Tuesday, July 29, 2008
5 11 pm Lithuania time. I’m in Kovno, Kaunas. Took today to get to te old Jewish town. I walked trough roads of wooden houses with old chimneys and brick window sills. Small houses lined up in a row on mud roads with children playing on bikes outside. Run down, paint peeling, wood chipping, black from years exposed to the elements, old garage doors rusted with bolts and padlocks and old men wondering why and what my reasons are for taking photographs.
And then there are sweet old people talking to me in Lithuanian. We speak across an old photograph with scribbles on it. I show them a date, 1943 and the word ghetto. She gets it, says something and smiles. Points out through sign language that she has been around since 1945, after the war. Though broken signs and lots of pointing we get back to the ‘archives’. I find out where on the map Maraja rd is. There is a reason for everything. I walk away from the old couple with large hands and dust on their clothes.