The insurgent accounts of witness

My war 1939-1945

Janusz Walkuski
born 3.01.1934 in Ciechanów

Pigs and lice

         One day we were passing with Marian Elektoralna Street, and in the entrance to the "Amor" cinema we saw a drawn small pig that instead of small pig's eyes had swastikas, and next to her an inscription: "Only pigs sit in the flicks!"
         We were amazed with it very much.
         In the classroom the consumption of chalk increased while on the walls near the gubernatorial temples of culture, multiplied pigs in the speed never ever met in the nature! I was an expert in small pigs, while Marian calligraphed the inscriptions.
         On our operational field cinemas resembled piggeries. It went so smooth that we stopped taking precautions. Passers-by warned us when there was a German or a policeman nearby.
         It so happened that when we were getting everything done in the "Uciecha " (= delight; amusement;) cinema at Zlota Street, it was raining and nobody noticed that in a cab with a hood up there was sitting a German officer with a permed horrible woman. He surprised us totally! We were so immersed in the job that we spotted him only when he had grabbed us by the collars... Kraut was yelling in a drinker's voice, wanted to drag us into the open door of the box office hall. We resisted with all our might, struggling and spinning in all directions! Involuntarily, the yelling horrible woman helped us by trying to call him.

Zlota Street. Instead of telephone booths there was the "Uciecha" cinema
where I let German catch me.

         People stopped on the other street side - a great show was on!
         Seams of clothes were creaking, but we couldn't release ourselves! It seemed that Kraut started being bored with the prolonged scramble and maybe because of the yelling frau, he would let us out from his mitts, when "our" policemen turned up and carrying out his order the policeman took us in his hands.
         Without any resistance on our part, we reached the police station at Krochmalna Street. Here two policemen took care of us, and though they had omnious faces they were apparently amused with this they had heard from us. After some minutes, one of them led us onto the street and said shaking a warning finger at us:
         - Off you go! That I would never meet you here again, as...
         He didn't have to finish, as we disappeared on the spot!
         We stopped smearing pigs though it didn't mean that we stopped working "in the movies."
         By accident we hit on an idea of a new game. One of the boys brought to the classroom "angel hair" (glass wool, popular when Christmas trees are decorated) and threw it in the collars - it caused a feeling of pricking and a strong itching.
         In that case the joke wasn't the best one, but its adaptation of our aims brought excellent results.
         The method of action was simple. Obtaining "angel hair" was no problem at all. Glass wool was cut with scissors, then crushed in the mortar, then it filled up paper pipes, clogging them at both ends with pieces of wool. Several dozen "cigarettes" prepared that way were taken to the cinema. We took places in the first row on the balcony and during the show we blew the "lice" on the stage.
         It wasn't necessary to wait for the results of "angel hair" working. For some of them they were so annoying that they left their places with a belief that cinema little lice were gnawing on them.
         We louse-infested "only for the German" cinemas. To get there we pinned badges with a swastika, bought in a shop at Ujazdowskie Avenues, just behind the Square of Three Crosses - the end justifies the means.

         That activity cost us some money and sacrifices as tickets to the cinema weren't cheap for us - we put aside every little coin; we didn't eat cookies, we didn't drink lemonade, we drove by tramway without a ticket, and home shopping was a little more expensive...
         We lived in a modest but a happy way!

         Sometimes similar innocent games ended badly. Tadek, my classmate, pinned onto Germans cut out from the very paper, small skeletons with Hitler's image - he was caught by a Polish snooper living in the same house as Tadek. The boy was beaten seriously and let free, but his father got to the labour camp and didn't come back...

Janusz Wałkuski

      Janusz Walkuski
in our times

drawn up by: Maciej Janaszek-Seydlitz

translation: Małgorzata Szyszkowska

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