My mother took me from Israel to Europe in 1950; I was five. She wanted to see about her father’s grave in Vienna. He had died there before her mother was deported to Theresienstadt.

Tourists could only take out a bit of money, so she smuggled black market American dollars, some rolled in a fountain pen, others folded neatly into chewing gum papers, the sticks removed. I carried these hidden dollars in my pocket. They suspected her and she was stripped naked.

Afterwards I asked, “Can I have a stick of mastic (gum)?” “Yes, Mirale. Once we’re on the ship.”

Miriam Frischer cooks, writes, and collages in the Hudson Valley (and is grateful to wake up to its beauty every day).