Auch im Lockdown können wunderbare schulische Produkte entstehen, wie z.B. diese bemerkenswerte und rührende Geschichte in Tagebuchform. Die Aufgabe – im Englischunterricht einer 6. Klasse – war es, eine kurze Geschichte über einen Gegenstand zu schreiben, der am Ufer der Themse gefunden wird.

Diary of Nuriel Freudenthal

by Frieda Reinke, 6d


30th January 1933
Today is a bad day. No! Today is the worst days in my life. It’s very sad that I am starting to write in this diary today. But yesterday (my 12th birthday, by the way) my granny sent this diary as a present to me and wrote that I should start writing as fast as I can. So I do.

1st February 1933
Today I met Marie. She’s my best friend and she gave me a present. Marie felt very embarrassed that the couldn’t give it to me on my birthday … But her father forbid her to meet me. So this meeting was top secret. Marie gave me a bracelet. On the bracelet, there is a French tower (I don’t know its name) and a teddy bear.

5th February 1933
Today my parents had a big conflict. Dad said that we should leave Germany. I know why he wants to leave. We are Jewish. But Mom was very angry about that idea. My parents told me to go out, but I could hear all. Mum won. We are staying here.

8th February 1933
Today I met Marie again.

10th February 1933
Today Dad lost his Job. He was working at the newspaper. Now Dad is searching for another job. He is sad. In the world war, he fought for Germany. I told Marie everything. She said, if we need anything, I should tell her.

11th February 1933
Today Dad talked again about leaving Germany. But I don’t want to leave Marie! Tomorrow we will meet at the swimming pool. I am very excited!


3rd March 1935
I am so sorry that I didn’t write for such a long time. So many awful things happened. Marie and I can’t meet very often. Dad lost his fourth job.

4th March 1935
It is certain that we will leave Germany! We all! Mom, Dad and I. I don’t know how to tell Marie.

6th March 1935
Marie was very angry, She shouted: „You want to leave me! You don’t like me anymore! “ and ran away. I don’t know what to do.

29th March 1935
Mom is crying. She and Dad didn’t get a visa. Only I can leave Germany. But I don’t want to, without my parents. Marie isn’t talking to me at all.

10th May 1935
Tomorrow I will leave Germany. Tomorrow I will sit in a train to France. From France, I will get to England by ship. Mom and Dad will come as quickly as possible.

11th May 1935
The farewell. The farewell to Mom. The farewell to Dad. We cried, we laughed. We kissed, we gave each other a hug. My memories are fuzzy. I remember that Mom promised that everything will be good. Then the train started. Marie wasn’t there.


1st September 1939
I didn’t write for four years, I know … But when I came here, I wanted no journal entry without living with my parents. This isn’t working. My Granny died two years ago. I haven’t heard anything of my parents for two weeks, and today Germany started a war. I wrote up to 300 letters to Marie. Not one was answered.

2nd September 1939
Yesterday I didn’t tell anything about my life and what is like, so I will do this now. I am living at an orphanage. I don’t like it very much, but I have some new friends and a room with two other nice girls. I am not the only one here who is from Germany. Aviava is from Germany too. But I don’t do so many things with her. I have a guilty conscience if I have good friends. Marie …

23d December 1939
I have a job! (ok, it’s only a small job, and I don’t get much money, but hey!) Clark – a boy who is living here too – is working as a boy who is selling newspapers. And he asked me if I want to do this too! I am so happy.


2nd January 1940
I am happy again. Very happy. I got a letter from Mom!!! But I will wait to open it ‘till tomorrow.

3d January 1940
Mom wrote that she doesn’t know where Dad is. She is in France and trying to come to me! And she didn’t write for so long because there was a mistake by the post office. I will write her back in a few minutes.

11th January 1940
Today I started my first working day. It was amazing.

10th February 1940
My father is dead. He died two weeks ago. Smiling – never again. Laughing – never again. Happiness – never again. Optimism – never again. Seeing my father’s face – never again.

6th September 1940
Marie. I am missing her. I am missing everyone. But I wished that Marie and I were friends when I left Germany.


Muriel died in the Second World War during an air raid.

Sixty years later, her old friend Marie is visiting London.

I was standing in the mud. My grandchild was searching for his bracelet. ”Granny“, he shouted, “Granny“. I went to him. In his hand, there was a bracelet. “Is it yours?“ I asked. “No“, he said and held the dirty bracelet right to my face. But wait: ”I know this bracelet“, I thought. I took it and saw the Eiffel Tower and a teddy bear. Nuriel. My best friend. I was so bad to her. On the day she left Germany, I ran to the station. But she already left. I wrote so many letters. No answers. Now I have a part of her.



(Important note: I don’t want to make anything ridiculous that happened at that awful time. I only saw the bracelet and had this story in my head. This is a story about an awful time, and I don’t want to trivialize this.)