Pilgrimage 2: Unravelling Fog

This is an episode in “the quest for Jan van Boeckel: From Holland to Bavaria”.

Just a short post to inform you on the progress being made in the research/writing project ‘From Holland to Bavaria’ about Jan van Boeckel. Although I am totally wrapped up in delving, unearthing and unravelling activities, let me take the time out to explain my lack of posting . My pilgrimage two weeks ago started in Dachau, which gave me a chance to see the places I had already visited in September from the perspective of what I now know about Jan. There I closed the circle to be able to follow his footsteps from death to life.

DSC_8619-02I then went on to the location of the former KZ Ring-me,  where I was guided by two researchers and former villagers who are keeping the memory of the former camp alive in the community. They showed me the important places and told me what they knew. A very special experience. I day later I returned on my own to let it sink in and experience the place.

These days at Dachau and Saal were not easy, but I am very glad to have had the opportunity to listen and understand.

In addition I have been writing. And delving into the Flossenbürg concentration camp archives. Thanks to the wonderful custodians of the Flossenbürg memorial. I now know what happened to the people Jan knew from Belgium and from Zuchthaus Ebrach and can weave this into Jan’s story.

My pilgrimage is taking on an extended form which will last up onto May at the least it seems. I am visiting  a number of family members this month to explain to them personally how I am unravelling the fog created by the Nazi’s, and I hope to gain some more insights as some have been on the same path in the past. I will then follow Jan on from death to life here in Germany, and have a meeting planned with someone who experienced what he went through.

In an attempt to get more back ground for my writing I will follow his footsteps back  down the timeline from death to life to Belgium where I also hope to shake the hand of people who have helped me immensely and who are children of Jan’s friends, who both survived the concentration camps.

And all the while I am writing and trying to find a voice to write in……not an easy task. A first try-out of a short chapter is now being read by one of my testreaders…

Many thanks to Peter, Birgit, Roger and Anne and to the Flossenbürg memorial custodians for their help and care, and to the supportive people out there who are following my journey.

This is an episode in “the quest for Jan van Boeckel: From Holland to Bavaria”.




4 thoughts on “Pilgrimage 2: Unravelling Fog

    1. It is a search that seems to have several layers. The beautiful thing is that I can provide people who were directly or indirectly touched by Jan’s life with insights by walking his path. A fascinating journey…

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Glad I discovered your blog. Reading this blog, my thoughts go out to Daniel, the father of my brother in law. He survived Dachau. A particularly nice man who never couldn’t talk about the abomination. He always said, the horror was too big for words

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Welcome to mogromo. The deeper I delve into this history, the more I realise how important it is to keep telling these stories to prevent it ever from happening again in our free society.

      Liked by 1 person

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