Here is an example - the memory of the woman Valentina Ivanovna Potarayko, whose childhood fell on the war years. “I was five or six years old. We were evacuated from the besieged Leningrad to the Perm Region. We drove through Ladoga, where we were bombed. Many children then died, and who survived, suffered fear. We were taken to the Urals on commodity trips. At some small station the Nazis bombed the train, the cars caught fire. Everything around was confused: adults were rushing from side to side, children were crying. My older sister, Nina, was wounded in the face by a splinter. Blood spurted from the ears and the fractured jaw. The middle sister Tamara bullets hit in the leg. Mother was mortally wounded. For the rest of my life I remembered this picture. Sisters were taken away to give them medical care. And I sat next to my mother, who was put on sawdust. A strong wind blew, sawdust covered her wounds, mom moaned, and I cleaned her wounds and asked: "Mom, don't die!". But she died, I was left alone.
When our train was bombed a second time, we fell into the hands of the Germans. The Nazis lined up children separately, adults separately. From horror, no one cried, looked at everything with glass eyes. We clearly learned: if you cry, they will shoot you. So before our eyes killed a little girl who screamed without stopping. Fascist nonhumans shot at the children for fun, to see how the children scatter in fear, or practiced accuracy ... "
Reading these scary lines (or others), that's what I think. How did it happen - the children from infancy saw death, absolutely did not know the feeling of security, lived in the hardest conditions, were starving, the parents (if they were alive) could not physically devote them much time. And if we are talking about occupation, then this is life in sheer fear and hatred. That generation was called lost. But after all from those children in the majority normal people grew! Remember the words of Muller from the famous movie “Seventeen Moments of Spring”: “The gold of the party is a bridge to the future, this is an appeal to our children, to those who are now a month, a year, three. Those who are ten now, we are not needed, they will not forgive us for grief, hunger and bombings. But those who are still not aware of anything, will speak of us as a legend, their worldview is already overwhelmed completely. And the legend must be fed. As soon as instead of “hello!” They say “Heil!” To someone’s personal address, you know, they are waiting for us there, from there we will begin our great revival ... ”
But this perekorezhennogo consciousness did not happen! But the horror lasted for four years. How did the Russian people manage not to give up their children to insanity?
And in spite of everything, the children played!
Girls, of course, in dolls. They were mostly sewn by themselves. True, it was possible to buy a blank - a factory head and make only the torso. But, as a rule, they took a log, painted a face on it, and then wrapped it in old rags. Or they were completely sewn from canvas, their heads were stuffed with sawdust or tow. Face painted chemical pencils or coal. By the way, there is about this chapter in the book “Sunny Day” by Lyubov Voronkova - there my grandmother sewed a doll to girls. True, we are talking about the post-war years, but the description is very lively. Even the, as grandmother drooled pencil, to eyebrows were more black.
Swaddled and corn cobs to hair out. And bunches of dill were tied into braids, and then they were attached to thick sticks.
The boys made their own toys from old boards. Here, of course, mostly pistols and machine guns were obtained. They also made balls: they took old rags, twisted them tightly and tied them in a knot. Such balls didn’t jump, but they were good for the game. There was a very special way: they stroked the cows with a wet hand and thus collected wool from them. Then this pile was additionally moistened with water and rolled into a tight ball. It was a very jumping ball. Or they took a bull or a pig bubble, washed it, blew it up and tied it up with a string.
In wartime, collectors of old clothes traveled through the villages. And in exchange for things "rag-pickers" often gave clay whistles - they were worth their weight in gold for the children. True, the children themselves sculpted from clay, but mostly dishes, furniture and just different figures. Dried in the sun, many burned in kilns.
They also played chocks - something like small wooden sticks. They were smeared with resin on one side, warmed up near the stove - the designer was obtained.
The game of pebbles was very popular with kids. They collected those that are smaller, threw and tried to catch the back of his hand, so that the stones do not fall. Try it, you need a great skill here!
If they found big old nails, the boys made the railroad. We nailed the nails on top of the wooden rectangular bars — this is the locomotive with the pipe. And if you nail it to the side and bend it, you get carriages, you can hook them together.
Of course, during the war they also played war, but not during the occupation. There were plenty of cartridges and gunpowder around, not to mention other things of wartime. Gunpowder was poured out of the cartridges and thrown into the fire. Only no one portrayed the fascists, this role was assigned mainly to trees. Well, and, of course, the boys could not help but try themselves in the role of pyrotechnics, which often ended tragically.
From the memories of Lipchanin Yuri Serafimovich Shcherbak (he and his wife are in the photo), whose childhood was spent in the occupied Voronezh region: “Once we found a treasure with the boys - a lot of sulfur. In general, it was difficult for her to surprise the boys of the war years, but we were especially lucky: these were whole deposits! Dismantled in pieces and went to use in the case.
We knew the house where the fascists had a bath. They waited for a moment while the Fritz were washing, spread the sulfur around the bath and began to bubble. What a rumble rose! We did not expect this. Scared and ran away. The Nazis have jumped out already weapons, shouting (we made out what kind of they decided, the partisans are close). Then they saw us fleeing, and after the queue began to give machine guns to give. And on our way there was a high fence, and there was a hole in it. All the boys crawled into this hole, and I got stuck. How scary I was! I suffer in this hole, but the fascists saw this, they began to neigh and began to draw “patterns” on the fence with machine guns around me. I don’t know how I crawled out and my legs carried me on to the guys ”...
The wartime children, accustomed to the bombing, ran, despite the prohibitions of their parents, to collect trophies after the bombings. There was also a new game - to the hospital ...
... In the meantime, German children also played. And here one cannot help but recall the name of Joseph Goebbels, the Reich Minister of Propaganda and Education. The Nazis knew a lot about propaganda and even “treated” children. So, shortly before the war, the game “Jews - Get Out of Here!” Appeared. The player had to take six Jews out of the city and deliver them to the assembly point, from where they would go to Palestine. This is not easy to do: one of the Jews has a mess with documents, someone does not want to leave for Palestine. It was written in the rules: “You won a clear victory if you managed to expel all six Jews.” The game was released in a huge edition. Of course, there is no physical destruction, executions or gas chambers. But an idea, an idea!
And the game “Fighting a coal thief”, released in 1942 year and calling to save coal and not burn electricity in vain? And the board game "Bombers over England"?
The strategy is very clear: aggression. And we did not have aggressive games.
And the holidays? Did they have our kids, well, at least the New Year? Yes they were. Moreover, even the production of Christmas tree toys did not stop completely, but was greatly reduced. True, in conditions of total deficit, it was necessary to stamp and then paint tin figures. And parachutists became the most popular Christmas tree toy. It was easy to make them yourself by tying a rag to any small figure.
And the New Year was celebrated as they could.
There is a very good documentary story of Steel Anatolyevich Shmakov. It is called “New Year at Yashkino Station” - about how adults in the rear held a holiday for the children. Santa Claus had a head of cabbage in his bag - he was divided into all ...
And here is another documentary история. It occurred in 1941 in the village of Vasilyevka, Izmalkovsky district of the Lipetsk region.
Santa Claus Zakhar
In the Altukhov family, twelve-year-old Zakhar was the eldest son. Twins - brother and sister - just turned seven years old. And in December of that terrible year, when the Germans broke into the village, the twins died. The Germans shot them for a loud cry. For some reason, Zakhara and his mother did not touch.
Soon our army went on the offensive and the Germans were driven out of the village. And the boy and his mother were left in an empty, crippled house.
Zakhar wanted to go to the front to get revenge on the Nazis for the little brother and little sister. I did not sleep for long nights, secretly from my mother thinking over my long and difficult path. But the mother guessed her son's plans.
- I will not let you go! - she said. - There, at the front, our father and all the men. And here, too, need help. Here the children stayed. Look around, son! Help the neighbors kids raise! We, mothers, do not close all the holes.
And Zakhar stayed. He had a lot of cares and in the first days of the war, and now it has become a great deal. The neighbor has three children left orphans - a funeral has recently come to their father. Another neighbor had a seven-year-old granddaughter, whose mother was killed by the Nazis. Zakhar was acquainted with all the children in the village. And so it happened that not only in the family, but in all of their once large village, he remained among the children for the eldest.
... And time passed. New Year already slowly looked into the windows. And despite the war, all the Vasiliev children waited for Santa Claus. None of them dreamed of new toys. The dream was one for all: so that the war would end soon.
Zakhar, along with the children, was waiting for peace. But he understood that no Santa Claus would come ... And sleepless nights flowed. A boy from his father’s clothes made a suit for himself. And from his T-shirts and shirts he sewed little cubs and stuffed them with straw. His mother helped him.
And then came the New Year's Eve. After dressing in his father's jacket, on which his mother embroidered snowflakes with white threads, hiding his face with a beard of tow and throwing a bag of old pillow cases over his shoulders, Zakhar set off.
- Knock Knock! he shouted loudly, knocking on a neighbor with three kids. - It's me, Santa Claus, brought you some presents!
The door opened, Zakhar entered the hut. In the middle of the room at the table were surprised and joyful kids. And on the table was a bowl of sauerkraut and a pot with boiled turnips.
- What is silenced? - smiled Zakhar. - Say, who wants something?
“I would have felt boots,” one of the babies drawled.
But he was immediately pulled up by the older girl:
- I'll give you my boots. So let the war end tomorrow.
Zakhar paused in embarrassment, but took himself in hand and promised. I handed the kids presents and left. He needed to go around many more houses, and sixty-three bears were still in his bag.
Zakhar returned home on the first of January. And immediately fell on the bed with fatigue.
And in the morning they knocked on the Altukhovs' house. Mother opened the door - on the threshold stood the mother of children whom “Santa Claus” congratulated first.
- Sleeping? she asked. - Well done! My guys do not part with these bears. Here, they told your son to hand over boiled beets.
- What are you! Zakhar will be very upset if he realizes that the children have recognized him.
- So you do not tell him! They also told me to keep the secret.
Soon came another neighbor and brought a good birch besom. History repeated.
A few days went to the hut Altukhov neighbors. Thanked. And in fact, none of the children gave the appearance that they recognized “Santa Claus” ...
A "Santa Claus" after the war became a tractor driver. Years bent his back, he lost his sight. In recent years, he lived in Lipetsk alone - the son went to Ryazan. While his eyes saw, grandfather Zakhar Fedorovich himself sewed and sent toys to his grandchildren.