My new name is Janina Kruk. Day 9. The last day :(.

This morning I awoke to a beautiful day. I met Zenon  in the lobby at 0830 which is the time we met every morning for breakfast. This morning we checked out of the hotel and drove just around the corner for our breakfast. After a nice breakfast we drove across town to visit with Halina.

Halina was excited to see us as I was excited to see her. As soon as we walked into her home, Halina  told Zenon she found a picture of Antonia Kruk, my grandfather’s sister.

My great aunt Maria - hidden after her the woman holding child in the center.
My great aunt Maria – hidden after her the woman holding child in the center.

I could not believe I would finally be able to see a picture of my grandfathers sister.  After viewing the picture I definitely could see similarities of myself in her.  What a moment. For years I had been searching for records of family in Poland on the Krukowski side with no luck, My first day  in Poland I received an email from Zenon and learned my surname was Kruk. Nine days later because of Zenon expertise I have a picture of my Grandfather’s sister.  Unbelievable !!!!

We exchanged addresses then we said our  goodbyes . Then after a quick stop at the kantor to exchange a few dollars we drove to Kol Brzeznio to visit with Kamila. When we arrived Kamila was outside on her way for potatoes in her cellar.  She eagerly invited us inside her home for tea and sweets. We talked about her family, war time and viewed photos.  I would have liked to spend the entire day however we had to drive to Warsaw to meet Hanna for keys for the apartment I would be renting for the next 7 days. Warsaw from Kol Breznio is about a 2 hours drive.  We exchanged addresses and said our goodbyes. I told Kamila and Halina I will come back next year for a longer visit. After a quick drive to view the church again we were off to Warsaw.

We arrive in Old Town Warsaw met Hanna who gave me the keys to Tamko Den, my home for the next 7 days.

What a journey this has been much  more then what I ever expected.  During this journey Zenon has taught me so much about the history of Poland not only during the time of my ancestors but during communist times. He searched birth and death records for hours to figure out what happen to my grandfather’s sisters’ 10 children, uncovering they had all died at a young age. He obtained marriage records of Kruk’s and Murwaski thus expanding my tree. And he found relatives who were still alive which I was able to meet. This was truly a unique, emotional, humbling  journey for me, made possible by Zenon expertise in genealogy.  Zenon, “dziękuję!!” “Do zobaczenia w przyszłym roku.”

Janina Kruk

One comment

  1. Dziekuje Janina for giving me the opportunity to experience this adventure!

    As I told you, although I have been doing genealogy tours for years and each journey is unique it was an amazing and emotional experience to help you and being witness of all the discoveries and family meetings.

    I think it was especially moving to learn from your relatives how the most recent history of Poland, including WWII and communism years, severely affected your family in Poland and Lithuania. But your they persevered all of that and now you can come back to them!

    See you next year!

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