Today I remembered yet another box full of documents and papers which I had put away for sorting. Most of it is loose pieces of paper on which my grandmother, Olga Woronoff, had written notes and stories. Some of them are in English, a fair bit in Russian. The vast
If I were ever granted three wishes, my first would be to understand every language in the world because I would then be able to comprehend all of the family history documents I have inherited. Not that I would need to know more than German, Russian, French and Latvian, but
What do you get when you mix boiled potatoes with pickles and peas? Well if you add boiled eggs and mayonnaise – lots of mayonnaise – you have a basic Olivier Salad. I have been assured this is a salad which Russians serve on New Year’s eve and at any
There is a Chinese proverb about learning languages which goes: “To learn a language is to have one more window from which to look at the world”. For a few years now I have been learning German. Although I stopped formal lessons some time ago, I have a couple of
If I could turn back time… I would go back to the time just before I was born. Those couple of months just before the birth of their first, and ultimately only, child when my parents were presumably discussing how they would bring me up. I would try to infiltrate
Unknown Russian signatures on a French menu dated 1912. The question is, how to discover who they belong to?
I have no system yet for sorting through the many photographs, documents and letters I have inherited from both sides of my family. Much of the time I cannot even read them as they are written in either Russian or German. Sometimes, when I pass them onto translators, even native