Ramona, the inmate matron, led Eva into the warehouse the Jewish people called “Kanada,” which symbolized their dreams of a place with great wealth and freedom. In it, mounds of clothes, shoes, suitcases, and other belongings were piled thirty feet high, a Matterhorn of stolen possessions. Huge baskets overflowed with eyeglasses, combs, brushes, and wedding rings.
“This is the sorting warehouse. It’s not hard. You sort things into piles,” Ramona explained. “The valuable things are sent back to Germany.”
“To be sold. It pays for the trains that bring us here,” Ramona said matter-of-factly, as she searched the side pockets of a suitcase.
“Why do you do their dirty work? You’re one of us,” Eva said. “I think that—”
“Don’t think,” Ramona interrupted. “Just try to survive. Thinking always causes problems.”
“But if you survive, how can you live?” Eva asked.
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