If you have read the book “Schindler’s Jews” or seen the movie “Schindler’s List” directed by Stephen Spielberg, you would have heard of Schindler’s factory. Schindler managed to save many Jewish people towards the end of world war 2 by having then declared as essential workers in his factory – even though the factory was, for practical purposes, producing very little.
I wasn’t sure what to expect when visiting Schindler’s factory, but while it was a history of the factory and of Schindler’s work it was far more than that. It gave an introspective history of Krakow in World War 2, and especially of the Jewish people that were confined to the ghetto during the Nazi occupation of Poland. An enlightening and sobering visit.
We only visited the factory on our second visit to Krakow, but if you are in the city I would highly recommend that you take a visit to the factory to learn move of its history.
The windows are filled with portraits of survivors.
The main factory gates
You may have noticed the mile markers along Main Road in the deep south. There is one at the corner of Main/Steenberg road, another opposite the Old Bakery, and one in St James. Here is the original Lakeside marker.
According to the Muizenberg Historical Conservation Society, the original stones date back to around 1810. You may have also noticed (I didn’t) that there were two gaps in the sequence. Muizenberg and (I think) Kalk Bay.
Thanks to the Kalk Bay and St James Historical Society (and some cash from the City roads department), the gaps have been filled with brand new replica stones. This one is by the BP petrol station in Muizenberg. I have not managed to find the other new stone yet, but I will post a pic as soon as I do!
Visiting Auswitch was one of the most difficult and sobering experiences I have ever had. I could literally feel the weight of history and the events that happened there just on 70 years ago.
It is a place for thinking and reflection, and somewhere that all world leaders (especially ours) should visit to get an understanding of what suffering really is, and to see where their ideologies and actions can lead.
It is not the sort of place you can visit to enjoy the visit, but it is somewhere you visit to remember our history and to maybe, just maybe learn from it.
A reminder of the awfully discriminating past of South Africa, this bench,
along with its counterpart "Whites Only" now resides outside the Cape Town
High Court as a reminder of the past. Thank goodness that is behind us, I
sincerely hope that it is never repeated.
Giant steps are what you take,
walking on the moon
I hope my legs don’t break
walking on the moon (The Police)
It was forty years ago today, that Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin landed on the moon. Apollo 11, was the first lunar landing, and the 5th Apollo manned mission. Think of the progress we have made since then:
- satellite TV
- satellite phone
- space stations
- probes to Mars
- satellite mapping of the entire earth (think Google Earth)
Apollo 11Command Module
Landing Module (one that did not goto space because the real ones never came back!)
(pictures by me)