AMSTERDAM (JTA) — On a country road steeped in spring blossom, the 5-year-old in the backseat asked a question that sent shivers down our spines.
“Did the farmer plant those trees around his house because his family’s Jewish?” he asked us, his parents, pointing at a farmhouse we passed along the way.
I knew immediately what he meant.
“What do you mean?” I asked anyway.
“So people wouldn’t be able to see them from the road,” he replied.
It was startling evidence of how his mother and I — and perhaps life itself as a Dutch-Jewish boy — have allowed Holocaust traumas to mark his young mind and that of his younger sister.