Letter from a GULAG Camp in Vikhorevka. New Year, 1955, Night

Although last year was so full of happy hopes of reunion; hopes that the new year we will be together, but the time is not here yet, I guess. In reality, the time came a long time ago, but we were not successful yet in proving my innocence, although it is like proving the obvious that 2+2 is 4.

Catching up with the Present
Older than my father

By my father Isaac Kagan http://mapcarta.com/28444892

Dear Riva and kids,

Family
Better times

The first page of the new calendar 1955 is open already.

Despite the accepted rules for good wishes at the end of the letter, I start my New Year’s letter exactly with these.

Let this new year be the year of happy reunion, happy family life!

It’s really time now for it. (It is long overdue.)

Although last year was so full of happy hopes of reunion; hopes that in the new year we will be together, but the time is not here yet, I guess. In reality, the time came a long time ago, but we were not successful yet in proving my innocence, although it is like proving the obvious that 2+2 is 4.

So far, the time stretches as in the past. My head is heavy from all kind of thoughts, assumptions, dreams.

The letter from GULAG
1951. Our family before the arrest of my father

Only in my dreams at night, there are happy moments that I am finally home, next to my dear family. Everybody together, you my dear wife Riva, my dear children, myself, walking on the streets of Bobruysk, in the center – prematurely gray-haired father and mother, on each side – kids. People smile at us, friends, relatives. My happy little son, shows me his school. And suddenly, seeing his teacher he says whispering – “This is my teacher.” People say about my daughter – ” How good she is, how lovely she looks.”

The blood pulses faster in my temples from such thoughts, and I feel endless happiness.

It is evening, home, everybody is here. The whole family is together at night. My son is sitting at the table and doing his homework. My good “old lady” Riva is fixing some cloth.

Grandma is busy in the kitchen. I am next to my dear wife reading a book to her aloud, combining pleasure with necessity. How wonderful everything is around me! Every corner of the house, every piece in the house has this sense of a warm feeling of family, the feeling is so warm, so joyous, we should live like that for thousands of years.

But… somebody knocked. I open my eyes, was this a dream? How fleeting was the dream!

I am forcing myself to close my eyes – come back, come back my sweet, happy dream. What a wonderful feeling I had 2 minutes ago, how good I felt!

Before freedom
!955
Baba Riva
Mom 1998

But I cannot fell asleep again. And again different thoughts are taking over me. I start to dream, try to continue my dream. But my heart is heavier and heavier, I feel harsh reality – my dear house, my dear family is far away, a thousand kilometers from here.

New Year night is here. What is awaiting me, what paths, what kind of life?

I am telling myself with trepidation: “My health, the most important thing, please do not let me down, help me to see my beloved wife, my dear children, my relatives and close friends.”…

My dear friend, New Year, please bring health and happiness to all of us, to all who are close to my heart, let our dream of aaast reunion become true.

Be healthy my dear!

Big kisses. Your Isaac.