Today, after many, many frustrating moments that will inevitably arise when you travel in foreign lands for months at a time, I was on the road to Dachau, the first concentration camp built in 1933, soon after Adolf Hilter took power in Germany. This experience simply added to my sobering day. I have been in my head, choosing not to take pictures of what I saw as I hope you are able to one day visit a concentration camp memorial and have your own first hand experiences in the future.
What I felt/feel after reading the accounts of the inhumane way in which thousands, if not millions, of people were treated because of their religious beliefs, political views or simply b/c they didn't look the part, was humbled. I have to be honest with you all and say that though traveling around Europe is exciting and full of unique adventures, it also comes with difficulties. From simple things like not knowing if the tap water is drinkable, to bigger things like not having a home and constantly sleeping in different beds night after night. I am not writing this to try to invoke sympathy, believe me. Chris and I are very much enjoying ourselves. But during the moments of homesickness or feelings of frustration the world seems to be batting against me. Then I visit Dachau and see what suffering truly means. How these people who were beaten, degraded, humiliated, starved and tortured on a daily basis still had the will to live, to survive and stay strong through stories of their people or songs from their homelands or poetry, even underground orchestras were formed to keep spirits alive. These were people who were fighting for their lives and suffering intolerable conditions for what probably seemed to be a never ending amount of time, clinging on to the smallest spark of hope. Therefore I felt/feel humbled. A new perspective quickly puts me in my place as I am living this life of comfort and world exploration. I have never truly known what it means to suffer. I hope the same is true for you.
After reading this entry, please take a minute of silence and reflect on what it is you are thankful for in your lives.