|Jewish Cemetery Krakow|
Today, one can still visit more than 7 surviving synagogues within a few city blocks. The Stara (old) synagogue has been lovingly restored and now serves as a museum. Most evocative for me was the cemetery-which sustained extensive damage at the hands of the Nazis but now has a serenity that pays tribute to the contribution of Jews to Poland and Krakow. In addition, pieces of damaged and desecrated tombstones found throughout Krakow (the Nazis classically used them to build roads) have been fashioned into an evocative memorial.
|Krakow's "Wailing Wall"|
|Memorial at Plaszow Concentration Camp|
In just 4 hours, I had followed a history that spanned hundreds of years. We all study the Holocaust but somehow, tracing the history of this long-standing, thriving Jewish community (65,000 pre-war) to complete decimation gave me greater insight and of course, great sadness.
But our day was barely half over-now we departed for Auschwitz-Birkenau...