.

And I said no.

And that good friend of mine, he

made it, and the son made it,

and after the war, he didn't

want to talk to me...

For one year.

After one year, he called me.

[clears throat]

And we were talking it out.

And he more or less said,

"Now after one year,

although I blamed you at

that time so terribly

for not doing it,

I still forgive you for that."

[voice breaking] It was

emotional.

[Ina] I had a terrible,

terrible toothache.

And I was allowed to

go into the adjacent

camp, which was the

women's camp, huge women's

camp, only women.

Most of them had come from

Auschwitz.

It was also the camp where

anne frank was.

The women all looked terrible.

They were all in striped

uniforms from Auschwitz, which,

of course, we didn't have.

And I saw the woman dentist.

She was a Polish woman.

And she had, like, a makeshift

dental office there.

So people, I don't think

the Germans kind of set that up,

but people tried themselves to

help as much as possible.

They had these huge carts,

but instead of horses,

they had people

pulling the carts.

And they were all filled up

with dead bodies.

They were barely

bodies anymore.

And I guess they were pulling

them to the crematoria.

And I saw heaps of them lying,

you know, by the roadway,

and I came back,

and I was just...

To our part, and I was just

devastated.

[Betty Knoop] How was it

possible that our lives were

taken away like this?

How was it possible that the

whole world really stood by and

really didn't care?

I know 11 million people

were killed, not counting

the soldiers.

But nobody cared.

I am not talking about

individual people.

I'm talking now about countries

and governments.

[Jack] 60 million people died

in the second world war because

we were not able to stop

a crazy man.

They knew in England,

Churchill knew, and the

Pope knew.

They all knew what

was happening in Germany.

I thought all these

people would die.

I never thought anyone would

come back.

[young Jack] "My dear little

lady, I think that in

my future life, if

I make it, I will be able to

value even the smallest things.

What do you think about

our being together

in a quiet little

house in the winter by a hearth

after a delicious meal?

I almost can't imagine that

there will ever be such a

happiness in store for us.

So, sweet child, I'm going back

to my barbed wire.

These are only dreams

of the future."

[young Ina] "My sweet darling,

yesterday we had a crazy and

emotion-filled day.

First uncle han's funeral,

how terribly shameful it was

without a casket,

with rough kapos throwing the

body on the cart.

I'm worried about my father.

He has such a hard time.

Why is it all taking

so very long?

And there are so

many more victims.

Soon there will

be nothing left.

Now, my darling, I am too

depressed for anything nicer.

Never say die.

Ina."

You didn't talk about it much

when we were little.

[Ina] Nobody talked about

anything.

I'm not accusing.

It's not a ...

but I had to imagine from the

little tiny bits and pieces I

could put together what it must

have been 'cause until I got the

courage to ask dad about it.

[Ina] But, see, we

didn't talk about it not

because we couldn't.

Because nobody did

and nobody asked.

What about with your mother?

My mother did not

like to talk about it

because she lost her son.

No, it was too

emotional for her.

Although I did... did I tell

you I once saw her talking to

Benno on the photograph?

Really?

I'm sorry.

See, that's it.

My mother was, I mean, I don't

usually like to show emotions,

but she was even much

worse or better at it.

She never, never showed much

emotion at all, ever.

So, that's... so she never

talked about it.

We never talked about it.

[Ina] What I remember of my

father, his biggest, biggest

sorrow was

the loss of my brother.

When they got notice that he

died, he felt all of a sudden

how powerless he was

that he could not even

protect his own child.

It was the tragedy of his life.

My father wrote a poem after my

brother died.

"Our man, Benno."

[speaking Dutch]

So that's it.

Defeated we are sitting down,

After this, God's

strongest blow.

We all loved you so tenderly

And weep at your

grave, unknown to us.

A blessing you were in our life;

Your goodness shown above all.

As human in such high repute,

As Jew, a faithful subject.

For the Netherlands you fought,

And now you had to perish

in this way.

That must be God's decree

How else to understand?

In the arms of the Supreme

Being,

You can only rejoice.

That your lovely soul, so

pure, may rest

Til we come close to you again.

That's it.

It's very difficult not to

feel guilty that you survived,

and you also have a feeling

you never did enough to

save other people.

Phillip is here in this very

simple grave.

Resistant workers, people who

have lost their lives against

the Germans fighting them.

I get emotional when

I see the grave.

So many people, my parents, my

sister, they were,

they perished in flames.

We don't even know where their

ashes went.

All the other family, there are

no graves to visit.

[shofar blows]

I had, all of a sudden,

this thought that it would be a

good idea to exchange our

letters back to each other so

that what I had written would be

in my hands and what Jack had

written would be in his.

And my reasoning was that

we had no idea what was

going to happen to us.

Would we stay there together?

Would we be liberated together?

Would he be sent away?

Would I be sent away?

Would one of us die?

She didn't want to have

strangers see her love letters,

which had a lot of sense, and

after the war, we hoped when we

would make it, we can give them

to each other.

[young Ina] "My dearest love...

[speaks Dutch]

When you depart, quietly say

'goodbye.'

Yes, my Jaap.

Now it is actually coming.

Exactly when,

we don't know yet.

This morning I found my

last two house lice

dead in my sweater.

I can't tell you how lucky I

feel to be rid of them.

With this letter, my dear, I'm

also thinking so much about our

coming home.

Where, when will we find each

other again, if at all?

We may be in reality returning

to the Netherlands.

However, we may find it easier

to go to America.

If I go there with my family,

how will our feelings

withstand this distance?

Above all, what will we do if

you're not liberated

at the same time as we are?

Oh, my young man,

everything is so vague."

[young Jack] "My always

dearest Inaka,

it is indeed not out of

the question that you

will go to America.

And, Inaka, if you do end

up there, I'm beginning

to despair.

I will be walking

around Amsterdam with

the sense that my

one and only love lives in

New York.

And even though you wouldn't

forget about me,

I have an idea that

you will meet men who

are more interesting,

who are better company,

more charming than I am."

[young Ina] "April 7, 1945.

My dearest Jaap...

Last night at 8:00 p.m. We were

called for transport and had to

be ready in two hours.

But we are still here.

I fervently hope that

I will see your

darling mug once more

before we leave.

I don't want to say 'goodbye'

again to you.

Just 'see you soon.'

a thousand kisses, Ina."

[Ina ] I write at least three

or four letters.

This is the last letter.

It was always uncertainty till

the last minute.

[young Jack] "What we

went through after our

transport out of

Bergen-Belsen cannot be

described.

Our whole transport suffered

a very bad spot of typhus

epidemic after we left.

I, myself, was on the verge of

death for two days,

but pulled through.

Same with Manja."

[Jack] I mostly recall digging

graves, schlepping the dead

bodies from the cattle car into

the grave outside the cars.

I remember on April 23, 1945,

seeing Russian uniforms,

and I said, "This is it."

I went with a group of

people to get food.

Then I felt suddenly very weak.

Then I got into a coma.

I came out of the coma on

April 25.

All I know is in two days my

weight was down to 70 pounds.

[chanting in Hebrew]

[Jack] Whenever, really,

I say that way,

I think about

the people I buried.

Prayers are quite difficult for

me basically because how many

times can you say how great God

is and then have to think about

all the horrible things

that happened to my parents

and to my whole family?

And think on the other hand,

I owe God that he let me

survive the holocaust.

[train whistle blows]

[Ina] We fInally broke into

the front line, and we couldn't

go any further.

And all of a sudden, I see

these big, burly tank guys

coming over the hill in their

uniforms, their helmets.

They had no idea who we were.

They were totally

flabbergasted.

They had no idea what a

concentration camp was.

They had never heard of it.

And when they smiled, they all

had these fabulous white,

straight teeth and some crazy

thought came in my mind, and I

thought, "Well, they must have

all seen the same orthodontist."

And they right away took over.

And as I was being lifted

by these burly Americans

on the truck,

the bottom of

my rucksack fell out.

And then I vividly

remember me looking at

the letters and thinking,

"How can I take them?"

And I left them.

The usual pictures.

Yeah.

Filled with emotion.

Look at that.

[Ina speaking Dutch]

Does my hair look alright?

Yeah.

I'm Jack Polak.

I'm a survivor of Westerbork

and concentration camp

Bergen-Belsen and been

liberated by the

Russian armies.

I'm accompanied with my

wife Ina who was with me

in the camps and

with whom I'm going to

celebrate this weekend

our 60th anniversary.

[applause]

I will just read to you

from theuniversal

declaration of human

rights, articles 18 and 19.

"Everyone has the right to

freedom of thought, conscience,

and religion.

This right includes freedom to

change his religion or belief,

and freedom, either alone or in

community with others and in

public or private, to manifest

his religion or belief in

teaching, practice, worship,

and observance."

Thank you, Mr. Polak, and,

Mr. and Mrs. Polak, all the very

best for this very special

anniversary next week.

[Jack] Thank you.

Wonderful.

Unbelievable event...

To stand in the united nations

and thinking about all the

people who didn't make it.

[voice breaking] Also the fact

that I am alive and am able to

give testimony to it.

[up-tempo calliope music plays]

[narrator] The day is one of

thanksgiving the world over.

In Holland,

there is real cause to cheer.

The capitulation of Germany

has literally saved thousands

from death by starvation.

Their Canadian liberators

are feted,

and ceremonies of

thanks are held for

deliverance.

[Betty] The war had ended,

and everybody tried to

find out who has survived.

I went to the red cross.

I put advertisements in papers.

[church bell tolling]

[Ina] I had no idea that Jaap

was alive,

and when I was back

in Holland, I had no idea if

I would see him again.

And he didn't know what had

happened to my train.

[Jack] The meeting point was

Amsterdam.

I had given her the

name of my sister

Betty,

who I knew was underground.

I didn't know if she

was still alive.

But basically for two months,

Ina had no knowledge

that I had made it.

[cheering]

[Betty] One day I heard

transportshad arrived in the

south of the Netherlands.

But it was still very

difficult to travel.

So I lent a uniform of a nurse.

I had a niece who was a nurse.

I said, "If I go as a nurse,

nothing can happen."

And I hitchhiked with a big

American truck, and we were on

a road to enter hoeven when we

were stopped because a terrible

accident had passed, and they

saw there was a nurse there.

"Please come along immediately."

And I don't know anything about

nursing, never.

So I came there, and I said,

"this is too serious.

Immediately let doctors come.

I shouldn't touch those.

I shouldn't touch those."

And off I went with the truck.

They let me in, and I saw a

long line of skeletons.

And I looked and I looked, and I

couldn't recognize anyone.

But someone was calling my name.

"Betty, it's you. Betty."

And I looked,

and I saw my brother.

And I saw a nephew.

And I hardly dared

to embrace them.

I was afraid they

would crack down.

But that's where we met.

[young Jack] "My dearest

Inaka...

What do you say about my luck?

My sister Betty just came

to visit me.

She will hand you this little

letter tomorrow.

She will tell you everything.

How happy I was to hear

that all of you were alive,

you can well imagine.

Before anything else,

Ina, everything is

still as it was before.

I hope it is with you, too.

I hope that we will soon talk

about everything in peace.

How I long for that at last.

In my thoughts, I embrace

you and kiss you. Jaap."

[young Ina] "My dearest Jaap,

what a surprise this morning

the beautiful roses

and fine letter.

I can find no words to express

how happy I am that you are at

reachable distance from me.

I was beginning to panic that I

still hadn't heard anything as

information about several other

began to trickle in.

I'm very excited and

nervous and almost can't

wait to see you in

real life and be able

to embrace you.

We all feel so terribly sad

about the dreadful numbers

of those who died.

But then I am thankful

that you pulled through."

[Jack] And I would see myself

walking from the streetcar to

that house where Ina was.

[Ina] We stood in front of

the window waiting for him to

come,

and here comes this man in the

most God-awful coat, which he

had gotten from the red cross.

I had to breathe [gasps]

Like this, and I thought, "Oh,

such a shabby old man.

Nothing for Ina."

But he looked so dreadful.

He was so thin, and

he looked so pale.

[Jack speaking Dutch]

[Ina speaking Dutch]

[laughing]

[Jack speaks Dutch]

[Ina laughs]

May I introduce myself?

You make me cry,

you make me cry.

[Ina] She's still crying

from 60 years ago.

And we stood there and saw you

coming, and we thought you

looked about as old then when

you were 32 or, yeah as

-you look today.

-That was the

beginning of my life.

Yeah, well, it was.

[Jack] It was. Yeah.

[Ina] And now it's 60 years

later a little more

60 1/2 years later.

-And now it's the end

of my life.

-No, come on.

We can all say that.

[Jack] Yeah, I know, I know.

And then he had to

get a divorce.

[Jack] The same Rabbi who did

our wedding was a friend of

mine,did get Jewish

divorce.

[Ina] The wife is supposed

to spit on the husband?

[Jack] What?

[Ina]

Who is supposed to spit?

[Jack] Uh, I think... people

told us... Manja always told

us... "That is okay, but I'm not

going to spit."

I said, "Manja, but you have to

be there while the get is

written by the Rabbi."

She says,

"How long does it take?"

"I'll ask him to do it fast."

[Ina] I had always claimed

that I would never marry an

accountant because they're the

dullest people in the world.

So here I ended up with a man

who was 10 years older, bald,

and an accountant.

[tea kettle whistling]

I like sugar better than

sweetener.

No.

I'll take the sugar

and the sweetener.

No, you'll get the sweetener.

Can I ask you when is the

first time you had sex?

[Ina] Oh, well,

like every good

Dutch Jewish girl,

and any good girl at that age,

the night we got married,

I mean, the real sex.

I mean, there was a lot going

on before, but, you know,

real, not till that.

It just wasn't done.

[Jack] I had to wait a long

time for it.

[both laugh]

[Ina] But there are always

a lot of substitute,

as you well know,

for young kids if they

really want to.

But he would,

once in a while,

when we had

the lights out already,

and he would come

back late from camp,

he would kind of

feel his way to the barrack and

would say good night.

Then he probably would kiss me

because it's pitch dark.

And now?

[Ina] Ask his cardiologist,

who gets such a kick

out of Jack.

Every time he's been sick,

he asks when he

can have sex again.

[Jack] Yeah.

[Ina] He was so stunned,

but he was so intrigued,

that now every time

he goes...

[Jack]

"Do you still have sex?"

So I say, "Yes."

He said he was very pleased.

[Ina] There's hope.

[both laugh]

[bell tolling]

[solemn mid-tempo music plays]

[young Jack]

"Thursday, October 12, 1944.

My dearest darling...

If we both deal with the

knowledge that these few days,

too, will pass, then the best

that could happen would be that

these few days will

improve our archives,

and in 26 years"...

[Jack]

..."when we are celebrating

our 25th wedding anniversary,

we will write and

perform the great view

about our lives.

Am I not an optimist?"

And I tell her that

she's still beautiful.

[glass clinking]

[Jack] Okay.

[Ina] "Being married to

Jack hasn't brought one

single dull moment yet.

[laughter]

He gave me 60 years of

happiness,

harmony, and

unconditional love.

It all started on 1/29/46, and

we lived happily ever after."

[applause]

[camera shutter clicks]

[camera shutter clicks]

[Ina] Condition.

[dog barking]

[Jack speaking indistinctly]

[Ina] In the studio,

and they have it prerecorded.

[Jack] Oh, yeah.

[Ina] You're so pretty.

You're so pretty.

I'll hang up...

[Jack] Let's get organized

now, okay?

I don't know how...

[speaking Dutch]

[Ina laughs]

[laughing]

[singing in German]

[big band music plays]