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12: Budapest Under Fire

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Budapest Under Fire (1)


Crowds of housewives were lined up at the food stores, and they did not limit their purchases to immediate needs. Women who had scraped up enough money were struggling home from the market with a goose in each hand, against the uncertain days ahead.

An even longer line had formed in front of the municipal pawnshop. In impoverished Hungary one pawned one's winter wardrobe in the summer and one's summer things in the winter; now people flocked by the hundreds and thousands to redeem their winter clothes. "In 1944 the Russians looted all the pawnshops," someone in the queue told me. "So we're taking our things out now before it's too late." Women coming out of the shop staggered under the bundles of clothes and the valises they had to carry home. Fortunately the buses were running again. Things were getting back to normal. [27]

[November 3]

1. Peter Schmid, from "Budapest Under Fire," Commentary, XXIII (January, 1957), 27.

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