Fira B. – Ivankov, Ukraine

IVANKOV, UKRAINE-June 21, 2006

Dear Much-Esteemed Friends!

My son Mark brought me from Kiev your dear letter with 60 dollars.

I heartfeltly thank you for your goodness, humanity, concern, and empathy.

Over such a great distance you have become for me not just acquaintances, but relatives.

Please forgive me for my delay in replying. It is not of my own doing. I was in the hospital for a month with high blood pressure and terrible pain in the bone of my left leg all the way down to the toes. I have hypertensive blood pressure, and the climate here is always terrible. After a very hard winter-downpours of rain, storms with hurricane-force winds-this has a negative effect on my system. And my town of Ivankov is located 85 km. from Kiev and from 50-55 km. from Cherynbyl-Pripyat (that is, Ch.A.E.S., the Chernobyl Atomic Electrical Station), where the world catastrophe took place in the 4th reactor in 1980. We live in the third zone. Almost all our food products are transported in from elsewhere.

Again “from the bottom of my heart” [“from the soul”] I am grateful to you and wish you good health, earthly happiness, joy, and that you would have an unending supply of it.

Successes! May God bless you for the mitzvah that you are doing.

I embrace and kiss you as a relative.

Fira af yidish Ester Itskhokh’s, mama Leah Borokh’s.

Note: in Yiddish, “Itskhak’s Ester and my mother, Borukh’s Leah” (a touching and old-fashioned Jewish style of referring to people (her parents).

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