Q: And who decided who would go to the dispensary?
A: What do you mean?
Q: Who could be there.
A: You mean who could be there? I made the decisions, me. One soldier went with us to check everybody. Then you know we visited the blocks. And when the people came back from their work or there was an accident or simply something serious happened, then he stayed there straight away, you know. Then he made the decision, who would stay, not me, when I smelt something, then yes. And he said, "Who is there?" I said "Krauzova is laying here." And I said to him, "She has a high fever, she is almost burning up with fever" Then Toman should come with the stretcher but I said, "Tell the girls to come over here, and we will go with them to the dispensary and carry her with us." Well, well. That’s how it was, you know. There everyone was watching you, everyone. And it also happened to us, it happened a lot, that the bunks were full, four tiers, yea. And for instance, on top was a woman giving birth in great pain. So we had to carry the stretcher over our heads, and the girls put her on the stretcher from above. You know what it was like. They didn’t bother at all if someone fell down and died. They didn’t care. But I did, Miss. I knew, that, I was smart enough, and my mum said, "Be very careful, very careful. You know, if somebody dies because of you, then after the war, when you leave the camp, then you will not survive. People will kill you or put you in prison. The others later [unintelligible] same. "That is why I was so careful, you know."
Q: Again, tell me how did you live in the block? Did you have any room there?
A: No, I used to sleep on the field bed that was used for patients during treatments.
Q: And mother and granny and the others?
A: They lived in the block.
Q: But you said they all used to live in the dispensary.
A: No, no. They were in the dispensary when they took the others away from the camp to other camps.
Q: I see. So they only let you be there then.
A: Just at that time.
Q: They protected you probably.
A: Yea, yea, yea
Q: I see I misunderstood.
A: Well. In ”A” building maybe there , I don’t know, I don’t know. My sisters went there to have a look. I didn’t go there, I, I didn’t go there. I didn’t want to go there. (Crying) During communism it used to be a pioneers camp and then they made it into a pigsty. The pigs were there. Our girls were there, when they stayed in the blocks, where my mum used to be, that block is still there.(crying) I don’t know if they left it there as a memorial or what, I haven’t been there since. Nobody knows that, Miss. You can’t imagine that... you couldn’t be sure from minute to minute when somebody would call for you and then kill you. They didn’t care.
And who were these chosen, you know sergeants, the same as in other concentration camps, in these [unintelligible]. You know, they were in blocks [unintelligible], they told them, they were even worse than the Germans, than the Germans. And these people were prisoners, prisoners... It was a life.
Q: And did it happen, for instance, that someone came to like you, one of the gendarmes, or some other person, they were only human, and they liked you or something.
A: Yea, they had dorms of their own, their own dorms, their own dorms. They were around the camp, how can I explain it to you, sort of cottages.
A: Sort of cottages, you know. And again, the girls, the nurses, _____, so they went to clean the cottages. So, I respected, I really respected our director Blahynka, he was really an extraordinary man. He probably didn’t hurt anybody during the whole time, never, Miss. So he, he always told me, many times he asked me" Kveta, can you tell me..." as I carried a basin, water or whatever into his office. " And asked me " Kveta, can you tell me, can you tell me, when you clean here, here and there, you are working and you see me often" I cuddled his shoulders and I said to him "You know you are a human being, you really do have a heart" And he said "I know that, girl" " And now, tell me, if you could like someone here" I said "I could, you" I said "I am telling you the honest truth. But I like you as a father, as a father." Because he was an older man, you know. I said "I adore you, like my Dad." He might have liked that or not, but probably yes. He made the best of it. So he said "You are a nice little girl."
Q: He did like you probably.
A: I don’t know, I don’t know. It is possible, but, I tell you, I respected him as my father, yea. Then policeman Vyroba came to the dispensary, he had taken a hospital course, you know. Well and this man, this man was very hard working, very hard. And he even asked me, if I survived the camp if I would like to live with him or go somewhere else. I said, I said, "Not at all, because my mum needs to look after her kids, till her kids were grown up enough, I can’t leave my mum and go with you, can I. You can’t ask me to do that."
Q: Yes, he was thinking about after the war, probably.
A: Yes, after the war, after the war, well could I leave my mum there? Could I ? What would she do, what, tell me.
Q: And if this had not happened, you would be living with him?
A: Maybe yes, if I had been like other girls, you know. Maybe yes, he was a Czech, he was not a German. So you see I have my youngest sister I liked her, but she isn’t here any more, Miss, like my other sisters who are here. She stayed, immediately when she came back, yes. Then she left for Germany, stayed there and she is still there. She lives there.
Q: And this Vyroba he harassed you?
A: No, no, no. There were girls there who had relationships. But it didn‘t help them either, so what. Why should I do it, why Miss.
Q: But you didn‘t know did you? In those conditions there. There are different attitudes
different views everywhere.
A: I know that.
Q: Humans want to live.
A: I know that. With that poverty, when you have bad nerves and in that sort of life and when your whole family was there. Maybe if I had been there on my own, on my own it probably would have been different you know. But I have seen my little brothers and sisters and my mother as skinny as anything, just bones.
Q: But you could have said to yourself that you would help them.
A: Yea, and how, how could I help them?
Q: Well somebody could for instance give you some food or clothes.
A: Yea, yea.
Q: You say he was helping you a lot.
A: He helped, he helped me when it was necessary. When I was bandaging, you know.
Q: I see...
A: Or for instance when they came back from the work. You know. 1200 people were standing there and I had to look after them all. Then it was almost impossible to do everything, Miss. And sometimes my head was spinning so I always used to say, "Please be careful when I take something I don't want to hurt anyone else." I was always asking him about it. He always answered, "Don't worry, I will be careful" and he always looked at where I was taking things from. I respected him because I knew what would happen to me after the war, you know.