1. THE DIARY OF A YOUNG GIRL : THE DEFINITIVE EDITIONAnne FrankEdited by Otto H. Frank and Mirjam PresslerTranslated by Susan Massotty-- : --BOOK FLAPAnne Franks The Diary of a Young Girl is among the mostenduring documents of the twentieth century. Since itspublication in 1947, it has been read by tens of millions ofpeople all over the world. It remains a beloved and deeplyadmired testament to the indestructable nature of the humanspirit.Restore in this Definitive Edition are diary entries thathad been omitted from the original edition. These passages,which constitute 30 percent more material, reinforce the factthat Anne was first and foremost a teenage girl, not a remoteand flawless symbol. She fretted about, and tried to copiewith, her own emerging sexuality. Like many young girls, sheoften found herself in disagreement with her mother. And likeany teenager, she veered between the carefree nature of achild and the full-fledged sorrow of an adult. Anne emergesmore human, more vulnerable, and more vital than ever.Anne Frank and her family, fleeing the horrors of Nazioccupation, hid in the back of an Amsterdam warehouse for twoyears. She was thirteen when the family went into the SecretAnnex, and in these pages she grows to be a young woman and awise observer of human nature as well. With unusual insight,she reveals the relations between eight people living underextraordinary conditions, facing hunger, the ever-presentthreat of discovery and death, complete estrangement from theoutside world, and above all, the boredom, the pettymisunderstandings, and the frustrations of living under suchunbearable strain, in such confined quarters.A timely story rediscovered by each new generation, TheDiary of a Young Girl stands without peer. For both young
2. readers and adults it continues to bring to life this youngwoman, who for a time survived the worst horror of the modernworld had seen -- and who remained triumphantly andheartbreakingly human throughout her ordeal. For those whoknow and love Anne Frank, The Definitive Edition is a chanceto discover her anew. For readers who have not yetencountered her, this is the edition to cherish.ANNE FRANK was born on June 12, 1929. She died whileimprisoned at Bergen-Belsen, three months short of hersixteenth birthday. OTTO H. FRANK was the only member of hisimmediate framily to survive the Holocaust. He died in 1980.MIRJAM PRESSLER is a popular writer of books for youngadults. She lives in Germany.Translated by Susan Massotty.-- : --FOREWORDAnne Frank kept a diary from June 12, 1942, to August 1,1944. Initially, she wrote it strictly for herself. Then, oneday in 1944, Gerrit Bolkestein, a member of the Dutchgovernment in exile, announced in a radio broadcast fromLondon that after the war he hoped to collect eyewitnessaccounts of the suffering of the Dutch people under theGerman occupation, which could be made available to thepublic. As an example, he specifically mentioned letters anddiaries.Impressed by this speech, Anne Frank decided that when thewar was over she would publish a book based on her diary. Shebegan rewriting and editing her diary, improving on the text,omitting passages she didnt think were interesting enoughand adding others from memory. At the same time, she kept upher original diary. In the scholarly work The Diary of AnneFrank: The Critical Edition (1989), Annes first, unediteddiary is referred to as version a, to distinguish it from hersecond, edited diary, which is known as version b.The last entry in Annes diary is dated August 1, 1944. OnAugust 4, 1944, the eight people hiding in the Secret Annexwere arrested. Miep Gies and Bep Voskuijl, the two
3. secretaries working in the building, found Annes diariesstrewn allover the floor. ,Miep Gies tucked them away in adesk drawer for safekeeping. After the war, when it becameclear that Anne was dead, she gave the diaries, unread, toAnnes father, Otto Frank.After long deliberation, Otto Frank decided to fulfill hisdaughters wish and publish her diary. He selected materialfrom versions a and b, editing them into a shorter versionlater referred to as version c. Readers all over the worldknow this as The Diary of a fauna Girl.In making his choice, Otto Frank had to bear severalpoints in mind. To begin with, the book had to be kept shortso that it would fit in with a series put out by the Dutchpublisher. In addition, several passages dealing with Annessexuality were omitted; at the time of the diarys initialpublication, in 1947, it was not customary to write openlyabout sex, and certainly not in books for young adults. Outof respect for the dead, Otto Frank also omitted a number ofunflattering passages about his wife and the other residentsof the Secret Annex. Anne Frank, who was thirteen when shebegan her diary and fifteen when she was forced to stop,wrote without reserve about her likes and dislikes.When Otto Frank died in 1980, he willed his daughtersmanuscripts to the Netherlands State Institute for WarDocumentation in Amsterdam. Because the authenticity of thediary had been challenged ever since its publication, theInstitute for War Documentation ordered a thoroughinvestigation. Once the diary was proved, beyond a shadow ofa doubt, to be genuine, it was published in its entirety,along with the results of an exhaustive study. The CriticalEdition contains not only versions a, band c, but alsoarticles on the background of the Frank family, thecircumstances surrounding their arrest and deportation, andthe examination into Annes handwriting, the document and thematerials used.The Anne Frank-Fonds (Anne Frank Foundation) in Basel(Switzerland),. which as Otto Franks sole heir had alsoinherited his daughters copyrights, then decided to haveanew, expanded edition of the diary published for generalreaders. This new edition in no way affects the integrity of
4. the old one originally edited by Otto Frank, which broughtthe diary and its message to millions of people. The task ofcompthng the expanded edition was given to the writer andtranslator Mirjam Pressler. Otto Franks original selectionhas now been supplemented with passages from Annes a and bversions. Mirjam Presslers definitive edition, approved bythe Anne Frank-Fonds, contains approximately 30 percent morematerial and is intended to give the reader more insight intothe world of Anne Frank.In writing her second version (b), Anne inventedpseudonyms for the people who would appear in her book. Sheinitially wanted to call herself Anne Aulis, and later AnneRobin. Otto Frank opted to call his family by their own namesand to follow Annes wishes with regard to the others. Overthe years, the identity of the people who helped the familyin the Secret Annex has become common knowledge. In thisedition, the helpers are now referred to by their real names,as they so justly deserve to be. All other persons are namedin accordance with the pseudonyms in The Critical Edition.The Institute for War Documentation has arbitrarily assignedinitials to those persons wishing to remain anonymous.The real names of the other people hiding in the SecretAnnex are:THE VAN PELS FAMILY(from Osnabriick, Germany):Auguste van Pels (born September 9, 1890)Hermann van Pels (born March 31, 1889)Peter van Pels (born November 8, 1926)Called by Anne, in her manuscript: Petronella, Hans andAlfred van Daan; and in the book: Petronella, Hermann andPeter van Daan.FRITZ PFEFFER(born April 30, 1889, in Giessen, Germany):Called by Anne, in her manuscript and in the book: AlfredDussel.The reader may wish to bear in mind that much of this
5. edition is based on the b version of Annes diary, which shewrote when she was around fifteen years old. Occasionally,Anne went back and commented on a passage she had writtenearlier. These comments are clearly marked in this edition.Naturally, Annes spelling and linguistic errors have beencorrected. Otherwise, the text has basically been left as shewrote it, since any attempts at editing and clarificationwould be inappropriate in a historical document.-- : --I hope I will be able to confide everything to you, as Ihave never been able to confide in anyone, and I hope youwill be a great source of comfort and support.-- : --June 12, 1942I hope I will be able to confide everything to you, as Ihave never been able to confide in anyone, and I hope youwill be a great source of comfort and support.COMMENT ADDED BY ANNE ON SEPTEMBER 28, 1942: So far youtruly have been a areat source of comfort to me, and so hasKitty, whom I now write to regularly. This way of keeping adiary is much nicer, and now I can hardly wait for thosemoments when Im able to write in you. Oh, Im so alad Ibrought you along!SUNDAY, JUNE 14, 1942Ill begin from the moment I got you, the moment I saw youlying on the table among my other birthday presents. (I wentalong when you were bought, but that doesnt count.)On Friday, June 12, I was awake at six oclock, whichisnt surprising, since it was my birthday. But Im notallowed to get up at that hour, so I had to control mycuriosity until quarter to seven. When I couldnt wait anylonger, I went to the dining room, where Moortje (the cat)welcomed me by rubbing against my legs.A little after seven I went to Daddy and Mama and then to
6. the living room to open my presents, and you were the firstthing I saw, maybe one of my nicest presents. Then a bouquetof roses, some peonies and a potted plant. From Daddy andMama I got a blue blouse, a game, a bottle of grape juice,which to my mind tastes a bit like wine (after all, wine ismade from grapes), a puzzle, a jar of cold cream, 2.50guilders and a gift certificate for two books. I got anotherbook as well, Camera Obscura (but Margot already has it, so Iexchanged mine for something else), a platter of homemadecookies (which I made myself, of course, since Ive becomequite an expert at baking cookies), lots of candy and astrawberry tart from Mother. And a letter from Grammy, righton time, but of course that was just a coincidence.Then Hanneli came to pick me up, and we went to school.During recess I passed out cookies to my teachers and myclass, and then it was time to get back to work. I didntarrive home until five, since I went to gym with the rest ofthe class. (Im not allowed to take part because my shouldersand hips tend to get dislocated.) As it was my birthday, Igot to decide which game my classmates would play, and Ichose volleyball. Afterward they all danced around me in acircle and sang "Happy Birthday." When I got home, SanneLedermann was already there. Ilse Wagner, Hanneli Goslar andJacqueline van Maarsen came home with me after gym, sincewere in the same class. Hanneli and Sanne used to be my twobest friends. People who saw us together used to say, "Theregoes Anne, Hanne and Sanne." I only met Jacqueline vanMaarsen when I started at the Jewish Lyceum, and now shes mybest friend. Ilse is Hannelis best friend, and Sanne goes toanother school and has friends there.They gave me a beautiful book, Dutch Sasas and Lesends,but they gave me Volume II by mistake, so I exchanged twoother books for Volume I. Aunt Helene brought me a puzzle,Aunt Stephanie a darling brooch and Aunt Leny a terrificbook: Daisy Goes to the Mountains.This morning I lay in the bathtub thinking how wonderfulit would be if I had a dog like Rin Tin Tin. Id call him RinTin Tin too, and Id take him to school with me, where hecould stay in the janitors room or by the bicycle racks whenthe weather was good.
7. MONDAY, JUNE 15, 1942I had my birthday party on Sunday afternoon. The Rin TinTin movie was a big hit with my classmates. I got twobrooches, a bookmark and two books. Ill start by saying afew things about my school and my class, beginning with thestudents.Betty Bloemendaal looks kind of poor, and I think sheprobably is. She lives on some obscure street in WestAmsterdam, and none of us know where it is. She does verywell at school, but thats because she works so hard, notbecause shes so smart. Shes pretty quiet.Jacqueline van Maarsen is supposedly my best friend, butIve never had a real friend. At first I thought Jacque wouldbe one, but I was badly mistaken.D.Q.* [* Initials have been assigned at random to thosepersons who prefer to remain anonymous.] is a very nervousgirl whos always forgetting things, so the teachers keepassigning her extra homework as punishment. Shes very kind,especially to G.Z.E.S. talks so much it isnt funny. Shes always touchingyour hair or fiddling with your buttons when she asks yousomething. They say she cant stand me, but I dont care,since I dont like her much either.Henny Mets is a nice girl with a cheerful disposition,except that she talks in a loud voice and is really childishwhen were playing outdoors. Unfortunately, Henny has agirlfriend named Beppy whos a bad influence on her becauseshes dirty and vulgar.J.R. - I could write a whole book about her. J. is adetestable, sneaky, stuck-up, two-faced gossip who thinksshes so grown-up. Shes really got Jacque under her spell,and thats a shame. J. is easily offended, bursts into tearsat the slightest thing and, to top it all off, is a terribleshow-off. Miss J. always has to be right. Shes very rich,and has a closet full of the most adorable dresses that areway too old for her. She thinks shes gorgeous, but shesnot. J. and I cant stand each other.
8. Ilse Wagner is a nice girl with a cheerful disposition,but shes extremely fInicky and can spend hours moaning andgroaning about something. Ilse likes me a lot. Shes verysmart, but lazy.Hanneli Goslar, or Lies as shes called at school, is abit on the strange side. Shes usually shy -- outspoken athorne, but reserved around other people. She blabs whateveryou tell her to her mother. But she says what she thinks, andlately Ive corne to appreciate her a great deal.Nannie van Praag-Sigaar is small, funny and sensible. Ithink shes nice. Shes pretty smart. There isnt much elseyou can say about Nannie. Eefje de Jong is, in my opinion,terrific. Though shes only twelve, shes quite the lady. Sheacts as if I were a baby. Shes also very helpful, and I likeher.G.Z. is the prettiest girl in our class. She has a niceface, but is kind of dumb. I think theyre going to hold herback a year, but of course I havent told her that.COMMENT ADDED BY ANNE AT A LATER DATE: To my areatsurprise, G.Z. wasnt held back a year after all.And sitting next to G.Z. is the last of us twelve girls,me.Theres a lot to be said about the boys, or maybe not somuch after all.Maurice Coster is one of my many admirers, but pretty muchof a pest. Sallie Springer has a filthy mind, and rumor hasit that hes gone all the way. Still, I think hes terrific,because hes very funny.Emiel Bonewit is G.Z.s admirer, but she doesnt care.Hes pretty boring. Rob Cohen used to be in love with me too,but I cant stand him anymore. Hes an obnoxious, two-faced,lying, sniveling little goof who has an awfully high opinionof himself.Max van de Velde is a farm boy from Medemblik, but
9. eminently suitable, as Margot would say.Herman Koopman also has a filthy mind, just like Jopie deBeer, whos a terrible flirt and absolutely girl-crazy.Leo Blom is Jopie de Beers best friend, but has beenruined by his dirty mind.Albert de Mesquita came from the Montessori School andskipped a grade. Hes really smart.Leo Slager came from the same school, but isnt as smart.Ru Stoppelmon is a short, goofy boy from Almelo whotransferred to this school in the middle of the year.C.N. does whatever hes not supposed to.Jacques Kocernoot sits behind us, next to C., and we (G.and I) laugh ourselves silly.Harry Schaap is the most decent boy in our class. Hesnice.Werner Joseph is nice too, but all the changes takingplace lately have made him too quiet, so he seems boring. SamSalomon is one of those tough guys from across the tracks. Areal brat. (Admirer!)Appie Riem is pretty Orthodox, but a brat too.SATURDAY, JUNE 20,1942Writing in a diary is a really strange experience forsomeone like me. Not only because Ive never written anythingbefore, but also because it seems to me that later on neitherI nor anyone else will be interested in the musings of athirteen-year-old schoolgirl. Oh well, it doesnt matter. Ifeel like writing, and I have an even greater need to get allkinds of things off my chest."Paper has more patience than people." I thought of thissaying on one of those days when I was feeling a littledepressed and was sitting at home with my chin in my hands,
10. bored and listless, wondering whether to stay in or go out. Ifinally stayed where I was, brooding. Yes, paper does havemore patience, and since Im not planning to let anyone elseread this stiff-backed notebook grandly referred to as a"diary," unless I should ever find a real friend, it probablywont make a bit of difference.Now Im back to the point that prompted me to keep a diaryin the first place: I dont have a friend.Let me put it more clearly, since no one will believe thata thirteen year-old girl is completely alone in the world.And Im not. I have loving parents and a sixteen-year-oldsister, and there are about thirty people I can call friends.I have a throng of admirers who cant keep their adoring eyesoff me and who sometimes have to resort to using a brokenpocket mirror to try and catch a glimpse of me in theclassroom. I have a family, loving aunts and a good home. No,on the surface I seem to have everything, except my one truefriend. All I think about when Im with friends is having agood time. I cant bring myself to talk about anything butordinary everyday things. We dont seem to be able to get anycloser, and thats the problem. Maybe its my fault that wedont confide in each other. In any case, thats just howthings are, and unfortunately theyre not liable to change.This is why Ive started the diary.To enhance the image of this long-awaited friend in myimagination, I dont want to jot down the facts in this diarythe way most people would do, but I want the diary to be myfriend, and Im going to call this friend Kitty.Since no one would understand a word of my stories toKitty if I were to plunge right in, Id better provide abrief sketch of my life, much as I dislike doing so.My father, the most adorable father Ive ever seen, didntmarry my mother until he was thirty-six and she wastwenty-five. My sister Margot was born in Frankfurt am Mainin Germany in 1926. I was born on June 12, 1929. I lived inFrankfurt until I was four. Because were Jewish, my fatherimmigrated to Holland in 1933, when he became the ManagingDirector of the Dutch Opekta Company, which manufacturesproducts used in making jam. My mother, Edith Hollander
11. Frank, went with him to Holland in September, while Margotand I were sent to Aachen to stay with our grandmother.Margot went to Holland in December, and I followed inFebruary, when I was plunked down on the table as a birthdaypresent for Margot.I started right away at the Montessori nursery school. Istayed there until I was six, at which time I started firstgrade. In sixth grade my teacher was Mrs. Kuperus, theprincipal. At the end of the year we were both in tears as wesaid a heartbreaking farewell, because Id been accepted atthe Jewish Lyceum, where Margot also went to school.Our lives were not without anxiety, since our relatives inGermany were suffering under Hitlers anti-Jewish laws. Afterthe pogroms in 1938 my two uncles (my mothers brothers) fledGermany, finding safe refuge in North America. My elderlygrandmother came to live with us. She was seventy-three yearsold at the time.After May 1940 the good times were few and far between:first there was the war, then the capitulation and then thearrival of the Germans, which is when the trouble started forthe Jews. Our freedom was severely restricted by a series ofanti-Jewish decrees: Jews were required to wear a yellowstar; Jews were required to turn in their bicycles; Jews wereforbidden to use street-cars; Jews were forbidden to ride incars, even their own; Jews were required to do their shoppingbetween 3 and 5 P.M.; Jews were required to frequent onlyJewish-owned barbershops and beauty parlors; Jews wereforbidden to be out on the streets between 8 P.M. and 6 A.M.;Jews were forbidden to attend theaters, movies or any otherforms of entertainment; Jews were forbidden to use swimmingpools, tennis courts, hockey fields or any other athleticfields; Jews were forbidden to go rowing; Jews were forbiddento take part in any athletic activity in public; Jews wereforbidden to sit in their gardens or those of their friendsafter 8 P.M.; Jews were forbidden to visit Christians intheir homes; Jews were required to attend Jewish schools,etc. You couldnt do this and you couldnt do that, but lifewent on. Jacque always said to me, "I dont dare do anythinganymore, cause Im afraid its not allowed."In the summer of 1941 Grandma got sick and had to have an
12. operation, so my birthday passed with little celebration. Inthe summer of 1940 we didnt do much for my birthday either,since the fighting had just ended in Holland. Grandma died inJanuary 1942. No one knows how often I think of her and stilllove her. This birthday celebration in 1942 was intended tomake up for the others, and Grandmas candle was lit alongwith the rest.The four of us are still doing well, and that brings me tothe present date of June 20, 1942, and the solemn dedicationof my diary.SATURDAY, JUNE 20, 1942Dearest Kitty! Let me get started right away; its niceand quiet now. Father and Mother are out and Margot has goneto play Ping-Pong with some other young people at her friendTreess. Ive been playing a lot of Ping-Pong myself lately.So much that five of us girls have formed a club. Its called"The Little Dipper Minus Two." A really silly name, but itsbased on a mistake. We wanted to give our club a specialname; and because there were five of us, we came up with theidea of the Little Dipper. We thought it consisted of fivestars, but we turned out to be wrong. It has seven, like theBig Dipper, which explains the "Minus Two." Ilse Wagner has aPing-Pong set, and the Wagners let us play in their bigdining room whenever we want. Since we five Ping-Pong playerslike ice cream, especially in the summer, and since you gethot playing Ping-Pong, our games usually end with a visit tothe nearest ice-cream parlor that allows Jews: either Oasisor Delphi. Weve long since stopped hunting around for ourpurses or money -- most of the time its so busy in Oasisthat we manage to find a few generous young men of ouracquaintance or an admirer to offer us more ice cream than wecould eat in a week.Youre probably a little surprised to hear me talkingabout admirers at such a tender age. Unfortunately, or not,as the case may be, this vice seems to be rampant at ourschool. As soon as a boy asks if he can bicycle home with meand we get to talking, nine times out of ten I can be surehell become enamored on the spot and wont let me out of hissight for a second. His ardor eventually cools, especiallysince I ignore his passionate glances and pedal blithely on
13. my way. If it gets so bad that they start rambling on about"asking Fathers permission," I swerve slightly on my bike,my schoolbag falls, and the young man feels obliged to getoff his bike and hand me the bag, by which time Ive switchedthe conversation to another topic. These are the mostinnocent types. Of course, there are those who blow youkisses or try to take hold of your arm, but theyredefinitely knocking on the wrong door. I get off my bike andeither refuse to make further use of their company or act asif Im insulted and tell them in no uncertain terms to go onhome without me. There you are. Weve now laid the basis forour friendship. Until tomorrow.Yours, AnneSUNDAY, JUNE 21, 1942Dearest Kitty,Our entire class is quaking in its boots. The reason, ofcourse, is the upcoming meeting in which the teachers decidewholl be promoted to the next grade and wholl be kept back.Half the class is making bets. G.Z. and I laugh ourselvessick at the two boys behind us, C.N. and Jacques Kocernoot,who have staked their entire vacation savings on their bet.From morning to night, its "Youre going to pass, No, Imnot," "Yes, you are," "No, Im not." Even G.s pleadingglances and my angry outbursts cant calm them down. If youask me, there are so many dummies that about a quarter of theclass should be kept back, but teachers are the mostunpredictable creatures on earth. Maybe this time theyll beunpredictable in the right direction for a change. Im not soworried about my girlfriends and myself.Well make it. The only subject Im not sure about ismath. Anyway, all we can do is wait. Until then, we keeptelling each other not to lose heart.I get along pretty well with all my teachers. There arenine of them, seven men and two women. Mr. Keesing, the oldfogey who teaches math, was mad at me for the longest timebecause I talked so much. After several warnings, he assignedme extra homework. An essay on the subject "A Chatterbox." Achatterbox, what can you write about that? Id wbrry about
14. that later, I decided. I jotted down the assignment in mynotebook, tucked it in my bag and tried to keep quiet.That evening, after Id finished the rest of my homework,the note about the essay caught my eye. I began thinkingabout the subject while chewing the tip of my fountain pen.Anyone could ramble on and leave big spaces between thewords, but the trick was to come up with convincing argumentsto prove the necessity of talking. I thought and thought, andsuddenly I had an idea. I wrote the three pages Mr. Keesinghad assigned me and was satisfied. I argued that talking is afemale trait and that I would do my best to keep it undercontrol, but that I would never be able to break myself ofthe habit, since my mother talked as much as I did, if notmore, and that theres not much you can do about inheritedtraits.Mr. Keesing had a good laugh at my arguments, but when Iproceeded to talk my way through the next class, he assignedme a second essay. This time it was supposed to be on "AnIncorrigible Chatterbox." I handed it in, and Mr. Keesing hadnothing to complain about for two whole classes. However,during the third class hed finally had enough. "Anne Frank,as punishment for talking in class, write an essay entitledQuack, Quack, Quack, said Mistress Chatterback."The class roared. I had to laugh too, though Id ) nearlyexhausted my ingenuity on the topic of chatterboxes. It wastime to come up with something else, j something original. Myfriend Sanne, whos good at poetry, offered to help me writethe essay from beginning to end in verse. I jumped for joy.Keesing was trying to play a joke on me with this ridiculoussubject, but Id make sure the joke was on him. I finished mypoem, and it was beautiful! It was about a mother duck and afather swan with three baby ducklings who were bitten todeath by the father because they quacked too much. Luckily,Keesing took the joke the right way. He read the poem to theclass, adding his own comments, and to several other classesas well. Since then Ive been allowed to talk and haventbeen assigned any extra homework. On the contrary, Keesingsalways i making jokes these days.Yours, Anne
15. WEDNESDAY, JUNE 24, 1942Dearest Kitty,Its sweltering. Everyone is huffing and puffing, and inthis heat I have to walk everywhere. Only now do I realizehow pleasant a streetcar is, but we Jews are no longerallowed to make use of this luxury; our own two feet are goodenough for us. Yesterday at lunchtime I had an appointmentwith the dentist on Jan Luykenstraat. Its a long way fromour school on Stadstimmertuinen. That afternoon I nearly fellasleep at my desk. Fortunately, people automatically offeryou something to drink. The dental assistant is really kind.The only mode of transportation left to us is the ferry.The ferryman at Josef Israelkade took us across when we askedhim to. Its not the fault of the Dutch that we Jews arehaving such a bad time.I wish I didnt have to go to school. My bike was stolenduring Easter vacation, and Father gave Mothers bike to someChristian friends for safekeeping. Thank goodness summervacation is almost here; one more week and our torment willbe over.Something unexpected happened yesterday morning. As I waspassing the bicycle racks, I heard my name being called. Iturned around and there was the nice boy Id met the eveningbefore at my friend Wilmas. Hes Wilmas second cousin. Iused to think Wilma was nice, which she is, but all she evertalks about is boys, and that gets to be a bore. He cametoward me, somewhat shyly, and introduced himself as HelloSilberberg. I was a little surprised and wasnt sure what hewanted, but it didnt take me long to find out. He asked if Iwould allow him to accompany me to school. "As long as youreheaded that way, Ill go with you," I said. And so we walkedtogether. Hello is sixteen and good at telling all kinds offunny stories.He was waiting for me again this morning, and I expect hewill be from now on.Anne
16. WEDNESDAY, JULY 1, 1942Dearest Kitty,Until today I honestly couldnt find the time to writeyou. I was with friends all day Thursday, we had company onFriday, and thats how it went until today.Hello and I have gotten to know each other very well thispast week, and hes told me a lot about his life. He comesfrom Gelsenkirchen and is living with his grandparents. Hisparents are in Belgium, but theres no way he can get there.Hello used to have a girlfriend named Ursula. I know her too.Shes perfectly sweet and perfectly boring. Ever since he metme, Hello has realized that hes been falling asleep atUrsuls side. So Im kind of a pep tonic. You never know whatyoure good for!Jacque spent Saturday night here. Sunday afternoon she wasat Hannelis, and I was bored stiff.Hello was supposed to come over that evening, but hecalled around six. I answered the phone, and he said, "Thisis Helmuth Silberberg. May I please speak to Anne?""Oh, Hello. This is Anne.""Oh, hi, Anne. How are you?" ""Fine, thanks.""I just wanted to say Im sorry but I cant come tonight,though I would like to have a word with you. Is it all rightif I come by and pick you up in about ten minutes"Yes, thats fine. Bye-bye!""Okay, Ill be right over. Bye-bye!"I hung up, quickly changed my clothes and fixed my hair. Iwas so nervous I leaned out the window to watch for him. Hefinally showed up. Miracle of miracles, I didnt rush downthe stairs, but waited quietly until he rang the bell. I wentdown to open the door, and he got right to the point.
17. "Anne, my grandmother thinks youre too young for me to beseeing you on a regular basis. She says I should be going tothe Lowenbachs, but you probably know that Im not going outwith Ursul anymore.""No, I didnt know. What happened? Did you two have afight?""No, nothing like that. I told Ursul that we werentsuited to each other and so it was better for us not to gotogether anymore, but that she was welcome at my house and Ihoped I would be welcome at hers. Actually, I thought Ursulwas hanging around with another boy, and I treated her as ifshe were. But that wasnt true. And then my uncle said Ishould apologize to her, but of course I didnt feel like it,and thats why I broke up with her. But that was just one ofthe reasons."Now my grandmother wants me to see Ursul and not you, butI dont agree and Im not going to. Sometimes old people havereally old-fashioned ideas, but that doesnt mean I have togo along with them. I need my grandparents, but in a certainsense they need me too. From now on Ill be free on Wednesdayevenings. You see, my grandparents made me sign up for awood-carving class, but actually I go to a club organized bythe Zionists. My grandparents dont want me to go, becausetheyre anti-Zionists. Im not a fanatic Zionist, but itinterests me. Anyway, its been such a mess lately that Implanning to quit. So next Wednesday will be my last meeting.That means I can see you Wednesday evening, Saturdayafternoon, Saturday evening, Sunday afternoon and maybe evenmore.""But if your grandparents dont want you to, you?shouldnt go behind their backs.""Alls fair in love and war."Just then we passed Blankevoorts Bookstore and there wasPeter Schiff with two other boys; it was the first time hedsaid hello to me in ages, and it really made me feel good.Monday evening Hello came over to meet Father and Mother.
18. I had bought a cake and some candy, and we had tea andcookies, the works, but neither Hello nor I felt like sittingstiffly on our chairs. So we went out for a walk, and hedidnt deliver me to my door until ten past eight. Father wasfurious. He said it was very wrong of me not to get home ontime. I had to promise to be home by ten to eight in thefuture. Ive been asked to Hellos on Saturday.Wilma told me that one night when Hello was at her house,she asked him, "Who do you like best, Ursul or Anne?"He said, "Its none of your business."But as he was leaving (they hadnt talked to each otherthe rest of the evening), he said, "Well, I like Anne better,but dont tell anyone. Bye!" And whoosh. . . he was out thedoor.In everything he says or does, I can see that Hello is inlove with me, and its kind of nice for a change. Margotwould say that Hello is eminently suitable. I think so too,but hes more than that. Mother is also full of praise: "Agood-looking boy. Nice and polite." Im glad hes so popularwith everyone. Except with my girlfriends. He thinks theyrevery childish, and hes right about that. Jacque still teasesme about him, but Im not in love with him. Not really. Itsall right for me to have boys as friends. Nobody minds.Mother is always asking me who Im going to marry when Igrow up, but I bet shell never guess its Peter, because Italked her out of that idea myself, without batting aneyelash. I love Peter as Ive never loved anyone, and I tellmyself hes only going around with all those other girls tohide his feelings for me. Maybe he thinks Hello and I are inlove with each other, which were not. Hes just a friend, oras Mother puts it, a beau.Yours, AnneSUNDAY, JULY 5, 1942Dear Kitty,The graduation ceremony in the Jewish Theater on Friday
19. went as expected. My report card wasnt too bad. I got one D,a C- in algebra and all the rest Bs, except for two B+s andtwo B-s. My parents are pleased, but theyre not like otherparents when it comes to grades. They never worry aboutreport cards, good or bad. As long as Im healthy and happyand dont talk back too much, theyre satisfied. If thesethree things are all right, everything else will take care ofitself.Im just the opposite. I dont want to be a poor student.I was accepted to the Jewish Lyceum on a conditional basis. Iwas supposed to stay in the seventh grade at the MontessoriSchool, but when Jewish children were required to go toJewish schools, Mr. Elte finally agreed, after a great dealof persuasion, to accept Lies Goslar and me. Lies also passedthis year, though she has to repeat her geometry exam.Poor Lies. It isnt easy for her to study at home; herbaby sister, a spoiled little two-year-old, plays in her roomall day. If Gabi doesnt get her way, she starts screaming,and if Lies doesnt look after her, Mrs. Goslar startsscreaming. So Lies has a hard time doing her homework, and aslong as thats the case, the tutoring shes been gettingwont help much. The Goslar household is really a sight. Mrs.Goslars parents live next door, but eat with the family. Thetheres a hired girl, the baby, the always absentminded andabsent Mr. Goslar and the always nervous and irrita Ie Mrs.Goslar, whos expecting another baby. Lies, whos all thumbs,gets lost in the mayhem.My sister Margot has also gotten her report card.Brilliant, as usual. If we had such a thing as "cumlaude," she would have passed with honors, shes so smart.Father has been home a lot lately. Theres nothing for himto do at the office; it must be awful to feel youre notneeded. Mr. Kleiman has taken over Opekta, and Mr. Kugler,Gies & Co., the company dealing in spices and spicesubstitutes that was set up in 1941.A few days ago, as we were taking a stroll around ourneighborhood square, Father began to talk about going intohiding. He said it would be very hard for us to live cut off
20. from the rest of the world. I asked him why he was bringingthis up now."Well, Anne," he replied, "you know that for more than ayear weve been bringing clothes, food and furniture to otherpeople. We dont want our belongings to be seized by theGermans. Nor do we want to fall into their clutchesourselves. So well leave of our own accord and not wait tobe hauled away.""But when, Father?" He sounded so serious that I feltscared."Dont you worry. Well take care of everything. justenjoy your carefree life while you can."That was it. Oh, may these somber words not come true foras long as possible.The doorbells ringing, Hellos here, time to stop.Yours, AnneWEDNESDAY, JULY 8, 1942Dearest Kitty,It seems like years since Sunday morning. So much hashappened its as if the whole world had suddenly turnedupside down. But as you can see, Kitty, Im still alive, andthats the main thing, Father says. Im alive all right, butdont ask where or how. You probably dont understand a wordIm saying today, so Ill begin by telling you what happenedSunday afternoon.At three oclock (Hello had left but was supposed to comeback later), the doorbell rang. I didnt hear it, since I wasout on the balcony, lazily reading in the sun. A little whilelater Margot appeared in the kitchen doorway looking veryagitated. "Father has received a call-up notice from the SS,"she whispered. "Mother has gone to see Mr. van Daan" (Mr. vanDaan is Fathers business partner and a good friend.)I was stunned. A call-up: everyone knows what that means.
21. Visions of concentration camps and lonely cells raced throughmy head. How could we let Father go to such a fate? "Ofcourse hes not going," declared Margot as we waited forMother in the living room. "Mothers gone to Mr. van Daan toask whether we can move to our hiding place tomorrow. The vanDaans are going with us. There will be seven of usaltogether." Silence. We couldnt speak. The thought ofFather off visiting someone in the Jewish Hospital andcompletely unaware of what was happening, the long wait forMother, the heat, the suspense -- all this reduced us tosilence.Suddenly the doorbell rang again. "Thats Hello," I said."Dont open the door!" exclaimed Margot to stop me. But itwasnt necessary, since we heard Mother and Mr. van Daandownstairs talking to Hello, and then the two of them cameinside and shut the door behind them. Every time the bellrang, either Margot or I had to tiptoe downstairs to see ifit was Father, and we didnt let anyone else in. Margot and Iwere sent from the room, as Mr. van Daan wanted to talk toMother alone.When she and I were sitting in our bedroom, Margot told methat the call-up was not for Father, but for her. At thissecond shock, I began to cry. Margot is sixteen -- apparentlythey want to send girls her age away on their own. But thankgoodness she wont be going; Mother had said so herself,which must be what Father had meant when he talked to meabout our going into hiding. Hiding. . . where would we hide?In the city? In the country? In a house? In a shack? When,where, how. . . ? These were questions I wasnt allowed toask, but they still kept running through my mind.Margot and I started packing our most important belongingsinto a schoolbag. The first thing I stuck in was this diary,and then curlers, handkerchiefs, schoolbooks, a comb and someold letters. Preoccupied by the thought of going into hiding,I stuck the craziest things in the bag, but Im not sorry.Memories mean more to me than dresses.Father finally came hQme around five oclock, and wecalled Mr. Kleiman to ask if he could come by that evening.Mr. van Daan left and went to get Miep. Miep arrived and
22. promised to return later that night, taking with her a bagfull of shoes, dresses, jackets, underwear and stockings.After that it was quiet in our apartment; none of us feltlike eating. It was still hot, and everything was verystrange.We had rented our big upstairs room to a Mr. Goldschmidt,a divorced man in his thirties, who apparently had nothing todo that evening, since despite all our polite hints he hungaround until ten oclock.Miep and Jan Gies came at eleven. Miep, whos worked forFathers company since 1933, has become a close friend, andso has her husband Jan. Once again, shoes, stockings, booksand underwear disappeared into Mieps bag and Jans deeppockets. At eleven-thirty they too disappeared.I was exhausted, and even though I knew itd be my lastnight in my own bed, I fell asleep right away and didnt wakeup until Mother called me at five-thirty the next morning.Fortunately, it wasnt as hot as Sunday; a warm rain fellthroughout the day. The four of us were wrapped in so manylayers of clothes it looked as if we were going off to spendthe night in a refrigerator, and all that just so we couldtake more clothes with us. No Jew in our situation would dareleave the house with a suitcase full of clothes. I waswearing two undershirts, three pairs of underpants, a dress,and over that a skirt, a jacket, a raincoat, two pairs ofstockings, heavy shoes, a cap, a scarf and lots more. I wassuffocating even before we left the house, but no onebothered to ask me how I felt.Margot stuffed her schoolbag with schoolbooks, went to gether bicycle and, with Miep leading the way, rode off into thegreat unknown. At any rate, thats how I thought of it, sinceI still didnt know where our hiding place was.At seven-thirty we too closed the door behind us; Moortje,my cat, was the only living creature I said good-bye to.According to a note we left for Mr. Goldschmidt, she was tobe taken to the neighbors, who would give her a good home.The stripped beds, the breakfast things on the table, thepound of meat for the cat in the kitchen -- all of these
23. created the impression that wed left in a hurry. But wewerent interested in impressions. We just wanted to get outof there, to get away and reach our destination in safety.Nothing else mattered.More tomorrow.Yours, AnneTHURSDAY, JULY 9, 1942Dearest Kitty,So there we were, Father, Mother and I, walking in thepouring rain, each of us with a schoolbag and a shopping bagfilled to the brim with the most varied assortment of items.The people on their way to work at that early hour gave ussympathetic looks; you could tell by their faces that theywere sorry they couldnt offer us some kind oftransportation; the conspicuous yellow star spoke for itself.Only when we were walking down the street did Father andMother reveal, little by little, what the plan was. Formonths wed been moving as much of our furniture and apparelout of the apartment as we could. It was agreed that wed gointo hiding on July 16. Because of Margots call-up notice,the plan had to be moved up ten days, which meant wed haveto make do with less orderly rooms.The hiding place was located in Fathers office building.Thats a little hard for outsiders to understand, so Illexplain. Father didnt have a lot of people working in hisoffice, just Mr. Kugler, Mr. Kleiman, Miep and atwenty-three-year-old typist named Bep Voskuijl, all of whomwere informed of our coming. Mr. Voskuijl, Beps father,works in the warehouse, along with two assistants, none ofwhom were told anything.Heres a description of the building. The large warehouseon the ground floor is used as a workroom and storeroom andis divided into several different sections, such as thestockroom and the milling room, where cinnamon, cloves and apepper substitute are ground.
24. Next to the warehouse doors is another outside door, aseparate entrance to the office. Just inside the office dooris a second door, and beyond that a stairway. At the top ofthe stairs is another door, with a frosted window on whichthe word "Office" is written in black letters. This is thebig front office -- very large, very light and very full.Bep, Miep and Mr. Kleiman work there during the day. Afterpassing through an alcove containing a safe, a wardrobe and abig supply cupboard, you come to the small, dark, stuffy backoffice. This used to be shared by Mr. Kugler and Mr. vanDaan, but now Mr. Kugler is its only occupant. Mr. Kuglersoffice can also be reached from the hallway, but only througha glass door that can be opened from the inside but noteasily from the outside. If you leave Mr. Kuglers office andproceed through the long, narrow hallway past the coal binand go up four steps, you find yourself in the privateoffice, the showpiece of the entire building. Elegantmahogany furniture, a linoleum floor covered with throw rugs,a radio, a fancy lamp, everything first class. Next door is aspacious kitchen with a hot-water heater and two gas burners,and beside that a bathroom. Thats the second floor.A wooden staircase leads from the downstairs hallway tothe third floor. At the top of the stairs is a landing, withdoors on either side. The door on the left takes you up tothe spice storage area, attic and loft in the front part ofthe house. A typically Dutch, very steep, ankle-twistingflight of stairs also runs from the front part of the houseto another door opening onto the street.The door to the right of the landing leads to the "SecretAnnex" at the back ofthe house. No one would ever suspectthere were so many rooms behind that plain gray door. Theresjust one small step in front of the door, and then youreinside. Straight ahead of you is a steep flight of stairs. Tothe left is a narrow hallway opening onto a room that servesas the Frank familys living[INSERT MAP HERE]room and bedroom. Next door is a smaller room, the )edroomand study of the two young ladies of the family. ro the rightof the stairs is a windowless washroom. with a link. The doorin the corner leads to the toilet and another one to Margots
25. and my room. If you go up the itairs and open the door at thetop, youre surprised to see such a large, light and spaciousroom in an old canalside house like this. It contains a stove(thanks to the fact hat it used to be Mr. Kuglerslaboratory) and a sink.This will be the kitchen and bedroom of Mr. and Mrs. vanDaan, as well as the general living room, dining room andstudy for us all. A tiny side room is to be Peter van Daansbedroom. Then, just as in the front part of the building,theres an attic and a loft. So there you are. Now Iveintroduced you to the whole of our lovely Annex!Yours, AnneFRIDAY, JULY 10, 1942Dearest Kitty, Ive probably bored you with my longdescription of our house, but I still think you should knowwhere Ive ended up; how I ended up here is something youllfigure out from my next letters.But first, let me continue my story, because, as you know,I wasnt finished. After we arrived at 263 Prinsengracht,Miep quickly led us through the long hallway and up thewooden staircase to the next floor and into the Annex. Sheshut the door behind us, leaving us alone. Margot had arrivedmuch earlier on her bike and was waiting for us.Our living room and all the other rooms were so full ofstuff that I cant find the words to describe it. All thecardboard boxes that had been sent to the office in the lastfew months were piled on the floors and beds. The small roomwas filled from floor to cethng with linens. If we wanted tosleep in properly made beds that night, we had to get goingand straighten up the mess. Mother and Margot were unable tomove a muscle. They lay down on their bare mattresses, tired,miserable and I dont know what else. But Father and I, thetwo cleaner-uppers in the family, started in right away.All day long we unpacked boxes, filled cupboards, hammerednails and straightened up the mess, until we fell exhaustedinto our clean beds at night. We hadnt eaten a hot meal allday, but we didnt care; Mother and Margot were too tired and
26. keyed up to eat, and Father and I were too busy.Tuesday morning we started where we left off the nightbefore. Bep and Miep went grocery shopping with our rationcoupons, Father worked on our blackout screens, we scrubbedthe kitchen floor, and were once again busy from sunup tosundown. Until Wednesday, I didnt have a chance to thinkabout the enormous change in my life. Then for the first timesince our arrival in the Secret Annex, I found a moment totell you all about it and to realize what had happened to meand what was yet to happen.Yours, AnneSATURDAY, JULY 11, 1942Dearest Kitty,Father, Mother and Margot still cant get used to thechiming of the Westertoren clock, which tells us the timeevery quarter of an hour. Not me, I liked it from the start;it sounds so reassuring, especially at night. You no doubtwant to hear what I think of being in hiding. Well, all I cansay is that I dont really know yet. I dont think Ill everfeel at home in this house, but that doesnt mean I hate it.Its more like being on vacation in some strange pension.Kind of an odd way to look at life in hiding, but thats howthings are. The Annex is an ideal place to hide in. It may bedamp and lopsided, but theres probably not a morecomfortable hiding place in all of Amsterdam. No, in all ofHolland.Up to now our bedroom, with its blank walls, was verybare. Thanks to Father -- who brought my entire postcard andmovie-star collection here beforehand -- and to a brush and apot of glue, I was able to plaster the walls with pictures.It looks much more cheerful. When the van Daans arrive, wellbe able to build cupboards and other odds and ends out of thewood piled in the attic.Margot and Mother have recovered somewhat. YesterdayMother felt well enough to cook split-pea soup for the firsttime, but then she was downstairstalking and forgot all aboutit. The beans were scorched black, and no amount of scraping
27. could get them out of the pan.Last night the four of us went down to the private officeand listened to England on the radio. I was so scared someonemight hear it that I literally begged Father to take me backupstairs. Mother understood my anxiety and went with me.Whatever we do, were very afraid the neighbors might hear orsee us. We started off immediately the first day sewingcurtains. Actually, you can hardly call them that, sincetheyre nothing but scraps of fabric, varying greatly inshape, quality and pattern, which Father and I stitchedcrookedly together with unskilled fingers. These works of artwere tacked to the windows, where theyll stay until we comeout of hiding.The building on our right is a branch of the Keg Company,a firm from Zaandam, and on the left is a furniture workshop.Though the people who work there are not on the premisesafter hours, any sound we make might travel through thewalls. Weve forbidden Margot to cough at night, even thoughshe has a bad cold, and are giving her large doses ofcodeine.Im looking forward to the arrival of the van Daans, whichis set for Tuesday. It will be much more fun and also not asquiet. You see, its the silence that makes me so nervousduring the evenings and nights, and Id give anything to haveone of our helpers sleep here.Its really not that bad here, since we can do our owncooking and can listen to the radio in Daddys office.Mr. Kleiman and Miep, and Bep Voskuijl too, have helped usso much. Weve already canned loads of rhubarb, strawberriesand cherries, so for the time being I doubt well be bored.We also have a supply of reading material, and were going tobuy lots of games. Of course, we cant ever look out thewindow or go outside. And we have to be quiet so the peopledownstairs cant hear us.Yesterday we had our hands full. We had to pit two cratesof cherries for Mr. Kugler to can. Were going to use theempty crates to make bookshelves.
28. Someones calling me.Yours, AnneCOMMENT ADDED BY ANNE ON SEPTEMBER 2g, 1942: Not beinaable to ao outside upsets me more than I can say, and Imterrified our hidina place will be discovered and that wellbe shot. That, of course, is a fairly dismal prospect.SUNDAY, JULY 12, 1942Theyve all been so nice to me this last month because ofmy birthday, and yet every day I feel myself drifting furtheraway from Mother and Margot. I worked hard today and theypraised me, only to start picking on me again five minuteslater.You can easily see the difference between the way theydeal with Margot and the way they deal with me. For example,Margot broke the vacuum cleaner, and because of that wevebeen without light for the rest of the day. Mother said,"Well, Margot, its easy to see youre not used to working;otherwise, youd have known better than to yank the plug outby the cord." Margot made some reply, and that was the end ofthe story.But this afternoon, when I wanted to rewrite something onMothers shopping list because her handwriting is so hard toread, she wouldnt let me. She bawled me out again, and thewhole family wound up getting involved.I dont fit in with them, and Ive felt that clearly inthe last few weeks. Theyre so sentimental together, but Idrather be sentimental on my own. Theyre always saying hownice it is with the four of us, and that we get along sowell, without giving a moments thought to the fact that Idont feel that way.Daddys the only one who understands me, now and again,though he usually sides with Mother and Margot. Another thingI cant stand is having them talk about me in front ofoutsiders, telling them how I cried or how sensibly Imbehaving. Its horrible. And sometimes they talk aboutMoortje and I cant take that at all. Moortje is my weak
29. spot. I miss her every minute of the day, and no one knowshow often I think of her; whenever I do, my eyes fill withtears. Moortje is so sweet, and I love her so much that Ikeep dreaming shell come back to us.I have plenty of dreams, but the reality is that wellhave to stay here until the war is over. We cant ever gooutside, and the only visitors we can have are Miep, herhusband Jan, Bep Voskuijl, Mr. Voskuijl, Mr. Kugler, Mr.Kleiman and Mrs. Kleiman, though she hasnt come because shethinks its too dangerous.COMMENT ADDED BY ANNE IN SEPTEMBER 1942: Daddys always sonice. He understands me perfectly, and I wish we could have aheart-to-heart talk sometime without my bursting instantlyinto tears. But apparently that has to do with my age. Idlike to spend all my time writing, but that would probablyget boring.Up to now Ive only confided my thoughts to my diary. Istill havent gotten around to writing amusing sketches thatI could read aloud at a later date. In the future Im goingto devote less time to sentimentality and more time toreality.FRIDAY, AUGUST 14, 1942Dear Kitty,Ive deserted you for an entire month, but so little hashappened that I cant find a newsworthy item to relate everysingle day. The van Daans arrived on July 13. We thought theywere coming on the fourteenth, but from the thirteenth tosixteenth the Germans were sending out call-up notices rightand left and causing a lot of unrest, so they decided itwould be safer to leave a day too early than a day too late.Peter van Daan arrived at nine-thirty in the morning(while we were still at breakfast). Peters going on sixteen,a shy, awkward boy whose company wont amount to much. Mr.and Mrs. van Daan came half an hour later.Much to our amusement, Mrs. van Daan was carrying a hatboxwith a large chamber pot inside. "I just dont feel at home
30. without my chamber pot," she exclaimed, and it was the firstitem to find a permanent place under the divan. Instead of achamber pot, Mr. van D. was lugging a collapsible tea tableunder his arm.From the first, we ate our meals together, and after threedays it felt as if the seven of us had become one big family.Naturally, the van Daans had much to tell about the week wedbeen away from civilization. We were especially interested inwhat had happened to our apartment and to Mr. Goldschmidt.Mr. van Daan filled us in: "Monday morning at nine, Mr.Goldschmidt phoned and asked if I could come over. I wentstraightaway and found a very distraught Mr. Goldschmidt. Heshowed me a note that the Frank family had left behind. Asinstructed, he was planning to bring the cat to theneighbors, which I agreed was a good idea. He was afraid thehouse was going to be searched, so we w=nt through all therooms, straightening up here and there and clearing thebreakfast things off the table. Suddenly I saw a notepad onMrs. Franks desk, with an address in Maastricht written onit. Even though I knew Mrs. Frank had left it on purpose, Ipretended to be surprised and horrified and begged Mr.Goldschmidt to burn this incriminating piece of paper. Iswore up and down that I knew nothing about yourdisappearance, but that the note had given me an idea. Mr.Goldschmidt, I said, I bet I know what this address refersto. About six months ago a high-ranking officer came to theoffice. It seems he and Mr. Frank grew up together. Hepromised to help Mr. Frank if it was ever necessary. As Irecall, he was stationed in Maastricht. I think this officerhas kept his word and is somehow planning to help them crossover to Belgium and then to Switzerland. Theres no harm intelling this to any friends of the Franks who come askingabout them. Of course, you dont need to mention the partabout Maastricht. And after that I left. This is the storymost of your friends have been told, because I heard it laterfrom several other people."We thought it was extremely funny, but we laughed evenharder when Mr. van Daan told us that certain people havevivid imaginations. For example, one family living on oursquare claimed they sawall four of us riding by on our bikesearly in the morning, and another woman was absolutely
31. positive wed been loaded into some kind of military vehiclein the middle of the night.Yours, AnneFRIDAY, AUGUST 21, 1942Dear Kitty,Now our Secret Annex has truly become secret.Because so many houses are being searched for hiddenbicycles, Mr. Kugler thought it would be better to have abookcase built in front of the entrance to our hiding place.It swings out on its hinges and opens like a door. Mr.Voskuijl did the carpentry work. (Mr. Voskuijl has been toldthat the seven of us are in hiding, and hes been mosthelpful.)Now whenever we want to go downstairs we have to duck andthen jump. After the first three days we were all walkingaround with bumps on our foreheads from banging our headsagainst the low doorway. Then Peter cushioned it by nailing atowel stuffed with wood shavings to the doorframe. Lets seeif it helps!Im not doing much schoolwork. Ive given myself avacation until September. Father wants to start tutoring methen, but we have to buy all the books first.Theres little change in our lives here. Peters hair waswashed today, but thats nothing special. Mr. van Daan and Iare always at loggerheads with each other. Mama always treatsme like a baby, which I cant stand. For the rest, things aregoing better. I dont think Peters gotten any nicer. Hes anobnoxious boy who lies around on his bed all day, onlyrousing himself to do a little carpentry work beforereturning to his nap. What a dope!Mama gave me another one of her dreadful sermons thismorning. We take the opposite view of everything. Daddys asweetheart; he may get mad at me, but it never lasts longerthan five minutes.
32. Its a beautiful day outside, nice and hot, and in spiteof everything, we make the most of the weather by lounging onthe folding bed in the attic.Yours, AnneCOMMENT ADDED BY ANNE ON SEPTEMBER 21, 1942: Mr. van Daanhas been as nice as pie to me recently. Ive said nothina,but have been enjoyina it while it lasts.WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 2, 1942Dearest Kitty,Mr. and Mrs. van Daan have had a terrible fight. Ivenever seen anything like it, since Mother and Father wouldntdream of shouting at each other like that. The argument wasbased on something so trivial it didnt seem worth wasting asingle word on it. Oh well, to each his own.Of course, its very difficult for Peter, who gets caughtin the middle, but no one takes Peter seriously anymore,since hes hypersensitive and lazy. Yesterday he was besidehimself with worry because his tongue was blue instead ofpink. This rare phenomenon disappeared as quickly as it came.Today hes walking around with a heavy scarf on because hesgot a stiff neck. His Highness has been complaining oflumbago too. Aches and pains in his heart, kidneys and lungsare also par for the course. Hes an absolute hypochondriac!(Thats the right word, isnt it?)Mother and Mrs. van Daan arent getting along very well.There are enough reasons for the friction. To give you onesmall example, Mrs. van D. has removed all but three of hersheets from our communal linen closet. Shes assuming thatMothers can be used for both families. Shell be in for anasty surprise when she discovers that Mother has followedher lead.Furthermore, Mrs. van D. is ticked off because were usingher china instead of ours. Shes still trying to find outwhat weve done with our plates; theyre a lot closer thanshe thinks, since theyre packed in cardboard boxes in theattic, behind a load of Opekta advertising material. As long
33. as were in hiding, the plates will remain out of her reach.Since Im always having accidents, its just as well!Yesterday I broke one of Mrs. van D.s soup bowls."Oh!" she angrily exclaimed. "Cant you be more careful?That was my last one."Please bear in mind, Kitty, that the two ladies speakabominable Dutch (I dont dare comment on the gentlemen:theyd be highly insulted). If you were to hear their bungledattempts, youd laugh your head off. Weve given up pointingout their errors, since correcting them doesnt help anyway.Whenever I quote Mother or Mrs. van Daan, Ill write properDutch instead of trying to duplicate their speech.Last week there was a brief interruption in our monotonousroutine. This was provided by Peter -- and a book aboutwomen. I should explain that Margot and Peter are allowed toread nearly all the books Mr. Kleiman lends us. But theadults preferred to keep this special book to themselves.This immediately piqued Peters curiosity. What forbiddenfruit did it contain? He snuck off with it when his motherwas downstairs talking, and took himself and his booty to theloft. For two days all was well. Mrs. van Daan knew what hewas up to, but kept mum until Mr. van Daan found out aboutit. He threw a fit, took the book away and assumed that wouldbe the end of the business. However, hed neglected to takehis sons curiosity into account. Peter, not in the leastfazed by his fathers swift action, began thinking up ways toread the rest of this vastly interesting book.In the meantime, Mrs. van D. asked Mother for her opinion.Mother didnt think this particular book was suitable forMargot, but she saw no harm in letting her read most otherbooks.You see, Mrs. van Daan, Mother Said, theres a bigdifference between Margot and Peter. To begin with, Margotsa girl, and girls are always more mature than boys. Second,shes already read many serious books and doesnt go lookingfor those which are no longer forbidden. Third, Margots muchmore sensible and intellectually advanced, as a result of herfour years at an excellent school."
34. Mrs. van Daan agreed with her, but felt it was wrong as amatter of principle to let youngsters read books written foradults.Meanwhile, Peter had thought of a suitable time when noone would be interested in either him or the book. Atseven-thirty in the evening, when the entire family waslistening to the radio in the private office, he took histreasure and stole off to the loft again. He should have beenback by eight-thirty, but he was so engrossed in the bookthat he forgot the time and was just coming down the stairswhen his father entered the room. The scene that followed wasnot surprising: after a slap, a whack and a tug-of-war, thebook lay on the table and Peter was in the loft.This is how matters stood when it was time for the familyto eat. Peter stayed upstairs. No one gave him a momentsthought; hed have to go to bed without his dinner. Wecontinued eating, chatting merrily away, when suddenly weheard a piercing whistle. We lay down our forks and stared ateach other, the shock clearly visible on our pale faces.Then we heard Peters voice through the chimney: "I won tcome down!"Mr. van Daan leapt up, his napkin falling to the floor,and shouted, with the blood rushing to his face, "Ive hadenough!"Father, afraid of what might happen, grabbed him by thearm and the two men went to the attic. After much strugglingand kicking, Peter wound up in his room with the door shut,and we went on eating.Mrs. van Daan wanted to save a piece of bread for herdarling son, but Mr. van D. was adamant. "If he doesntapologize this minute, hell have to sleep in the loft."We protested that going without dinner was enoughpunishment. What if Peter were to catch cold? We wouldnt beable to call a doctor.Peter didnt apologize, and returned to the loft.
35. Mr. van Daan decided to leave well enough alone, though hedid note the next morning that Peters bed had been slept in.At seven Peter went to the attic again, but was persuaded tocome downstairs when Father spoke a few friendly words tohim. After three days of sullen looks and stubborn silence,everything was back to normal.Yours, AnneMONDAY, SEPTEMBER 21, 1942Dearest Kitty,Today Ill tell you the general news here in the Annex. Alamp has been mounted above my divan bed so that in thefuture, when I hear the guns going off, Ill be able to pulla cord and switch on the light. I cant use it at the momentbecause were keeping our window open a little, day andnight.The male members of the van Daan contingent have built avery handy wood-stained food safe, with real screens. Up tonow this glorious cupboard has been located in Peters room,but in the interests of fresh air its been moved to theattic. Where it once stood, theres now a shelf. I advisedPeter to put his table underneath the shelf, add a nice rugand hang his own cupboard where the table now stands. Thatmight make his little cubbyhole more comfy, though Icertainly wouldnt like to sleep there.Mrs. van Daan is unbearable. Im continually being scoldedfor my incessant chatter when Im upstairs. I simply let thewords bounce right off me! Madame now has a new trick up hersleeve: trying to get out of washing the pots and pans. Iftheres a bit of food left at the bottom of the pan, sheleaves it to spoil instead of transferring it to a glassdish. Then in the afternoon when Margot is stuck withcleaning all the pots and pans, Madame exclaims, "Oh, poorMargot, you have so much work to do!"Every other week Mr. Kleiman brings me a couple of bookswritten for girls my age. Im enthusiastic about the loop terHeul series. Ive enjoyed all of Cissy van Marxveldts booksvery much. Ive read The Zaniest Summer four times, and the
36. ludicrous situations still make me laugh.Father and I are currently working on our family tree, andhe tells me something about each person as we go along. Ivebegun my schoolwork. Im working hard at French, crammingfive irregular verbs into my head every day. But Iveforgotten much too much of what I learned in school.Peter has taken up his English with great reluctance. Afew schoolbooks have just arrived, and I brought a largesupply of notebooks, pencils, erasers and labels from home.Pim (thats our pet name for Father) wants me to help himwith his Dutch lessons. Im perfectly willing to tutor him inexchange for his assistance with French and other subjects.But he makes the most unbelievable mistakes!I sometimes listen to the Dutch broadcasts from London.Prince Bernhard recently announced that Princess juliana isexpecting a baby in January, which I think is wonderful. Noone here understands why I take such an interest in the RoyalFamily.A few nights ago I was the topic of discussion, and we alldecided I was an ignoramus. As a result, I threw myself intomy schoolwork the next day, since I have little desire tostill be a freshman when Im fourteen or fifteen. The factthat Im hardly allowed to read anything was also discussed.At the moment, Mothers reading Gentlemen, Wives andServants, and of course Im not allowed to read it (thoughMargot is!). First I have to be more intellectuallydeveloped, like my genius of a sister. Then we discussed myignorance of philosophy, psychology and physiology (Iimmediately looked up these big words in the dictionary!).Its true, I dont know anything about these subjects. Butmaybe Ill be smarter next year!Ive come to the shocking conclusion that I have only onelong-sleeved dress and three cardigans to wear in the winter.Fathers given me permission to knit a white wool sweater;the yarn isnt very pretty, but itll be warm, and thatswhat counts. Some of our clothing was left with friends, butunfortunately we wont be able to get to it until after thewar. Provided its still there, of course.
37. Id just finished writing something about Mrs. van Daanwhen she walked into the room. Thump, I slammed the bookshut."Hey, Anne, cant I even take a peek?""No, Mrs. van Daan.""Just the last page then?""No, not even the last page, Mrs. van Daan."Of course, I nearly died, since that particular pagecontained a rather unflattering description of her.Theres something happening every day, but Im too tiredand lazy to write it all down.Yours, AnneFRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 25, 1942Dearest Kitty,Father has a friend, a man in his mid-seventies named Mr.Dreher, whos sick, poor and deaf as a post. At his side,like a useless appendage, is his wife, twenty-seven yearsyounger and equally poor, whose arms and legs are loaded withreal and fake bracelets and rings left over from moreprosperous days. This Mr. Dreher has already been a greatnuisance to Father, and Ive always admired the saintlypatience with which he handled this pathetic old man on thephone. When we were still living at home, Mother used toadvise him to put a gramophone in front of the receiver, onethat would repeat every three minutes, "Yes, Mr. Dreher" and"No, Mr. Dreher," since the old man never understood a wordof Fathers lengthy replies anyway.Today Mr. Dreher phoned the office and asked Mr. Kugler tocome and see him. Mr. Kugler wasnt in the mood and said hewould send Miep, but Miep canceled the appointment. Mrs.Dreher called the office three times, but since Miep wasreportedly out the entire afternoon, she had to imitate Bepsvoice. Downstairs in the office as well as upstairs in the
38. Annex, there was great hilarity. Now each time the phonerings, Bep says Thats Mrs. Dreher!" and Miep has to laugh,so that the people on the other end of the line are greetedwith an impolite giggle. Cant you just picture it? This hasgot to be the greatest office in the whole wide world. Thebosses and the office girls have such fun together!Some evenings I go to the van Daans for a little chat. Weeat "mothball cookies" (molasses cookies that were stored ina closet that was mothproofed) and have a good time. Recentlythe conversation was about Peter. I said that he often patsme on the cheek, which I dont like. They asked me in atypically grown-up way whether I could ever learn to lovePeter like a brother, since he loves me like a sister. "Oh,no!" I said, but what I was thinking was, "Oh, ugh!" Justimagine! I added that Peters a bit stiff, perhaps becausehes shy. Boys who arent used to being around girls are likethat.I must say that the Annex Committee (the mens section) isvery creative. Listen to the scheme theyve come up with toget a message to Mr. Broks, an Opekta Co. salesrepresentative and friend whos surreptitiously hidden someof our things for us! Theyre going to type a letter to astore owner in southern Zealand who is, indirectly, one ofOpekta s customers and ask him to fill out a form and sendit back in the enclosed self-addressed envelope. Father willwrite the address on the envelope himself. Once the letter isreturned from Zealand, the form can be removed and ahandwritten message confirming that Father is alive can beinserted in the envelope. This way Mr. Broks can read theletter without suspecting a ruse. They chose the province ofZealand because its close to Belgium (a letter can easily besmuggled across the border) and because no one is allowed totravel there without a special permit. An ordinary salesmanlike Mr. Broks would never be granted a permit.Yesterday Father put on another act. Groggy with sleep, hestumbled off to bed. His feet were cold, so I lent him my bedsocks. Five minutes later he flung them to the floor. Then hepulled the blankets over his head because the light botheredhim. The lamp was switched off, and he gingerly poked hishead out from under the covers. It was all very amusing. Westarted talking about the fact that Peter says Margot is a
39. "buttinsky." Suddenly Daddys voice was heard from thedepths: "Sits on her butt, you mean.Mouschi, the cat, is becoming nicer to me as time goes by,but Im still somewhat afraid of her.Yours, AnneSUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 27, 1942Dearest Kitty,Mother and I had a so-called "discussion" today, but theannoying part is that I burst into tears. I cant help it.Daddy is always nice to me, and he also understands me muchbetter. At moments like these I cant stand Mother. Itsobvious that Im a stranger to her; she doesnt even knowwhat I think about the most ordinary things.We were talking about maids and the fact that youresupposed to refer to them as "domestic help" these days. Sheclaimed that when the war is over, thats what theyll wantto be called. I didnt quite see it that way. Then she addedthat I talk about later" so often and that I act as if Iwere such a lady, even though Im not, but I dont thinkbuilding sand castles in the air is such a terrible thing todo, as long as you dont take it too seriously. At any rate,Daddy usually comes to my defense. Without him I wouldnt beable to stick it out here.I dont get along with Margot very well either. Eventhough our family never has the same kind of outbursts theyhave upstairs, I find it far from pleasant. Margots andMothers personalities are so alien to me. I understand mygirlfriends better than my own mother. Isnt that a shame?For the umpteenth time, Mrs. van Daan is sulking. Shesvery moody and has been removing more and more of herbelongings and locking them up. Its too bad Mother doesntrepay every van Daan "disappearing act" with a Frank"disappearing act."Some people, like the van Daans, seem to take specialdelight not only in raising their own children but in helping
40. others raise theirs. Margot doesnt need it, since shesnaturally good, kind and clever, perfection itself, but Iseem to have enough mischief for the two of us. More thanonce the air has been filled with the van Daans admonitionsand my saucy replies. Father and Mother always defend mefiercely. Without them I wouldnt be able to jump back intothe fray with my usual composure. They keep telling me Ishould talk less, mind my own business and be more modest,but I seem doomed to failure. If Father werent so patient,Id have long ago given up hope of ever meeting my parentsquite moderate expectations.If I take a small helping of a vegetable I loathe and eatpotatoes instead, the van Daans, especially Mrs. van Daan,cant get over how spoiled I am. "Come on, Anne, eat somemore vegetables," she says."No, thank you, maam," I reply. "The potatoes are morethan enough.""Vegetables are good for you; your mother says so too.Have some more," she insists, until Father intervenes andupholds my right to refuse a dish I dont like.Then Mrs. van D. really flies off the handle: "You shouldhave been at our house, where children were brought up theway they should be. I dont call this a proper upbringing.Anne is terribly spoiled. Id never allow that. If Anne weremy daughter. . ."This is always how her tirades begin and end: "If Annewere my daughter. . ." Thank goodness Im not.But to get back to the subject of raising children,yesterday a silence fell after Mrs. van D. finished herlittle speech. Father then replied, "I think Anne is verywell brought up. At least shes learned not to respond toyour interminable sermons. As far as the vegetables areconcerned, all I have to say is look whos calling the kettleblack."Mrs. van D. was soundly defeated. The pot calling theketde black refers of course to Madame herself, since shecant tolerate beans or any kind of cabbage in the evening
41. because they give her "gas." But I could say the same. What adope, dont you think? In any case, lets hope she stopstalking about me.Its so funny to see how quickly Mrs. van Daan flushes. Idont, and it secredy annoys her no end.Yours, AnneMONDAY, SEPTEMBER 28,1942Dearest Kitty,I had to stop yesterday, though I was nowhere nearfinished. Im dying to tell you about another one of ourclashes, but before I do Id like to say this: I think itsodd that grown-ups quarrel so easily and so often and aboutsuch petty matters. Up to now I always thought bickering wasjust something children did and that they outgrew it. Often,of course, theres sometimes a reason to have a real quarrel,but the verbal exchanges that take place here are just plainbickering. I should be used to the fact that these squabblesare daily occurrences, but Im not and never will be as longas Im the subject of nearly every discussion. (They refer tothese as "discussions" instead of "quarrels," but Germansdont know the difference!) They criticize everything, and Imean everything, about me: my behavior, my personality, mymanners; every inch of me, from head to toe and back again,is the subject of gossip and debate. Harsh words and shoutsare constantly being flung at my head, though Im absolutelynot used to it. According to the powers that be, Im supposedto grin and bear it. But I cant! I have no intention oftaking their insults lying down. Ill show them that AnneFrank wasnt born yesterday. Theyll sit up and take noticeand keep their big mouths shut when I make them see theyought to attend to their own manners instead of mine. Howdare they act that way! Its simply barbaric. Ive beenastonished, time and again, at such rudeness and most of all.. . at such stupidity (Mrs. van Daan). But as soon as Ivegotten used to the idea, and that shouldnt take long, Illgive them a taste of their own medicine, and then theyllchange their tune! Am I really as bad-mannered, headstrong,stubborn, pushy, stupid, lazy, etc., etc., as the van Daanssay I am? No, of course not. I know I have my faults and
42. shortcomings, but they blow them all out of proportion! Ifyou only knew, Kitty, how I seethe when they scold and mockme. It wont take long before I explode with pent-up rage.But enough of that. Ive bored you long enough with myquarrels, and yet I cant resist adding a highly interestingdinner conversation.Somehow we landed on the subject of Pims extremediffidence. His modesty is a well-known fact, which even thestupidest person wouldnt dream of questioning. All of asudden Mrs. van Daan, who feels the need to bring herselfinto every conversation, remarked, "Im very modest andretiring too, much more so than my husband!"Have you ever heard anything so ridiculous? This sentenceclearly illustrates that shes not exactly what youd callmodest!Mr. van Daan, who felt obliged to explain the "much moreso than my husband," answered calmly, "I have no desire to bemodest and retiring. In my experience, you get a lot furtherby being pushy!" And turning to me, he added, "Dont bemodest and retiring, Anne. It will get you nowhere."Mother agreed completely with this viewpoint. But, asusual, Mrs. van Daan had to add her two cents. This time,however, instead of addressing me directly, she turned to myparents and said, "You must have a strange outlook on life tobe able to say that to Anne. Things were different when I wasgrowing up. Though they probably havent changed much sincethen, except in your modern household!"This was a direct hit at Mothers modern child-rearingmethods, which shes defended on many occasions. Mrs. vanDaan was so upset her face turned bright red. People whoflush easily become even more agitated when they feelthemselves getting hot under the collar, and they quicklylose to their opponents.The nonflushed mother, who now wanted to have the matterover and done with as quickly as possible, paused for amoment to think before she replied. "Well, Mrs. van Daan, Iagree that its much better if a person isnt overmodest. My
43. husband, Margot and Peter are all exceptionally modest. Yourhusband, Anne and I, though not exactly the opposite, dontlet ourselves be pushed around."Mrs. van Daan: "Oh, but Mrs. Frank, I dont understandwhat you mean! Honestly, Im extremely modest and retiring.How can you say that Im pushy?"Mother: "I didnt say you were pushy, but no one woulddescribe you as having a retiring disposition."Mrs. van D.: "Id like to know in what way Im pushy! If Ididnt look out for myself here, no one else would, and Idsoon starve, but that doesnt mean Im not as modest andretiring as your husband."Mother had no choice but to laugh at this ridiculousself-defense, which irritated Mrs. van Daan. Not exactly aborn debater, she continued her magnificent account in amixture of German and Dutch, until she got so tangled up inher own words that she finally rose from her chair and wasjust about to leave the room when her eye fell on me. Youshould have seen her! As luck would have it, the moment Mrs.van D. turned around I was shaking my head in a combinationof compassion and irony. I wasnt doing it on purpose, butId followed her tirade so intently that my reaction wascompletely involuntary. Mrs. van D. wheeled around and gaveme a tongue-lashing: hard, Germanic, mean and vulgar, exactlylike some fat, red-faced fishwife. It was a joy to behold. IfI could draw, Id like to have sketched her as she was then.She struck me as so comical, that silly little scatterbrain!Ive learned one thing: you only really get to know a personafter a fight. Only then can you judge their true character!Yours, AnneTUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 1942Dearest Kitty,The strangest things happen to you when youre in hiding!Try to picture this. Because we dont have a bathtub, we washourselves in a washtub, and because theres only hot water inthe office (by which I mean the entire lower floor), the
44. seven of us take turns making the most of this greatopportunity. But since none of us are alike and are allplagued by varying degrees of modesty, each member of thefamily has selected a different place to wash. Peter takes abath in the office kitchen, even though it has a glass door.When its time for his bath, he goes around to each of us inturn and announces that we shouldnt walk past the kitchenfor the next half hour. He considers this measure to besufficient. Mr. van D. takes his bath upstairs, figuring thatthe safety of his own room outweighs the difficulty of havingto carry the hot water up all those stairs. Mrs. van D. hasyet to take a bath; shes waiting to see which is the bestplace. Father bathes in the private office and Mother in thekitchen behind a fire screen, while Margot and I havedeclared the front office to be our bathing grounds. Sincethe curtains are drawn on Saturday afternoon, we scrubourselves in the dark, while the one who isnt in the bathlooks out the window through a chink in the curtains andgazes in wonder at the endlessly amusing people.A week ago I decided I didnt like this spot and have beenon the lookout for more comfortable bathing quarters. It wasPeter who gave me the idea of setting my washtub in thespacious office bathroom. I can sit down, turn on the light,lock the door, pour out the water without anyones help, andall without the fear of being seen. I used my lovely bathroomfor the first time on Sunday and, strange as it may seem, Ilike it better than any other place.The plumber was at work downstairs on Wednesday, movingthe water pipes and drains from the office bathroom to thehallway so the pipes wont freeze during a cold winter. Theplumbers visit was far from pleasant. Not only were we notallowed to run water during the day, but the bathroom wasalso off-limits. Ill tell you how we handled this problem;you may find it unseemly of me to bring it up, but Im not soprudish about matters of this kind. On the day of ourarrival, Father and I improvised a chamber pot, sacrificing acanning jar for this purpose. For the duration of theplumbers visit, canning jars were put into service duringthe daytime to hold our calls of nature. As far as I wasconcerned, this wasnt half as difficult as having to sitstill all day and not say a word. You can imagine how hardthat was for Miss Quack, Quack, Quack. On ordinary days we
45. have to speak in a whisper; not being able to talk or move atall is ten times worse.After three days of constant sitting, my backside wasstiff and sore. Nightly calisthenics helped.Yours, AnneTHURSDAY, OCTOBER 1, 1942Dear Kitty,Yesterday I had a horrible fright. At eight oclock thedoorbell suddenly rang. All I could think of was that someonewas coming to get us, you know who I mean. But I calmed downwhen everybody swore it must have been either pranksters orthe mailman.The days here are very quiet. Mr. Levinsohn, a littleJewish pharmacist and chemist, is working for Mr. Kugler inthe kitchen. Since hes familiar with the entire building,were in constant dread that hell take it into his head togo have a look at what used to be the laboratory. Were asstill as baby mice. Who would have guessed three months agothat quicksilver Anne would have to sit so quietly for hourson end, and whats more, that she could?Mrs. van Daans birthday was the twenty-ninth. Though wedidnt have a large celebration, she was showered withflowers, simple gifts and good food. Apparently the redcarnations from her spouse are a family tradition.Let me pause a moment on the subject of Mrs. van Daan andtell you that her attempts to flirt with Father are aconstant source of irritation to me. She pats him on thecheek and head, hikes up her skirt and makes so-called wittyremarks in an effort to gets Pims attention. Fortunately,he finds her neither pretty nor charming, so he doesntrespond to her flirtations. As you know, Im quite thejealous type, and I cant abide her behavior. After all,Mother doesnt act that way toward Mr. van D., which is whatI told Mrs. van D. right to her face.From time to time Peter can be very amusing. He and I have
46. one thing in common: we like to dress up, which makeseveryone laugh. One evening we made our appearance, withPeter in one of his mothers skin-tight dresses and me in hissuit. He wore a hat; I had a cap on. The grown-ups splittheir sides laughing, and we enjoyed ourselves every bit asmuch.Bep bought new skirts for Margot and me at The Bijenkorf.The fabric is hideous, like the burlap bag potatoes come in.Just the kind of thing the department stores wouldnt daresell in the olden days, now costing 24.00 guilders (Margots)and 7.75 guilders (mine).We have a nice treat in store: Beps ordered acorrespondence course in shorthand for Margot, Peter and me.Just you wait, by this time next year well be able to takeperfect shorthand. In any case, learning to write a secretcode like that is really interesting.I have a terrible pain in my index finger (on my lefthand), so I cant do any ironing. What luck!Mr. van Daan wants me to sit next to him at the table,since Margot doesnt eat enough to suit him. Fine with me, Ilike changes. Theres always a tiny black cat roaming aroundthe yard, and it reminds me of my dear sweet Moortje. Anotherreason I welcome the change is that Mamas always carping atme, especially at the table. Now Margot will have to bear thebrunt of it. Or rather, wont, since Mother doesnt make suchsarcastic remarks to her. Not to that paragon of virtue! Imalways teasing Margot about being a paragon of virtue thesedays, and she hates it. Maybe itll teach her not to be sucha goody-goody. High time she learned.To end this hodgepodge of news, a particularly amusingjoke told by Mr. van Daan: What goes click ninety-nine timesand clack once?A centipede with a clubfoot.Bye-bye, AnneSATURDAY, OCTOBER 3, 1942
47. Dear Kitty,Everybody teased me quite a bit yesterday because I laydown on the bed next to Mr. van Daan. "At your age! Shocking!" and other remarks along those lines. Silly, of course. Idnever want to sleep with Mr. van Daan the way they mean.Yesterday Mother and I had another run-in and she reallykicked up a fuss. She told Daddy all my sins and I started tocry, which made me cry too, and I already had such an awfulheadache. I finally told Daddy that I love "him" more than Ido Mother, to which he replied that it was just a passingphase, but I dont think so. I simply cant stand Mother, andI have to force myself not to snap at her all the time, andto stay calm, when Id rather slap her across the face. Idont know why Ive taken such a terrible dislike to her.Daddy says that if Mother isnt feeling well or has aheadache, I should volunteer to help her, but Im not goingto because I dont love her and dont enjoy doing it. I canimagine Mother dying someday, but Daddys death seemsinconceivable. Its very mean of me, but thats how I feel. Ihope Mother will never read this or anything else Ivewritten.Ive been allowed to read more grown-up books lately.Evas Youth by Nico van Suchtelen is currently keeping mebusy. I dont think theres much of a difference between thisand books for teenage girls. Eva thought that children grewon trees, like apples, and that the stork plucked them offthe tree when they were ripe and brought them to the mothers.But her girlfriends cat had kittens and Eva saw them comingout of the cat, so she thought cats laid eggs and hatchedthem like chickens, and that mothers who wanted a child alsowent upstairs a few days before their time to lay an egg andbrood on it. After the babies arrived, the mothers werepretty weak from all that squatting. At some point, Evawanted a baby too. She took a wool scarf and spread it on theground so the egg could fall into it, and then she squatteddown and began to push. She clucked as she waited, but no eggcame out. Finally, after shed been sitting for a long time,something did come, but it was a sausage instead of an egg.Eva was embarrassed. She thought she was sick. Funny, isntit? There are also parts of Evas Youth that talk about womenselling their bodies on the street and asking loads of money.
48. Id be mortified in front of a man like that. In addition, itmentions Evas menstruation. Oh, I long to get my period --then Ill really be grown up. Daddy is grumbling again andthreatening to take away my diary. Oh, horror of horrors!From now on, Im going to hide it.Anne FrankWEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 7, 1942I imagine that. . .Ive gone to Switzerland. Daddy and I sleep in one room,while the boys. study is turned into a sitting room, where Ican receive visitors. As a surprise, theyve bought newfurniture for me, including a tea table, a desk, armchairsand a divan. Everythings simply wonderful. After a few daysDaddy gives me 150 guilders -- converted into Swiss money, ofcourse, but Ill call them guilders -- and tells me to buyeverything I think Ill need, all for myself. (Later on, Iget a guilder a week, which I can also use to buy whatever Iwant.) I set off with Bernd and buy:3 cotton undershirts @ 0.50 = 1.503 cotton underpants @ 0.50 = 1.503 wool undershirts @ O. 75 = 2.253 wool underpants @ O. 75 = 2.252 petticoats @ 0.50 = 1.002 bras (smallest size) @ 0.50 = 1.005 pajamas @ 1.00 = 5.001 summer robe @ 2.50 = 2.501 winter robe @ 3.00 = 3.002 bed jackets @ O. 75 = 1.50. Annes cousins Bernhard (Bernd) and Stephan Elias.THE DIARY OF A YOUNG GIRL 531 small pillow @ 1.00 = 1.001 pair of lightweight slippers @ 1.00 = 1.001 pair of warm slippers @ 1.50 = 1.501 pair of summer shoes (school) @ 1.50 = 1.501 pair of summer shoes (dressy) @ 2.00 = 2.001 pair of winter shoes (school) @ 2.50 = 2.501 pair of winter shoes (dressy) @ 3.00 = 3.002 aprons @ 0.50 = 1.0025 handkerchiefs @ 0.05 = 1.00
49. 4 pairs of silk stockings @ 0.75 = 3.004 pairs of kneesocks @ 0.50 = 2.004 pairs of socks @ 0.25 = 1.002 pairs of thick stockings @ 1.00 = 2.003 skeins of white yarn (underwear, cap) = 1.503 skeins of blue yarn (sweater, skirt) = 1.503 skeins of variegated yarn (cap, scarf) = 1.50Scarves, belts, collars, buttons = 1.25Plus 2 school dresses (summer), 2 school dresses (winter),2 good dresses (sumr.ner), 2 good dresses (winter), 1 summerskirt, 1 good winter skirt, 1 school winter skirt, 1raincoat, 1 summer coat, 1 winter coat, 2 hats, 2 caps. For atotal of 10g.00 guilders.2 purses, 1 ice-skating outfit, 1 pair of skates, 1 case(containing powder, skin cream, foundation cream, cleansingcream, suntan lotion, cotton, first-aid kit, rouge, lipstick,eyebrow pencil, bath salts, bath powder, eau de cologne,soap, powder puff).Plus 4 sweaters @ 1.50,4 blouses @ 1.00, miscellaneousitems @ 10.00 and books, presents @ 4.50.OCTOBER 9, 1942Dearest Kitty,Today I have nothing but dismal and depressing news toreport. Our many Jewish friends and acquaintances are beingtaken away in droves. The Gestapo is treating them veryroughly and transporting them in cattle cars to Westerbork,the big camp in Drenthe to which theyre sending all theJews. Miep told us about someone whod managed to escape fromthere. It must be terrible in Westerbork. The people getalmost nothing to eat, much less to drink, as water isavailable only one hour a day, and theres only one toiletand sink for several thousand people. Men and women sleep inthe same room, and women and children often have their headsshaved. Escape is almost impossible; many people look Jewish,and theyre branded by their shorn heads.If its that bad in Holland, what must it be like in thosefaraway and uncivilized places where the Germans are sending
50. them? We assume that most of them are being murdered. TheEnglish radio says theyre being gassed. Perhaps thats thequickest way to die.I feel terrible. Mieps accounts of these horrors are soheartrending, and Miep is also very distraught. The otherday, for instance, the Gestapo deposited an elderly, crippledJewish woman on Mieps doorstep while they set off to find acar. The old woman was terrified of the glaring searchlightsand the guns firing at the English planes overhead. Yet Miepdidnt dare let her in. Nobody would. The Germans aregenerous enough when it comes to punishment.Bep is also very subdued. Her boyfriend is being sent toGermany. Every time the planes fly over, shes afraid theyregoing to drop their entire bomb load on Bertuss head. Jokeslike "Oh, dont worry, they cant all fall on him" or "Onebomb is all it takes" are hardly appropriate in thissituation. Bertus is not the only one being forced to work inGermany. Trainloads of young men depart daily. Some of themtry to sneak off the train when it stops at a small station,but only a few manage to escape unnoticed and find a place tohide.But thats not the end of my lamentations. Have you everheard the term "hostages"? Thats the latest punishment forsaboteurs. Its the most horrible thing you can imagine.Leading citizens -- innocent people -- are taken prisoner toawait their execution. If the Gestapo cant find thesaboteur, they simply grab five hostages and line them upagainst the wall. You read the announcements of their deathin the paper, where theyre referred to as "fatalaccidents.Fine specimens of humanity, those Germans, and to thinkIm actually one of them! No, thats not true, Hitler tookaway our nationality long ago. And besides, there are nogreater enemies on earth than the Germans and the Jews.Yours, AnneWEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 14, 1942Dear Kitty,
51. Im terribly busy. Yesterday I began by translating achapter from La Belle Nivemaise and writing down vocabularywords. Then I worked on an awful math problem and translatedthree pages of French grammar besides. Today, French grammarand history. I simply refuse to do that wretched math everyday. Daddy thinks its awful too.Im almost better at it than he is, though in fact neitherof us is any good, so we always have to call on Margotshelp. Im also working away at my shorthand, which I enjoy.Of the three of us, Ive made the most progress.Ive read The Storm Family. Its quite good, but doesntcompare to Joop ter Heul. Anyway, the same words can be foundin both books, which makes sense because theyre written bythe same author. Cissy van Marxveldt is a terrific writer.Im definitely going to let my own children read her bookstoo.Moreover, Ive read a lot of Korner plays. I like the wayhe writes. For example, Hedwig, The Cousin from Bremen, TheGoverness, The Green Domino, etc.Mother, Margot and I are once again the best of buddies.Its actually a lot nicer that way. Last night Margot and Iwere lying side by side in my bed. It was incredibly cramped,but thats what made it fun. She asked if she could read mydiary once in a while."Parts of it," I said, and asked about hers. She gave mepermission to read her diary as well.The conversation turned to the future, and I asked whatshe wanted to be when she was older. But she wouldnt say andwas quite mysterious about it. I gathered it had something todo with teaching; of course, Im not absolutely sure, but Isuspect its something along those lines. I really shouldntbe so nosy.This morning Ilay on Peters bed, after first havingchased him off it. He was furious, but I didnt care. Hemight consider being a little more friendly to me from timeto time. After all, I did give him an apple last night.
52. I once asked Margot if she thought I was ugly. She saidthat I was cute and had nice eyes. A little vague, dont youthink?Well, until next time!Anne FrankPS. This morning we all took turns on the scale. Margotnow weighs 132 pounds, Mother 136, Father 155, Anne 96, Peter14g, Mrs. van Daan 117, Mr. van Daan 165. In the three monthssince Ive been here, Ive gained 19 pounds. A lot, huh?TUESDAY, OCTOBER 20, 1942Dearest Kitty,My hands still shaking, though its been two hours sincewe had the scare. I should explain that there are five fireextinguishers in the building. The office staff stupidlyforgot to warn us that the carpenter, or whatever hescalled, was coming to fill the extinguishers. As a result, wedidnt bother to be quiet until I heard the sound ofhammering on the landing (across from the bookcase). Iimmediately assumed it was the carpenter and went to warnBep, who was eating lunch, that she couldnt go backdownstairs. Father and I stationed ourselves at the door sowe could hear when the man had left. After working for aboutfifteen minutes, he laid his hammer and some other tools onour bookcase (or so we thought!) and banged on our door. Weturned white with fear. Had he heard something after all andnow wanted to check out this mysterious-looking bookcase? Itseemed so, since he kept knocking, pulling, pushing andjerking on it.I was so scared I nearly fainted at the thought of thistotal stranger managing to discover our wonderful hidingplace. Just when I thought my days were numbered, we heardMr. Kleimans voice saying, "Open up, its me." We opened thedoor at once. What had happened?The hook fastening the bookcase had gotten stuck, which iswhy no one had been able to warn us about the carpenter.
53. After the man had left, Mr. Kleiman came to get Bep, butcouldnt open the bookcase. I cant tell you how relieved Iwas. In my imagination, the man I thought was trying to getinside the Secret Annex had kept growing and growing untilhed become not only a giant but also the cruelest Fascist inthe world. Whew. Fortunately, everything worked out allright, at least this time.We had lots of fun on Monday. Miep and Jan spent the nightwith us. Margot and I slept in Father and Mothers room forthe night so the Gieses could have our beds. The menu wasdrawn up in their honor, and the meal was delicious. Thefestivities were briefly interrupted when Fathers lampcaused a short circuit and we were suddenly plunged intodarkness. What were we to do? We did have fuses, but the fusebox was at the rear of the dark warehouse, which made this aparticularly unpleasant job at night. Still, the men venturedforth, and ten minutes later we were able to put away thecandles.I was up early this morning. Jan was already dressed.Since he had to leave at eight-thirty, he was upstairs eatingbreakfast by eight. Miep was busy getting dressed, and Ifound her in her undershirt when I came in. She wears thesame kind of long underwear I do when she bicycles. Margotand I threw on our clothes as well and were upstairs earlierthan usual. After a pleasant breakfast, Miep headeddownstairs. It was pouring outside and she was glad shedidnt have to bicycle to work. Daddy and I made the beds,and afterward I learned five irregular French verbs. Quiteindustrious, dont you think?Margot and Peter were reading in our room, with Mouschicurled up beside Margot on the divan. After my irregularFrench verbs, I joined them and read The Woods Are SingingforAll Eternity. Its quite a beautiful book, but very unusual.Im almost finished.Next week its Beps turn to spend the night.Yours, AnneTHURSDAY, OCTOBER 29, 1942
54. My dearest Kitty,Im very worried. Fathers sick. Hes covered with spotsand has a high temperature. It looks like measles. Justthink, we cant even call a doctor! Mother is making himperspire in hopes of sweating out the fever.This morning Miep told us that the furniture has beenremoved from the van Daans apartment on Zuider-Amstellaan.We havent told Mrs. van D. yet. Shes been so"nervenmassig"* [*nervous] lately, and we dont feel likehearing her moan and groan again about all the beautifulchina and lovely chairs she had to leave behind. We had toabandon most of our nice things too. Whats the good ofgrumbling about it now?Father wants me to start reading books by Hebbel and otherwell-known German writers. I can read German fairly well bynow, except that I usually mumble the words instead ofreading them silently to myself. But thatll pass. Father hastaken the plays of Goethe and Schiller down from the bigbookcase and is planning to read to me every evening. Wevestarted off with Don Carlos. Encouraged by Fathers goodexample, Mother pressed her prayer book into my hands. I reada few prayers in German, just to be polite. They certainlysound beautiful, but they mean very little to me. Why is shemaking me act so religious and devout?Tomorrow were going to light the stove for the firsttime. The chimney hasnt been swept in ages, so the room isbound to fill with smoke. Lets hope the thing draws!Yours, AnneMONDAY, NOVEMBER 2, 1942Dear Kitty,Bep stayed with us Friday evening. It was fun, but shedidnt sleep very well because shed drunk some wine. For therest, theres nothing special to report. I had an awfulheadache yesterday and went to bed early. Margots beingexasperating again.
55. This morning I began sorting out an index card file fromthe office, because itd fallen over and gotten all mixed up.Before long I was going nuts. I asked Margot and Peter tohelp, but they were too lazy, so I put it away.Im not crazy enough to do it all by myself!Anne FrankPS. I forgot to mention the important news that Improbably going to get my period soon. I can tell because Ikeep finding a whitish smear in my panties, and Motherpredicted it would start soon. I can hardly wait. Its such amomentous event. Too bad I cant use sanitary napkins, butyou cant get them anymore, and Mamas tampons can be usedonly by women whove had a baby. iCOMMENT ADDED BY ANNE ON JANUARY 22, 1944: I wouldnt beable to write that kind of thing anymore.Now that Im rereading my diary after a year and a half,Im surprised at my childish innocence. Deep down I know Icould never be that innocent again, however much Id like tobe. I can understand the mood chanaes and the comments aboutMargot, Mother and Father as if Id written them onlyyesterday, but I cant imagine writina so openly about othermatters. It embarrasses me areatly to read the panes dealinawith subjects that I remembered as beina nicer than theyactually were. My descriptions are so indelicate. But enouahof that.I can also understand my homesickness and yearning forMoortje. The whole time Ive been here Ive longedunconsciously and at times consciously for trust, love andphysical affection. This longing may change in intensity, butits always there.THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 5, 1942Dear Kitty,The British have finally scored a few successes in Africaand Stalingrad hasnt fallen yet, so the men are happy and wehad coffee and tea this morning. For the rest, nothing
56. special to report.This week Ive been reading a lot and doing little work.Thats the way things ought to be. Thats surely the road tosuccess.Mother and I are getting along better lately, but werenever close. Fathers not very open about his feelings, buthes the same sweetheart hes always been. We lit the stove afew days ago and the entire room is still filled with smoke.I prefer central heating, and Im probably not the only one.Margots a stinker (theres no other word for it), a constantsource of irritation, morning, noon and night.Anne FrankSATURDAY, NOVEMBER 7, 1942Dearest Kitty,Mothers nerves are very much on edge, and that doesntbode well for me. Is it just a coincidence that Father andMother never scold Margot and always blame me for everything?Last night, for example, Margot was reading a book withbeautiful illustrations; she got up and put the book asidefor later. I wasnt doing anything, so I picked it up andbegan looking at the pictures. Margot carne back, saw "her"book in my hands, knitted her brow and angrily demanded thebook back. I wanted to look through it some more. Margot gotmadder by the minute, and Mother butted in: "Margot wasreading that book; give it back to her."Father came in, and without even knowing what was goingon, saw that Margot was being wronged and lashed out at me:"Id like to see what youd do if Margot was looking at oneof your books!"I promptly gave in, put the book down and, according tothem, left the room in a huff." I was neither huffy norcross, but merely sad.It wasnt right of Father to pass judgment without knowingwhat the issue was. I would have given the book to Margotmyself, and a lot sooner, if Father and Mother hadnt
57. intervened and rushed to take Margots part, as if she weresuffering some great injustice.Of course, Mother took Margots side; they always takeeach others sides. Im so used to it that Ive becomecompletely indifferent to Mothers rebukes and Margotsmoodiness. I love them, but only because theyre Mother andMargot. I dont give a darn about them as people. As far asIm concerned, they can go jump in a lake. Its differentwith Father. When I see him being partial to Margot,approving Margots every action, praising her, hugging her, Ifeel a gnawing ache inside, because Im crazy about him. Imodel myself after Father, and theres no one in the world Ilove more. He doesnt realize that he treats Margotdifferently than he does me: Margot just happens to be thesmartest, the kindest, the prettiest and the best. But I havea right to be taken seriously too. Ive always been the clownand mischief maker of the family; Ive always had to paydouble for my sins: once with scoldings and then again withmy own sense of despair. Im no longer satisfied with themeaningless affection or the supposedly serious talks. I longfor something from Father that hes incapable of giving. Imnot jealous of Margot; I never have been. Im not envious ofher brains or her beauty. Its just that Id like to feelthat Father really loves me, not because Im his child, butbecause Im me, Anne.I cling to Father because my contempt of Mother is growingdaily and its only through him that Im able to retain thelast ounce of family feeling I have left. He doesntunderstand that I sometimes need to vent my feelings forMother. He doesnt want to talk about it, and he avoids anydiscussion involving Mothers failings. And yet Mother, withall her shortcomings, is tougher for me to deal with. I dontknow how I should act. I cant very well confront her withher carelessness, her sarcasm and her hard-heartedness, yet Icant continue to take the blame for everything.Im the opposite of Mother, so of course we clash. I dontmean to judge her; I dont have that right. Im simplylooking at her as a mother. Shes not a mother to me -- Ihave to mother myself. Ive cut myself adrift from them. Imcharting my own course, and well see where it leads me. Ihave no choice, because I can picture what a mother and a
58. wife should be and cant seem to find anything of the sort inthe woman Im supposed to call "Mother."I tell myself time and again to overlook Mothers badexample. I only want to see her good points, and to lookinside myself for whats lacking in her. But it doesnt work,and the worst part is that Father and Mother dont realizetheir own inadequacies and how much I blame them for lettingme down. Are there any parents who can make their childrencompletely happy?Sometimes I think God is trying to test me, both now andin the future. Ill have to become a good person on my own,without anyone to serve as a model or advise me, but itllmake me stronger in the end.Who else but me is ever going to read these letters? Whoelse but me can I turn to for comfort? Im frequently in needof consolation, I often feel weak, and more often than not, Ifail to meet expectations. I know this, and every day Iresolve to do better.They arent consistent in their treatment of me. One daythey say that Annes a sensible girl and entitled to knoweverything, and the next that Annes a silly goose whodoesnt know a thing and yet imagines shes learned all sheneeds to know from books! Im no longer the baby and spoiledlittle darling whose every deed can be laughed at. I have myown ideas, plans and ideals, but am unable to articulate themyet.Oh well. So much comes into my head at night when Imalone, or during the day when Im obliged to put up withpeople I cant abide or who invariably misinterpret myintentions. Thats why I always wind up coming back to mydiary -- I start there and end there because Kittys alwayspatient. I promise her that, despite everything, Ill keepgoing, that Ill find my own way and choke back my tears. Ionly wish I could see some results or, just once, receiveencouragement from someone who loves me.Dont condemn me, but think of me as a person whosometimes reaches the bursting point!
59. Yours, AnneMONDAY, NOVEMBER 9,1942Dearest Kitty,Yesterday was Peters birthday, his sixteenth. I wasupstairs by eight, and Peter and I looked at his presents. Hereceived a game of Monopoly, a razor and a cigarette lighter.Not that he smokes so much, not at all; it just looks sodistinguished.The biggest surprise came from Mr. van Daan, who reportedat one that the English had landed in Tunis, Algiers,Casablanca and Oran."This is the beginning of the end," everyone was saying,but Churchill, the British Prime Minister, who must haveheard the same thing being repeated in England, declared,"This is not the end. It is not even the beginning of theend. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning." Do yousee the difference? However, theres reason for optimism.Stalingrad, the Russian city that has been under attack forthree months, still hasnt fallen intoGerman hands.In the true spirit of the Annex, I should talk to youabout food. (I should explain that theyre real gluttons upon the top floor.)Bread is delivered daily by a very nice baker, a friend ofMr. Kleimans. Of course, we dont have as much as we did athome, but its enough. We also purchase ration books on theblack market. The price keeps going up; its already risenfrom 27 to 33 guilders. And that for mere sheets of printedpaper!To provide ourselves with a source of nutrition that willkeep, aside from the hundred cans of food weve stored here,we bought three hundred pounds of beans. Not just for us, butfor the office staff as well. Wed hung the sacks of beans onhooks in the hallway, just inside our secret entrance, but afew seams split under the weight. So we decided to move themto the attic, and Peter was entrusted with the heavy lifting.
60. He managed to get five of the six sacks upstairs intact andwas busy with the last one when the sack broke and a flood,or rather a hailstorm, of brown beans went flying through theair and down the stairs. Since there were about fifty poundsof beans in that sack, it made enough noise to raise thedead. Downstairs they were sure the house was falling downaround their heads. Peter was stunned, but then burst intopeals of laughter when he saw me standing at the bottom ofthe stairs, like an island in a sea of brown, with waves ofbeans lapping at my ankles. We promptly began picking themup, but beans are so small and slippery that they roll intoevery conceivable corner and hole. Now each time we goupstairs, we bend over and hunt around so we can present Mrs.van Daan with a handful of beans.I almost forgot to mention that Father has recovered fromhis illness.Yours, AnneP.S. The radio has just announced that Algiers has fallen.Morocco, Casablanca and Oran have been in English hands forseveral days. Were now waiting for Tunis.TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 10, 1942Dearest Kitty,Great news! Were planning to take an eighth person intohiding with us!Yes, really. We always thought there was enough room andfood for one more person, but we were afraid of placing aneven greater burden on Mr. Kugler and Mr. Kleiman. But sincereports of the dreadful things being done to the Jews aregetting worse by the day, Father decided to sound out thesetwo gentlemen, and they thought it was an excellent plan."Its just as dangerous, whether there are seven or eight,"they noted rightly. Once this was settled, we sat down andmentally went through our circle of acquaintances, trying tocome up with a single person who would blend in well with ourextended family. This wasnt difficult. After Father hadrejected all the van Daan relatives, we chose a dentist namedAlfred Dussel. He lives with a charming Christian lady whos
61. quite a bit younger than he is. Theyre probably not married,but thats beside the point. Hes known to be quiet andrefined, and he seemed, from our superficial acquaintancewith him, to be nice. Miep knows him as well, so shell beable to make the necessary arrangements. If he comes, Mr.Dussel will have to sleep in my room instead of Margot, whowill have to make do with the folding bed.* [*After Dusselarrived, Margot slept in her parents bedroom.] Well ask himto bring along something to fill cavities with.Yours, AnneTHURSDAY, NOVEMBER 12, 1942Dearest Kitty,Miep came to tell us that shed been to see Dr. Dussel. Heasked her the moment she entered the room if she knew of ahiding place and was enormously pleased when Miep said shehad something in mind. She added "that hed need to go intohiding as soon as possible, preferably Saturday, but hethought this was highly improbable, since he wanted to bringhis records up to date, settle his accounts and attend to acouple of patients. Miep relayed the message to us thismorning. We didnt think it was wise to wait so long. Allthese preparations require explanations to various people whowe feel ought to be kept in the dark. Miep went to ask if Dr.Dussel couldnt manage to come on Saturday after all, but hesaid no, and now hes scheduled to arrive on Monday.I think its odd that he doesnt jump at our proposal. Ifthey pick him up on the street, it wont help either hisrecords or his patients, so why the delay? If you ask me,its stupid of Father to humor him.Otherwise, no news.Yours, AnneTUESDAY, NOVEMBER 17, 1942Dearest Kitty!Mr. Dussel has arrived. Everything went smoothly. Miep
62. told him to be at a certain place in front of the post officeat 11 A.M., when a man would meet him, and he was at theappointed place at the appointed time. Mr. Kleiman went up tohim, announced that the man he was expecting to meet wasunable to come and asked him to drop by the office to seeMiep. Mr. Kleiman took a streetcar back to the office whileMr. Dussel followed on foot.It was eleven-twenty when Mr. Dussel tapped on the officedoor. Miep asked him to remove his coat, so the yellow starcouldnt be seen, and brought him to the private office,where Mr. Kleiman kept him occupied until the cleaning ladyhad gone. On the pretext that the private office was neededfor something else, Miep took Mr. Dussel upstairs, opened thebookcase and stepped inside, while Mr. Dussellooked on inamazement.In the meantime, the seven of us had seated ourselvesaround the dining table to await the latest addition to ourfamily with coffee and cognac. Miep first led him into theFrank familys room. He immediately recognized our furniture,but had no idea we were upstairs, just above his head. WhenMiep told him, he was so astonished he nearly fainted. Thankgoodness she didnt leave him in suspense any longer, butbrought him upstairs. Mr. Dussel sank into a chair and staredat us in dumbstruck silence, as though he thought he couldread the truth on our faces. Then he stuttered, "Aber . . .but are you nicht in Belgium? The officer, the auto, theywere not coming? Your escape was not working?"We explained the whole thing to him, about how weddeliberately spread the rumor of the officer and the car tothrow the Germans and anyone else who might come looking forus off the track. Mr. Dussel was speechless in the face ofsuch ingenuity, and could do nothing but gaze around insurprise as he explored the rest of our lovely andultrapractical Annex. We all had lunch together. Then he tooka short nap, joined us for tea, put away the few belongingsMiep had been able to bring here in advance and began to feelmuch more at home. Especially when we handed him thefollowing typewritten rules and regulations for the SecretAnnex (a van Daan production):PROSPECTUS AND GUIDE TO THE SECRET ANNEX
63. A Unique Facility for the TemporaryAccommodation of Jews and OtherDispossessed PersonsOpen all year round: Located in beautiful, quiet, woodedsurroundings in the heart of Amsterdam. No private residencesin the vicinity. Can be reached by streetcar 13 or 17 andalso by car and bicycle. For those to whom suchtransportation has been forbidden by the German authorities,it can also be reached on foot. Furnished and unfurnishedrooms and apartments are available at all times, with orwithout meals.Price: Free.Diet: Low-fat.Runnina water in the bathroom (sorry, no bath) and onvarious inside and outside walls. Cozy wood stoves forheating.Ample storage space for a variety of goods. Two large,modern safes.Private radio with a direct line to London, New York, TelAviv and many other stations. Available to all residentsafter 6 P.M. No listening to forbidden broadcasts, withcertain exceptions, i.e., German stations may only be tunedin to listen to classical music. It is absolutely forbiddento listen to German news bulletins (regardless of where theyare transmitted from) and to pass them on to others.Rest hours: From 10 P.M. to 7:30 A.M.; 10:15 A.M. onSundays. Owing to circumstances, residents are required toobserve rest hours during the daytime when instructed to doso by the Management. To ensure the safety of all, rest hoursmust be strictly observed!!!Free-time activities: None allowed outside the house untilfurther notice.Use of language: It is necessary to speak softly at alltimes. Only the language of civilized people may be spoken,
64. thus no German.Reading and relaxation: No German books may be read,except for the classics and works of a scholarly nature.Other books are optional.Calisthenics: Daily.Singing: Only softly, and after 6 P.M.Movies: Prior arrangements required.Classes: A weekly correspondence course in shorthand.Courses in English, French, math and history offered at anyhour of the day or night. Payment in the form of tutoring,e.g., Dutch.Separate department for the care of small household pets(with the exception of vermin, for which special permits arerequired).Mealtimes:Breakfast: At 9 A.M. daily except holidays and Sundays; atapproximately 11:30 A.M. on Sundays and holidays.Lunch: A light meal. From 1:15 P.M. to 1:45 P.M.Dinner: Mayor not be a hot meal.Mealtime depends on news broadcasts.Obligations with respect to the Supply Corps: Residentsmust be prepared to help with office work at all times.Baths: The washtub is available to all residents after 9 A.M.on Sundays. Residents may bathe in the bathroom, kitchen,private office or front office, as they choose.Alcohol: For medicinal purposes only.The end.Yours, Anne
65. THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 19, 1942Dearest Kitty,Just as we thought, Mr. Dussel is a very nice man. Ofcourse he didnt mind sharing a room with me; to be honest,Im not exactly delighted at having a stranger use my things,but you have to make sacrifices for a good cause, and Imglad I can make this small one. "If we can save even one ofour friends, the rest doesnt matter," said Father, and hesabsolutely right.The first day Mr. Dussel was here, he asked me all sortsof questions -- for example, what time the cleaning ladycomes to the office, how weve arranged to use the washroomand when were allowed to go to the toilet. You may laugh,but these things arent so easy in a hiding place. During thedaytime we cant make any noise that might be hearddownstairs, and when someone else is there, like the cleaninglady, we have to be extra careful. I patiently explained allthis to Mr. Dussel, but I was surprised to see how slow he isto catch on. He asks everything twice and still cantremember what youve told him.Maybe hes just confused by the sudden change and hellget over it. Otherwise, everything is going fine.Mr. Dussel has told us much about the outside world wevemissed for so long. He had sad news. Countless friends andacquaintances have been taken off to a dreadful fate. Nightafter night, green and gray military vehicles cruise thestreets. They knock on every door, asking whether any Jewslive there. If so, the whole family is immediately takenaway. If not, they proceed to the next house. Its impossibleto escape their clutches unless you go into hiding. Theyoften go around with lists, knocking only on those doorswhere they know theres a big haul to be made. Theyfrequently offer a bounty, so much per head. Its like theslave hunts of the olden days. I dont mean to make lightofthisj its much too tragic for that. In the evenings whenits dark, I often see long lines of good, innocent people,accompanied by crying children, walking on and on, orderedabout by a handful of men who bully and beat them until theynearly drop. No one is spared. The sick, the elderly,
66. children, babies and pregnant women -- all are marched totheir death.Were so fortunate here, away from the turmoil. Wewouldnt have to give a moments thought to all thissuffering if it werent for the fact that were so worriedabout those we hold dear, whom we can no longer help. I feelwicked sleeping in a warm bed, while somewhere out there mydearest friends are dropping from exhaustion or being knockedto the ground.I get frightened myself when I think of close friends whoare now at the mercy of the cruelest monsters ever to stalkthe earth.And all because theyre Jews.Yours, AnneFRIDAY, NOVEMBER 20, 1942Dearest Kitty,We dont really know how to react. Up to now very littlenews about the Jews had reached us here, and we thought itbest to stay as cheerful as possible. Every now and then Miepused to mention what had happened to a friend, and Mother orMrs. van Daan would start to cry, so she decided it wasbetter not to say any more. But we bombarded Mr. Dussel withquestions, and the stories he had to tell were so gruesomeand dreadful that we cant get them out of our heads. Onceweve had time to digest the news, well probably go back toour usual joking and teasing. It wont do us or those outsideany good if we continue to be as gloomy as we are now. Andwhat would be the point of turning the Secret Annex into aMelancholy Annex?No matter what Im doing, I cant help thinking aboutthose who are gone. I catch myself laughing and remember thatits a disgrace to be so cheerful. But am I supposed to spendthe whole day crying? No, I cant do that. This gloom willpass.Added to this misery theres another, but of a more
67. personal nature, and it pales in comparison to the sufferingIve just told you about. Still, I cant help telling youthat lately Ive begun to feel deserted. Im surrounded bytoo great a void. I never used to give it much thought, sincemy mind was filled with my friends and having a good time.Now I think either about unhappy things or about myself. Itstaken a while, but Ive finally realized that Father, nomatter how kind he may be, cant take the place of my formerworld. When it comes to my feelings, Mother and Margot ceasedto count long ago.But why do I bother you with this foolishness? Imterribly ungrateful, Kitty, I know, but when Ive beenscolded for the umpteenth time and have all these other woesto think about as well, my head begins to reel!Yours, AnneSATURDAY, NOVEMBER 2g, 1942Dearest Kitty,Weve been using too much electricity and have nowexceeded our ration. The result: excessive economy and theprospect of having the electricity cut off. No light forfourteen days; thats a pleasant thought, isnt it? But whoknows, maybe it wont be so long! Its too dark to read afterfour or four-thirty, so we while away the time with all kindsof crazy activities: telling riddles, doing calisthenics inthe dark, speaking English or French, reviewing books --after a while everything gets boring. Yesterday I discovereda new pastime: using a good pair of binoculars to peek intothe lighted rooms of the neighbors. During the day ourcurtains cant be opened, not even an inch, but theres noharm when its so dark.I never knew that neighbors could be so interesting. Oursare, at any rate. Ive come across a few at dinner, onefamily making home movies and the dentist across the wayworking on a frightened old lady.Mr. Dussel, the man who was said to get along so well withchildren and to absolutely adore them, has turned out to bean old-fashioned disciplinarian and preacher of unbearably
68. long sermons on manners. Since I have the singular pleasure(!) of sharing my far too narrow room with His Excellency,and since Im generally considered to be the worst behaved ofthe three young people, its all I can do to avoid having thesame old scoldings and admonitions repeatedly flung at myhead and to pretend not to hear. This wouldnt be so bad ifMr. Dussel werent such a tattletale and hadnt singled outMother to be the recipient of his reports. If Mr. Dusselsjust read me the riot act, Mother lectures me all over again,this time throwing the whole book at me. And if Im reallylucky, Mrs. van D. calls me to account five minutes later andlays down the law as well!Really, its not easy being the badly brought-up center ofattention of a family of nitpickers.In bed at night, as I ponder my many sins and exaggeratedshortcomings, I get so confused by the sheer amount of thingsI have to consider that I either laugh or cry, depending onmy mood. Then I fall asleep with the strange feeling ofwanting to be different than I am or being different than Iwant to be, or perhaps of behaving differently than I am orwant to be.Oh dear, now Im confusing you too. Forgive me, but Idont like crossing things out, and in these times ofscarcity, tossing away a piece of paper is clearly taboo.So I can only advise you not to reread the above passage andto make no attempt to get to the bottom of it, becauseyoull never find your way out again!Yours, AnneMONDAY, DECEMBER 7, 1942Dearest Kitty,Hanukkah and St. Nicholas Day nearly coincided this year;they were only one day apart. We didnt make much of a fusswith Hanukkah, merely exchanging a few small gifts andlighting the candles. Since candles are in short supply, welit them for only ten minutes, but as long as we sing thesong, that doesnt matter. Mr. van Daan made a menorah out
69. of wood, so that was taken care of too.St. Nicholas Day on Saturday was much more fun. Duringdinner Bep and Miep were so busy whispering to Father thatour curiosity was aroused and we suspected they were up tosomething. Sure enough, at eight oclock we all troopeddownstairs through the hall in pitch darkness (it gave me theshivers, and I wished I was safely back upstairs!) to thealcove. We could switch on the light, since this roomdoesnt have any windows. When that was done, Father openedthe big cabinet."Oh, how wonderful!" we all cried.In the corner was a large basket decorated with colorfulpaper and a mask of Black Peter.We quickly took the basket upstairs with us. Inside was alittle gift for everyone, including an appropriate verse.Since youre famthar with the kinds of poems peo ple writeeach other on St. Nicholas Day, I wont copy them down foryou.I received a Kewpie doll, Father got bookends, and so on.Well anyway, it was a nice idea, and since the eight of ushad never celebrated St. Nicholas Day before, this was agood time to begin.Yours, AnnePS. We also had presents for everyone downstairs, a fewthings .left over from the Good Old Days; plus Miep and Bepare always grateful for money.Today we heard that Mr. van Daan s ashtray, Mr. Dusselspicture frame and Fathers bookends were made by none otherthan Mr. Voskuijl. How anyone can be so clever with hishands is a mystery to me!THURSDAY, DECEMBER 10, 1942Dearest Kitty,Mr. van Daan used to be in the meat, sausage and spice
70. business. He was hired for his knowledge of spices, and yet,to our great delight, its his sausage talents that havecome in handy now.We ordered a large amount of meat (under the counter, ofcourse) that we were planning to preserve in case there werehard times ahead. Mr. van Daan decided to make bratwurst,sausages and mettwurst. I had fun watching him put the meatthrough the grinder: once, twice, three times. Then he addedthe remaining ingredi ents to the ground meat and used a longpipe to force the mixture into the casings. We ate thebratwurst with sauerkraut for lunch, but the sausages, whichwere going to be canned, had to dry first, so we hung themover a pole suspended from the cethng. Everyone who cameinto the room burst into laughter when they saw the danglingsausages.It was such a comical sight.The kitchen was a shambles. Mr. van Daan, clad in hiswifes apron and looking fatter than ever, was working awayat the meat. What with his bloody hands, red face andspotted apron, he looked like a real butcher. Mrs. D. wastrying to do everything at once: learning Dutch out of abook, stirring the soup, watching the meat, sighing andmoaning about her broken rib. Thats what happens when old(!) ladies do such stupid exercises to get rid of their fatbehinds! Dussel had an eye infection and was sitting next tothe stove dabbing his eye with camomile tea. Pim, seated inthe one ray of sunshine coming through the window, kepthaving to move his chair this way and that to stay out of theway. His rheumatism must have been bothering him because hewas slightly hunched over and was keeping an eye on Mr. vanDaan with an agonized expression on his face. He reminded meof those aged invalids you see in the poor-house. Peter wasromping around the room with Mouschi, the cat, while Mother,Margot and I were peeling boiled potatoes. When you get rightdown to it, none of us were doing our work properly, becausewe were all so busy watching Mr. van Daan.Dussel has opened his dental practice. Just for fun, Illdescribe the session with his very first patient.Mother was ironing, and Mrs. van D., the first victim, satdown on a chair in the middle of the room. Dussel,unpacking his case with an air of importance, asked for
71. some eau de cologne, which could be used as a disinfectant,and vaseline, which would have to do for wax. He looked inMrs. van D.s mouth and found two teeth that made her wincewith pain and utter incoherent cries every time he touchedthem. After a lengthy examination (lengthy as far as Mrs. vanD. was concerned, since it actually took no longer than twominutes), Dussel began to scrape out a cavity. But Mrs. vanD. had no intention of letting him. She flailed her arms andlegs until Dussel finally let go of his probe and it . . .remained stuck in Mrs. van D.s tooth. That really did it!Mrs. van D. lashed out wildly in all directions, cried (asmuch as you can with an instrument like that in your mouth),tried to remove it, but only managed to push it in evenfarther. Mr. Dussel calmly observed the scene, his hands onhis hips, while the rest of the audience roared withlaughter. Of course, that was very mean of us. If itd beenme, Im sure I would have yelled even louder. After a greatdeal of squirming, kicking, screaming and shouting, Mrs. vanD. finally managed to yank the thing out, and Mr. Dussel wenton with his work as if nothing had happened. He was so quickthat Mrs. van D. didnt have time to pull any moreshenanigans. But then, he had more help than hes ever hadbefore: no fewer than two assis tants; Mr. van D. and Iperformed our job well. The whole scene resembled one ofthose engravings from the Middle Ages entitled" A Quack atWork." In the meantime, however, the patient was gettingrestless, since she had to keep an eye on "her" soup and"her" food. One thing is certain: itll be a while beforeMrs. van D. makes another dental appointment!Yours, AnneSUNDAY, DECEMBER 13, 1942Dearest Kitty,Im sitting here nice and cozy in the front office,peering out through a chink in the heavy curtains. Itsdusky, but theres just enough light to write by.Its really strange watching people walk past. They allseem to be in such a hurry that they nearly trip over theirown feet. Those on bicycles whiz by so fast I cant eventell whos on the bike. The people in this neighborhood
72. arent particularly attractive to look at. The childrenespecially are so dirty you wouldnt want to touch them witha ten-foot pole. Real slum kids with runny noses. I canhardly understand a word they say.Yesterday afternoon, when Margot and I were taking abath, I said, "What if we took a fishing rod and reeled ineach of those kids one by one as they walked by, stuck themin the tub, washed and mended their clothes and then. . .""And then tomorrow theyd be just as dirty and tattered asthey were before," Margot replied.But Im babbling. There are also other things to look atcars, boats and the rain. I can hear the streetcar and thechildren and Im enjoying myself.Our thoughts are subject to as little change as we are.Theyre like a merry-go-round, turning from the Jews to food,from food to politics. By the way, speaking of Jews, I sawtwo yesterday when I was peeking through ; the curtains. Ifelt as though I were gazing at one of the Seven Wonders ofthe World. It gave me such a funny feeling, as if Iddenounced them to the authorities and was now spying on theirmisfortune.Across from us is a houseboat. The captain lives therewith his wife and children. He has a small yapping dog. Weknow the little dog only by its bark and by its tail, whichwe can see whenever it runs around the deck. Oh, what ashame, its just started raining and most of the people arehidden under their umbrellas. All I can see are raincoats,and now and again the back of a stocking-capped head.Actually, I dont even need to look. By now I can recognizethe women at a glance: gone to fat from eating potatoes,dressed in a red or green coat and worn-out shoes, a shoppingbag dangling from their arms, with faces that are eithergrim or good-humored, depending on the mood of theirhusbands.Yours, AnneTUESDAY, DECEMBER 22, 1942
73. Dearest Kitty,The Annex was delighted to hear that well all bereceiving an extra quarter pound of butter for Christmas.According to the newspaper, everyone is entitled to half apound, but they mean those lucky souls who get their rationbooks from the government, not Jews in hiding like us who canonly afford to buy four rather than eight ration books on theblack market. Each of us is going to bake something with thebutter. This morning I made two cakes and a batch ofcookies. Its very busy upstairs, and Mother has informed methat Im not to do any studying or reading until all thehousehold chores have been finished.Mrs. van Daan is lying in bed nursing her bruised rib. Shecomplains all day long, constantly demands that the bandagesbe changed and is generally dissatisfied with everything.Ill be glad when she gets back on her feet and can clean upafter herself because, I must admit, shes extraordinarilyhardworking and neat, and as long as shes in good physicaland mental condition, shes quite cheerful.As if I dont hear "shh, shh" enough during the daybecause Im always making "too much" noise, my dear roommatehas come up with the idea of saying "shh, shh" to me allnight too. According to him, I shouldnt even turn over. Irefuse to take any notice of him, and the next time heshushes me, Im going to shush him right back.He gets more exasperating and egotistical as the days goby. Except for the first week, I havent seen even one of thecookies he so generously promised me. Hes partic ularlyinfuriating on Sundays, when he switches on the light at thecrack of dawn to exercise for ten minutes.To me, the torment seems to last for hours, since thechairs I use to make my bed longer are constantly beingjiggled under my sleepy head. After rounding off hislimbering-up exercises with a few vigorous arm swings, HisLordship begins dressing. His underwear is hanging on a hook,so first he lumbers over to get it and then lumbers back,past my bed. But his tie is on the table, so once again hepushes and bumps his way past the chairs.
74. But I mustnt waste any more of your time griping aboutdisgusting old men. It wont help matters anyway. My plansfor revenge, such as unscrewing the lightbulb, locking thedoor and hiding his clothes, have unfortu nately had to beabandoned in the interests of peace.Oh, Im becoming so sensible! Weve got to be reasonableabout everything we do here: studying, listen ing, holdingour tongues, helping others, being kind, making compromisesand I dont know what else! Im afraid my common sense,which was in short supply to begin with, will be used up tooquickly and I wont have any left by the time the war isover.Yours, AnneWEDNESDAY, JANUARY 13, 1943Dearest Kitty,This morning I was constantly interrupted, and as a resultI havent been able to finish a single thing Ive begun.We have a new pastime, namely, filling packages withpowdered gravy. The gravy is one of Gies & Co.s products.Mr. Kugler hasnt been able to find anyone else to fill thepackages, and besides, its cheaper if we do the job. Itsthe kind of work they do in prisons. Its incredibly boringand makes us dizzy and giggly.Terrible things are happening outside. At any time ofnight and day, poor helpless people are being dragged out oftheir homes. Theyre allowed to take only a knapsack and alittle cash with them, and even then, theyre robbed ofthese possessions on the way. Families are torn apart; men,women and children are separated. Children come home fromschool to find that their parents have disap peared. Womenreturn from shopping to find their houses sealed, theirfamthes gone. The Christians in Holland are also living infear because their sons are being sent to Germany. Everyoneis scared. Every night hundreds of planes pass over Hollandon their way to German cities, to sow their bombs on Germansoil. Every hour hundreds, or maybe even thousands, of peopleare being killed in Russia and Africa. No one can keep out
75. of the conflict, the entire world is at war, and even thoughtheAllies are doing better, the end is nowhere in sight.As for us, were quite fortunate. Luckier than millions ofpeople. Its quiet and safe here, and were using our moneyto buy food. Were so selfish that we talk about "after thewar" and look forward to new clothes and shoes, when actuallywe should be saving every penny to help others when the waris over, to salvage whatever we can.The children in this neighborhood run around in thinshirts and wooden shoes. They have no coats, no caps, nostockings and no one to help them. Gnawing on a carrot tostill their hunger pangs, they walk from their cold housesthrough cold streets to an even colder classroom. Things havegotten so bad in Holland that hordes of children stoppassersby in the streets to beg for a piece of bread.I could spend hours telling you about the suffering thewar has brought, but Id only make myself more miserable. Allwe can do is wait, as calmly as possible, for it to end. Jewsand Christians alike are waiting, the whole world iswaiting, and many are waiting for death.Yours, AnneSATURDAY, JANUARY 30, 1943Dearest Kitty,Im seething with rage, yet I cant show it. Id like toscream, stamp my foot, give Mother a good shaking, cry and Idont know what else because of the nasty words, mockinglooks and accusations that she hurls at me day after day,piercing me like arrows from a tightly strung bow, which arenearly impossible to pull from my body. Id like to screamat Mother, Margot, the van Daans, Dussel and Father too:"Leave me alone, let me have at least one night when I dontcry myself to sleep with my eyes burning and my headpounding. Let me get away, away from everything, away fromthis world!" But I cant do that. I cant let them see mydoubts, or the wounds theyve inflicted on me. I couldnt
76. bear their sympathy or their good-humored derision. It wouldonly make me want to scream even more.Everyone thinks Im showing off when I talk, ridicu louswhen Im silent, insolent when I answer, cunning when I havea good idea, lazy when Im tired, selfish when I eat onebite more than I should, stupid, cowardly, calculating,etc., etc. All day long I hear nothing but what anexasperating child I am, and although I laugh it off andpretend not to mind, I do mind. I wish I could ask God togive me another personality, one that doesnt antagonizeeveryone.But thats impossible. Im stuck with the character I wasborn with, and yet Im sure Im not a bad person. I do mybest to please everyone, more than theyd ever suspect in amillion years. When Im upstairs, I try to laugh it offbecause I dont want them to see my troubles.More than once, after a series of absurd reproaches, Ivesnapped at Mother: "I dont care what you say. Why dont youjust wash your hands of me -- Im a hopeless case." Ofcourse, shed tell me not to talk back and virtually ignoreme for two days. Then suddenly all would be forgotten andshed treat me like everyone else.Its impossible for me to be all smiles one day andvenomous the next. Id rather choose the golden mean, whichisnt so golden, and keep my thoughts to myself. Perhapssometime Ill treat the others with the same contempt as theytreat me. Oh, if only I could.Yours, AnneFRIDAY, FEBRUARY 5, 1943Dearest Kitty,Though its been ages since Ive written to you about thesquabbles, theres still no change. In the begin ning Mr.Dussel took our soon-forgotten clashes very seriously, butnow hes grown used to them and no longer tries to mediate.Margot and Peter arent exactly what youd call "young";
77. theyre both so quiet and boring. Next to them, I stick outlike a sore thumb, and Im always being told, "Margot andPeter dont act that way. Why dont you follow your sistersexample!" I hate that.I confess that I have absolutely no desire to be likeMargot. Shes too weak-willed and passive to suit me; shelets herself be swayed by others and always backs down underpressure. I want to have more spunk! But I keep ideas likethese to myself. Theyd only laugh at me if I offered this inmy defense.During meals the air is filled with tension. Fortunately,the outbursts are sometimes held in check by the "soupeaters," the people from the office who come up to have acup of soup for lunch.This afternoon Mr. van Daan again brought up the fact thatMargot eats so little. "I suppose you do it to keep yourfigure," he added in a mocking tone.Mother, who always comes to Margots defense, said in aloud voice, "I cant stand that stupid chatter of yours aminute longer."Mrs. van D. turned red as a beet. Mr. van D. staredstraight ahead and said nothing.Still, we often have a good laugh. Not long ago Mrs. vanD. was entertaining us with some bit of nonsense or another.She was talking about the past, about how well she got alongwith her father and what a flirt she was. "And you know," shecontinued, "my father told me that if a gentleman ever gotfresh, I was to say, Remem ber, sir, that Im a lady, andhed know what I meant." We split our sides laughing, as ifshed told us a good joke.Even Peter, though hes usually quiet, occasionally givesrise to hilarity. He has the misfortune of adoring foreignwords without knowing what they mean. One afternoon wecouldnt use the toilet because there were visitors in theoffice. Unable to wait, he went to the bathroom but didntflush the toilet. To warn us of the unpleasant odor, hetacked a sign to the bathroom door: "RSVP -- gas!" Of course,
78. he meant "Danger -- gas!" but he thought "RSVP" looked moreelegant. He didnt have the faintest idea that it meant"please reply."Yours, AnneSATURDAY, FEBRUARY 27, 1943Dearest Kitty,Pim is expecting the invasion any day now. Churchill hashad pneumonia, but is gradually getting better. Gandhi, thechampion of Indian freedom, is on one of his umpteenth hungerstrikes.Mrs. van D. claims shes fatalistic. But whos the mostafraid when the guns go off? None other than Petronella vanDaan.Jan brought along the episcopal letter that the bishopsaddressed to their parishioners. It was beautiful andinspiring. "People of the Netherlands, stand up and takeaction. Each of us must choose our own weapons to fight forthe freedom of our country, our people and our reli gion!Give your help and support. Act now!" This is what theyrepreaching from the pulpit. Will it do any good? Itsdefinitely too late to help our fellow Jews.Guess whats happened to us now? The owner of the buildingsold it without informing Mr. Kugler and Mr. Kleiman. Onemorning the new landlord arrived with an architect to lookthe place over. Thank goodness Mr. Kleiman was in the office.He showed the gentlemen all there was to see, with theexception of the Secret Annex. He claimed hed left the keyat home and the new owner asked no further questions. Ifonly he doesnt come back demanding to see the Annex. In thatcase, well be in big trouble!Father emptied a card file for Margot and me and filled itwith index cards that are blank on one side. This is tobecome our reading file, in which Margot and I are supposedto note down the books weve read, the author and the date.Ive learned two new words: "brothel" and "coquette." Ivebought a separate notebook for new words.
79. Theres a new division of butter and margarine. Eachperson is to get their portion on their own plate. Thedistribution is very unfair. The van Daans, who always makebreakfast for everyone, give themselves one and a half timesmore than they do us. My parents are much too afraid of anargument to say anything, which is a shame, because I thinkpeople like that should always be given a taste of their ownmedicine.Yours, AnneTHURSDAY, MARCH 4, 1943Dearest Kitty,Mrs. van D. has a new nickname -- weve started callingher Mrs. Beaverbrook. Of course, that doesnt mean anythingto you, so let me explain. A certain Mr. Beaverbrook oftentalks on the English radio about what he considers to be thefar too lenient bombardment of Germany. Mrs. van Daan, whoalways contradicts everyone, including Churchill and the newsreports, is in complete agreement with Mr. Beaverbrook. So wethought it would be a good idea for her to be married to him,and since she was flattered by the notion, weve decided tocall her Mrs. Beaverbrook from now on.Were getting a new warehouse employee, since the old oneis being sent to Germany. Thats bad for him but good for usbecause the new one wont be famthar with the building. Werestill afraid of the men who work in the warehouse.Gandhi is eating again.The black market is doing a booming business. If we hadenough money to pay the ridiculous prices, we could stuffourselves silly. Our greengrocer buys potatoes from the"Wehrmacht" and brings them in sacks to the private office.Since he suspects were hiding here, he makes a point ofcoming during lunchtime, when the warehouse employees areout.So much pepper is being ground at the moment that wesneeze and cough with every breath we take. Everyone who
80. comes upstairs greets us with an "ah-CHOO." Mrs. van D.swears she wont go downstairs; one more whiff of pepper andshes going to get sick.I dont think Father has a very nice business. Noth ingbut pectin and pepper. As long as youre in the foodbusiness, why not make candy?A veritable thunderstorm of words came crashing down onme again this morning. The air flashed with so many coarseexpressions that my ears were ringing with "Annes bad this"annd "van Daans good that." Fire and brimstone!Yours, AnneWEDNESDAY, MARCH 10, 1943Dearest Kitty,We had a short circuit last night, and besides that, theguns were booming away until dawn. I still havent gottenover my fear of planes and shooting, and I crawl intoFathers bed nearly every night for comfort. I know itsounds childish, but wait till it happens to you! The ack-ackguns make so much noise you cant hear your own voice. Mrs.Beaverbrook, the fatalist, practically burst into tears andsaid in a timid little voice, "Oh, its so awful. Oh, theguns are so loud!" -- which is another way of saying "Im soscared."It didnt seem nearly as bad by candlelight as it did inthe dark. I was shivering, as if I had a fever, and beggedFather to relight the candle. He was adamant: there wasto be no light. Suddenly we heard a burst of machine-gunfire, and thats ten times worse than antiaircraft guns.Mother jumped out of bed and, to Pims great annoyance, litthe candle. Her resolute answer to his grumbling was, "Afterall, Anne is not an ex-soldier!" And that was the end ofthat!Have I told you any of Mrs. van D.s other fears? I dontthink so. To keep you up to date on the latest adventures inthe Secret Annex, I should tell you this as well. One night
81. Mrs. van D. thought she heard loud footsteps in the attic,and she was so afraid of burglars, she woke her husband. Atthat very same moment, the thieves disappeared, and the onlysound Mr. van D. could hear was the frightened pounding ofhis fatalistic wifes heart. "Oh, Putti!" she cried. (Puttiis Mrs. van D.s pet name for her husband.) "They must havetaken all our sausages and dried beans. And what about Peter?Oh, do you think Peters still safe and sound in his bed?""Im sure they havent stolen Peter. Stop being such aninny, and let me get back to sleep!"Impossible. Mrs. van D. was too scared to sleep.A few nights later the entire van Daan family was awakenedby ghostly noises. Peter went to the attic with a flashlightand -- scurry, scurry -- what do you think he saw runningaway? A whole slew of enormous rats!Once we knew who the thieves were, we let Mouschi sleep inthe attic and never saw our uninvited guests again. . . atleast not at night.A few evenings ago (it was seven-thirty and still light),Peter went up to the loft to get some old newspapers. He hadto hold on tightly to the trapdoor to climb down the ladder.He put down his hand without looking, and nearly fell offthe ladder from shock and pain. Without realizing it, hedput his hand on a large rat, which had bitten him in thearm. By the time he reached us, white as a sheet and with hisknees knocking, the blood had soaked through his pajamas. Nowonder he was so shaken, since petting a rat isnt much fun,especially when it takes a chunk out of your arm.Yours, AnneFRIDAY, MARCH 12, 1943Dearest Kitty,May I introduce: Mama Frank, the childrens advocate!Extra butter for the youngsters, the problems facing todaysyouth -- you name it, and Mother defends the youngergeneration. After a skirmish or two, she always gets her
82. way.One of the jars of pickled tongue is spoiled. A feast forMouschi and Boche.You havent met Boche yet, despite the fact that she washere before we went into hiding. Shes the warehouse andoffice cat, who keeps the rats at bay in the storeroom.Her odd, political name can easily be explained. For awhile the firm Gies & Co. had two cats: one for thewarehouse and one for the attic. Their paths crossed fromtime to time, which invariably resulted in a fight. Thewarehouse cat was always the aggressor, while the attic catwas ultimately the victor, just as in politics. So thewarehouse cat was named the German, or "Boche," and theattic cat the Englishman, or "Tommy." Sometime after thatthey got rid of Tommy, but Boche is always there to amuse uswhen we go downstairs.VVeve eaten so many brown beans and navy beans that Icant stand to look at them. Just thinking about them makesme sick.Our evening serving of bread has been canceled.Daddy just said that hes not in a very cheerful mood. Hiseyes look so sad again, the poor man!I cant tear myself away from the book A Knock at the Doorby Ina Bakker Boudier. This family saga is extremely wellwritten, but the parts dealing with war, writers and theemancipation of women arent very good. To be honest, thesesubjects dont interest me much.Terrible bombing raids on Germany. Mr. van Daan isgrouchy. The reason: the cigarette shortage.The debate about whether or not to start eating the cannedfood ended in our favor.I cant wear any of my shoes, except my ski boots, whichare not very practical around the house. A pair of strawthongs that were purchased for 6.50 guilders were worn down
83. to the soles within a week. Maybe Miep will be able toscrounge up something on the black market.Its time to cut Fathers hair. Pim swears that I do sucha good job hell never go to another barber after the war. Ifonly I didnt nick his ear so often!Yours, AnneTHURSDAY, MARCH 18, 1943My dearest Kitty,Turkeys entered the war. Great excitement. Anxiouslyawaiting radio reports.FRIDAY, MARCH 19, 1943Dearest Kitty,In less than an hour, joy was followed by disappoint ment.Turkey hasnt entered the war yet. It was only a cabinetminister talking about Turkey giving up its neu tralitysometime soon. The newspaper vendor in Dam Square wasshouting "Turkey on Englands side!" and the papers werebeing snatched out of his hands. This was how wed heard theencouraging rumor.Thousand-guilder notes are being declared invalid. Thatllbe a blow to the black marketeers and others like them, buteven more to pe Ie in hiding and anyone else with money thatcant be accounted for. To turn in a thousand-guilder bill,you have to be able to state how you came by it and provideproof. They can still be used to pay taxes, but only untilnext week. The five-hundred notes will lapse at the sametime. Gies & Co. still had some unaccounted-forthousand-guilder bills, which they used to pay theirestimated taxes for the coming years, so everything seems tobe aboveboard.Dussel has received an old-fashioned, foot-operateddentists drill. That means Ill probably be getting athorough checkup soon.
84. Dussel is terribly lax when it comes to obeying the rulesof the house. Not only does he write letters to hisCharlotte, hes also carrying on a chatty correspondence withvarious other people. Margot, the Annexs Dutch teacher, hasbeen correcting these letters for him. Father has forbiddenhim to keep up the practice and Margot has stopped correctingthe letters, but I think it wont be long before he starts upagain.The Fuhrer has been talking to wounded soldiers. Welistened on the radio, and it was pathetic. The questions andanswers went something like this:"My name is Heinrich Scheppel.""Where were you wounded?""Near Stalingrad.""What kind of wound is it?""Two frostbitten feet and a fracture of the left arm."This is an exact report of the hideous puppet show airedon the radio. The wounded seemed proud of their wounds -- themore the better. One was so beside himself at the thought ofshaking hands (I presume he still had one) with the Fuhrerthat he could barely say a word.I happened to drop Dussels soap on the floor and step onit. Now theres a whole piece missing. Ive already askedFather to compensate him for the damages, especially sinceDussel only gets one bar of inferior wartime soap a month.Yours, AnneTHURSDAY, MARCH 25, 1943Dearest Kitty,Mother, Father, Margot and I were sitting quite pleasantlytogether last night when Peter suddenly came in and whisperedin Fathers ear. I caught the words "a barrel falling over inthe warehouse" and "someone fiddling with the door."
85. Margot heard it too, but was trying to calm me down, sinceId turned white as chalk and was extremely nervous. Thethree of us waited while Father and Peter went downstairs. Aminute or two later Mrs. van Daan came up from where shedbeen listening to the radio and told us that Pim had askedher to turn it off and tiptoe upstairs. But you know whathappens when youre trying to be quiet -- the old stairscreaked twice as loud. Five minutes later Peter and Pim, thecolor drained from their faces, appeared again to relatetheir experiences.They had positioned themselves under the staircase andwaited. Nothing happened. Then all of a sudden they heard acouple of bangs, as if two doors had been slammed shutinside the house. Pim bounded up the stairs, while Peter wentto warn Dussel, who finally pre sented himself upstairs,though not without kicking up a fuss and making a lot ofnoise. Then we all tiptoed in our stockinged feet to the vanDaans on the next floor. Mr. van D. had a bad cold and hadalready gone to bed, so we gathered around his bedside anddiscussed our suspicions in a whisper. Every time Mr. van D.coughed loudly, Mrs. van D. and I nearly had a nervous fit.He kept coughing until someone came up with the bright ideaof giving him codeine. His cough subsided immediately.Once again we waited and waited, but heard nothing.Finally we came to the conclusion that the burglars had takento their heels when they heard footsteps in an otherwisequiet building. The problem now was that the chairs in theprivate office were neatly grouped around the radio, whichwas tuned to England. If the burglars had forced the door andthe air-raid wardens were to notice it and call the police,there could be very serious repercus sions. So Mr. van Daangot up, pulled on his coat and pants, put on his hat andcautiously followed Father down the stairs, with Peter (armedwith a heavy hammer, to be on the safe side) right behindhim. The ladies (including Margot and me) waited in suspenseuntil the men returned five minutes later and reported thatthere was no sign of any activity in the building. We agreednot to run any water or flush the toilet; but sinceeveryones stomach was churning from all the tension, you canimagine the stench after wed each had a turn in thebathroom.
86. Incidents like these are always accompanied by otherdisasters, and this was no exception. Number one: theWestertoren bells stopped chiming, and Id always found themso comforting. Number two: Mr. Voskuijlleft early last night,and we werent sure if hed given Bep the key and shedforgotten to lock the door.But that was of little importance now. The night had justbegun, and we still werent sure what to expect. We weresomewhat reassured by the fact that between eight-fifteen --when the burglar had first entered the building and put ourlives in jeopardy, and ten-thirty, we hadnt heard a sound.The more we thought about it, the less likely it seemed thata burglar would have forced a door so early in the evening,when there were still people out on the streets. Besidesthat, it occurred to us that the warehouse manager at the KegCompany next door might still have been at work. What withthe excitement and the thin walls, its easy to mistake thesounds. Besides, your imagination often plays tricks on youin moments of danger.So we went to bed, though not to sleep. Father and Motherand Mr. Dussel were awake most of the night, and Im notexaggerating when I say that I hardly got a wink of sleep.This morning the men went downstairs to see if the outsidedoor was still locked, but all was well!Of course, we gave the entire office staff a blow-by-blowaccount of the incident, which had been far from pleasant.Its much easier to laugh at these kinds of things aftertheyve happened, and Bep was the only one who took usseriously.Yours, AnnePS. This morning the toilet was clogged, and Father had tostick in a long wooden pole and fish out several pounds ofexcrement and strawberry recipes (which is what we use fortoilet paper these days). Afterward we burned the pole.SATURDAY, MARCH 27, 1943Dearest Kitty,
87. Weve finished our shorthand course and are now workingon improving our speed. Arent we smart! Let me tell youmore about my "time killers" (this is what I call my courses,because all we ever do is try to make the days go by asquickly as possible so we are that much closer to the end ofour time here). I adore mythology, espe cially the Greek andRoman gods. Everyone here thinks my interest is just apassing fancy, since theyve never heard of a teenager withan appreciation of mythology. Well then, I guess Im thefirst!Mr. van Daan has a cold. Or rather, he has a scratchythroat, but hes making an enormous to-do over it. He gargleswith camomile tea, coats the roof of his mouth with atincture of myrrh and rubs Mentholatum over his chest, nose,gums and tongue. And to top it off, hes in a foul mood!Rauter, some German bigwig, recently gave a speech. "AllJews must be out of the German-occupied territories beforeJuly 1. The province of Utrecht will be cleansed of Jews [asif they were cockroaches] between April 1 and May 1, and theprovinces of North and South Holland between May 1 and June1." These poor people are being shipped off to filthiyslaughterhouses like a herd of sick and neglected cattle. ButIll say no more on the subject. My own thoughts give menightmares!One good piece of news is that the Labor Exchange was seton fire in an act of sabotage. A few days later the CountyClerks Office also went up in flames. Men posing as Germanpolice bound and gagged the guards and managed to destroysome important documents.Yours, AnneTHURSDAY, APRIL 1, 1943Dearest Kitty,Im not really in the mood for pranks (see the date).On the contrary, today I can safely quote the saying"Misfortunes never come singly." First, Mr. Kleiman, our merry
88. sunshine, had another bout of gastrointestinal hemorrhagingyesterday and will have to stay in bed for at least threeweeks. I should tell you that his stomach has been botheringhim quite a bit, and theres no cure. Second, Bep has theflu. Third, Mr. Voskuijl has to go to the hospital next week.He probably has an ulcer and will have to undergo surgery.Fourth, the managers of Pomosin Industries came fromFrankfurt to discuss the new Opekta deliveries. Father hadgone yer the important points with Mr. Kleiman, and therewasnt enough time to give Mr. Kugler a thor ough briefing.The gentlemen arrived from Frankfurt, and Father wasalready shaking at the thought of how the talks would go. "Ifonly I could be there, if only I were downstairs," heexclaimed."Go lie down with your ear to the floor. Theyll bebrought to the private office, and youll be able to heareverything.Fathers face cleared, and yesterday morning at ten-thirtyMargot and Pim (two ears are better than one) took up theirposts on the floor. By noon the talks werent finished, butFather was in no shape to continue his listen ing campaign.He was in agony from having to lie for hours in such anunusual and uncomfortable position. At two-thirty we heardvoices in the hall, and I took his place; Margot kept mecompany. The conversation was so long-winded and boring thatI suddenly fell asleep on the cold, hard linoleum. Margotdidnt dare touch me for fear theyd hear us, and of courseshe couldnt shout. I slept for a good half hour and thenawoke with a start, having forgotten every word of theimportant discussion. Luckily, Margot had paid moreattention.Yours, AnneFRIDAY, APRIL 2, 1943Dearest Kitty,Oh my, another item has been added to my list of sins.Last night~ was lying in bed, waiting for Father to tuck mein an say my prayers with me, when Mother came into the room,
89. sat on my bed and asked very gently, "Anne, Daddy isntready. How about if I listen to your prayers tonight?""No, Momsy," I replied.Mother got up, stood beside my bed for a moment and thenslowly walked toward the door. Suddenly she turned, her facecontorted with pain, and said, "I dont want to be angry withyou. I cant make you love me!" A few tears slid down hercheeks as she went out the door.I lay still, thinking how mean it was of me to reject herso cruelly, but I also knew that I was incapable of answeringher any other way. I cant be a hypocrite and pray with herwhen I dont feel like it. It just doesnt work that way. Ifelt sorry for Mother -- very, very sorry -- because for thefirst time in my life I noticed she wasnt indifferent to mycoldness. I saw the sorrow in her face when she talked aboutnot being able to make me love her. Its hard to tell thetruth, and yet the truth is that shes the one whos rejectedme. Shes the one whose tactless comments and cruel jokesabout matters I dont think are funny have made meinsensitive to any sign of love on her part. Just as my heartsinks every time I hear her harsh words, thats how her heartsank when she realized there was no more love between us.She cried half the night and didnt get any sleep. Fatherhas avoided looking at me, and if his eyes do happen to crossmine, I can read his unspoken words: "How can you be sounkind? How dare you make your mother so sad!"Everyone expects me to apologize, but this is notsomething I can apologize for, because I told the truth, andsooner or later Mothjr was bound to find out anyway. I seemto be indifferent to Mothers tears and Fathers glances, andI am, because both of them are now feeling what Ive alwaysfelt. I can only feel sorry for Mother, who will have tofigure out what her attitude should be all by herself. Formy part, I will continue to remain silent and aloof, and Idont intend to shrink from the truth, because the longerits postponed, the harder it will be for them to accept itwhen they do hear it!Yours, Anne
90. TUESDAY, APRIL 27, 1943Dearest Kitty,The house is still trembling from the aftereffects of thequarrels. Everyone is mad at everyone else: Mother and I, Mr.van Daan and Father, Mother and Mrs. van D. Terrificatmosphere, dont you think? Once again Annes usual list ofshortcomings has been extensively aired.Our German visitors were back last Saturday. They stayeduntil six. We all sat upstairs, not daring to move an inch.If theres no one else working in the building or in theneighborhood, you can hear every single step in the privateoffice. Ive got ants in my pants again from having to sitstill so long.Mr. Voskuijl has been hospitalized, but Mr. Kleimans backat the office. His stomach stopped bleeding sooner than itnormally does. He told us that the County Clerks Office tookan extra beating because the firemen flooded the entirebuilding instead of just putting out the fire. That does myheart good!The Carlton Hotel has been destroyed. Two British planesloaded with firebombs landed right on top of theGerman Officers Club. The entire corner of Vijzelstraatand Singel has gone up in flames. The number of air strikeson German cities is increasing daily. We havent had a goodnights rest in ages, and I have bags under my eyes from lackof sleep.Our food is terrible. Breakfast consists of plain,unbuttered brea and ersatz coffee. For the last two weekslunch has been e. spinach or cooked lettuce with hugepotatoes that have a rotten, sweetish taste. If youre tryingto diet, the Annex is the place to be! Upstairs they complainbitterly, but we dont think its such a tragedy.All the Dutch men who either fought or were mobilized in1940 have been called up to work in prisoner-of-war camps. Ibet theyre taking this precaution because of the invasion!
91. Yours, AnneSATURDAY, MAY 1, 1943Dearest Kitty,Yesterday was Dussels birthday. At first he acted as ifhe didnt want to celebrate it, but when Miep arrived with alarge shopping bag overflowing with gifts, he was as excitedas a little kid. His darling Lotje" has sent him eggs,butter, cookies, lemonade, bread, cognac, spice cake,flowers, oranges, chocolate, books and writing paper. Hepiled his presents on a table and displayed them for no fewerthan three days, the silly old goat!You mustnt get the idea that hes starving. We foundbread, cheese, jam and eggs in his cupboard. Its absolutelydisgraceful that Dussel, whom weve treated with suchkindness and whom we took in to save from destruction, shouldstuff himself behind our backs and not give us anything.After all, weve shared all we had with him! But whatsworse, in our opinion, is that hes so stingy with respect toMr. Kleiman, Mr. Voskuijl and Bep. He doesnt give them athing. In Dussels view the oranges that Kleiman so badlyneeds for his sick stomach will benefit his own stomach evenmore.Tonight the guns have been banging away so much that Ivealready had to gather up my belongings four times. Today Ipacked a suitcase Wl f;the stuff Id need in case we had toflee, but as M ther correctly noted,"Where would you go?"All of Holland is being punishe or the workers strikes.Martial law has been declared, and everyone is going to getone less butter coupon. What naughty children.I washed Mothers hair this evening, which is no easy taskthese days. We have to use a very sticky liquid cleanserbecause theres no more shampoo. Besides that, Moms had ahard time combing her hair because the family comb has onlyten teeth left.
92. Yours, AnneSUNDAY, MAY 2, 1943When I think about our lives here, I usually come to theconclusion that we live in a paradise compared to the Jewswho arent in hiding. All the same, later on, when everythinghas returned to normal, Ill probably wonder how we, whoalways lived in such comfortable circumstances, could have"sunk" so low. With respect to manners, I mean. For example,the same oilcloth has covered the dining table ever sinceweve been here. After so much use, its hardly what youdcall spotless. I do my best to clean it, but since thedishcloth was also purchased before we went into hiding andconsists of more holes than cloth, its a thankless task. Thevan Daans have been sleeping all winter long on the sameflannel sheet, which cant be washed because detergent isrationed and in short supply. Besides, its of such poorquality that its practically useless. Father is walkingaround in frayed trousers, and his tie is also showing signsof wear and tear. Mamas corset snapped today and is beyondrepair, while Margot is wearing a bra thats two sizes toosmall, Mother and Margot have shared the same threeundershorts the entire winter, and mine are so small theydont even cover my stomach. These are all things that can beovercome, but I sometimes wonder: how can we, whose everypossession, from my underpants to Fathers shaving brush, isso old and worn, ever hope to regain the position we hadbefore the war?SUNDAY, MAY 2, 1943The Attitude of the Annex Residents Toward the WarMr. van Daan. In the opinion of us all, this reveredgentleman has great insight into politics. Nevertheless, hepredicts well have to stay here until the end of 43. Thatsa very long time, and yet its possible to hold out untilthen. But who can assure us that this war, which has causednothing but pain and sorrow, will then be over? And thatnothing will have happened to us and our helpers long beforethat time? No one! Thats why each and every day is filledwith tension. Expectation and hope generate tension, as does
93. fear -- for example, when we hear a noise inside or outsidethe house, when the guns go off or when we read new"proclamations" in the paper, since were afraid our helpersmight be forced to go into hiding themselves sometime. Thesedays everyone is talking about having to hide. We dont knowhow many people are actually in hiding; of course, the numberis relatively small compared to the general population, butlater on well no doubt be astonished at how many good peoplein Holland were willing to take Jews and Christians, with orwithout money, into their homes. Therere also anunbelievable number of people with false identity papers.Mrs. van Daan. When this beautiful damsel (by her ownaccount) heard that it was getting easier these days toobtain false IDs, she immediately proposed that we each haveone made. As if there were nothing to it, as if Father andMr. van Daan were made of money.Mrs. van Daan is always sating the most ridiculous things,and her Putti is often exasperated. But thats notsurprising, because one day Kerli announces, "When this isallover, Im going to have myself baptized"; and the next,"As long as I can remember, Ive wanted to go to Jerusalem. Ionly feel at home with other jews!"Pim is a big optimist, but he always has his reasons.Mr. Dussel makes up everything as he goes along, andanyone wishing to contradict His Majesty had better thinktwice. In Alfred Dussels home his word is law, but thatdoesnt suit Anne Frank in the least.What the other members of the Annex family think about thewar doesnt matter. When it comes to politics, these four arethe only ones who count. Actually, only two of them do, butMadame van Daan and Dussel include themselves as well.TUESDAY, MAY 18, 1943Dearest Kit,I recently witnessed a fierce dogfight between German andEnglish pilots. Unfortunately, a couple of Allied airmen hadto jump out of their burning plane. Our milkman, who lives in
94. Halfweg, saw four Canadians sitting along the side of theroad, and one of them spoke fluent Dutch. He asked themilkman if he had a light for his cigarette, and then toldhim the crew had consisted of six men. The pilot had beenburned to death, and the fifth crew member had hidden himselfsomewhere. The German Security Police came to pick up thefour remaining men, none of whom were injured. Afterparachuting out of a flaming plane, how can anyone have suchpresence of mind?Although its undeniably hot, we have to light a fireevery other day to burn our vegetable peelings and garbage.We cant throw anything into trash cans, because thewarehouse employees might see it. One small act ofcarelessness and were done for!All college students are being asked to sign an officialstatement to the effect that they "sympathize with theGermans and approve of the New Order." Eighty percent havedecided to obey the dictates of their conscience, but thepenalty will be severe. Any student refusing to sign will besent to a German labor camp. Whats to become of the youth ofour country if theyve all got to do hard labor in Germany?Last night the guns were making so much noise that Mothershut the window; I was in Pims bed. Suddenly, right aboveour heads, we heard Mrs. van D. leap up, as if shed beenbitten by Mouschi. This was followed by a loud boom, whichsounded as if a firebomb had landed beside my bed. "Lights!Lights!" I screamed.Pim switched on the lamp. I expected the room to burstinto flames any minute. Nothing happened. We all rushedupstairs to see what was going on. Mr. and Mrs. van D. hadseen a red glow through the open window, and he thought therewas a fire nearby, while she was certain our house wasablaze. Mrs. van D. was already standing beside her bed withher knees knocking when the boom came. Dussel stayed upstairsto smoke a cigarette, and we crawled back into bed. Less thanfifteen minutes later the shooting started again. Mrs. van D.sprang out of bed and went downstairs to Dussel s room toseek the comfort she was unable to find with her spouse.Dussel welcomed her with the words "Come into my bed, mychild!"
95. We burst into peals of laughter, and the roar of the gunsbothered us no more; our fears had all been swept away.Yours, AnneSUNDAY, JUNE 13, 1943Dearest Kitty,The poem Father composed for my birthday is too nice tokeep to myself.Since Pim writes his verses only in German, Margotvolunteered to translate it into Dutch. See for yourselfwhether Margot hasnt done herself proud. It begins with theusual summary of the years events and then continues:As youngest among us, but small no more,Your life can be trying, for we have the choreOf becoming your teachers, a terrible bore."Weve got experience! Take it from me!""Weve done this all before, you see.We know the ropes, we know the same."Since time immemorial, always the same.Ones own shortcomings are nothing but fluff,But everyone elses are heavier stuff:Faultfinding comes easy when this is our plight,But its hard for your parents, try as they might,To treat you with fairness, and kindness as well;Nitpickings a habit thats hard to dispel.Men youre living with old folks, all you can doIs put up with their nagging -- its hard but its true.The pill may be bitter, but down it must go,For its meant to keep the peace, you know.The many months here have not been in vain,Since wasting time noes against your Brain.You read and study nearly all the day,Determined to chase the boredom away.The more difficult question, much harder to bear,Is "What on earth do I have to wear?Ive got no more panties, my clothes are too tight,My shirt is a loincloth, Im really a siaht!To put on my shoes I must off my toes,
96. Dh dear, Im plagued with so many woes!"Margot had trouble getting the part about food to rhyme,so Im leaving it out. But aside from that, dont you thinkits a good poem?For the rest, Ive been thoroughly spoiled and havereceived a number of lovely presents, including a big book onmy favorite subject, Greek and Roman mythology. Nor can Icomplain about the lack of candy; everyone had dipped intotheir last reserves. As the Benjamin of the Annex, I got morethan I deserve.Yours, AnneTUESDAY, JUNE 15, 1943Dearest Kitty,Heaps of things have happened, but I often think Imboring you with my dreary chitchat and that youd just assoon have fewer letters. So Ill keep the news brief.Mr. Voskuijl wasnt operated on for his ulcer after all.Once the doctors had him on the operating table and openedhim up, they saw that he had cancer. It was in such anadvanced stage that an operation was pointless. So theystitched him up again, kept him in the hospital for threeweeks, fed him well and sent him back home. But they made anunforgivable error: they told the poor man exactly what wasin store for him. He cant work anymore, and hes justsitting at home, surrounded by his eight children, broodingabout his approaching death. I feel very sorry for him andhate not being able to go out; otherwise, Id visit him asoften as I could and help take his mind off matters. Now thegood man can no longer let us know whats being said and donein the warehouse, which is a disaster for us. Mr. Voskuijlwas our greatest source of help and suppor when it came tosafety measures. We miss him very much.Next month its our turn to hand over our radio to theauthorities. Mr. Kleiman has a small set hidden in his homethat hes giving us to replace our beautiful cabinet radio.Its a pity we have to turn in our big Philips, but when
97. youre in hiding, you cant afford to bring the authoritiesdown on your heads. Of course, well put the "baby" radioupstairs. Whats a clandestine radio when there are alreadyclandestine Jews and clandestine money?All over the country people are trying to get hold of anold radio that they can hand over instead of their "moralebooster." Its true: as the reports from outside grow worseand worse, the radio, with its wondrous voice, helps us notto lose heart and to keep telling ourselves, "Cheer up, keepyour spirits high, things are bound to get better!"Yours, AnneSUNDAY, JULY 11, 1943Dear Kitty,To get back to the subject of child-rearing (for theumpteenth time), let me tell you that Im doing my best to behelpful, friendly and kind and to do all I can to keep therain of rebukes down to a light drizzle. Its not easy tryingto behave like a model child with people you cant stand,especially when you dont mean a word of it. But I can seethat a little hypocrisy gets me a lot further than myoidmethod of saying exactly what I think (even though no oneever asks my opinion or cares one way or another). Of course,I often forget my role and find it impossible to curb myanger when theyre unfair, so that they spend the next monthsaying the most impertinent girl in the world. Dont youthink Im to be pitied sometimes? Its a good thing Im notthe grouchy type, because then I might become sour andbad-tempered. I can usually see the humorous side of theirscoldings, but its easier when somebody else is being rakedover the coals.Further, Ive decided (after a great deal of thought) todrop the shorthand. First, so that I have more time for myother subjects, and second, because of my eyes. Thats a sadstory. Ive become very nearsighted and should have hadglasses ages ago. (Ugh, wont I look like a dope!). But asyou know, people in hiding cant. . .Yesterday all anyone here could talk about was Annes
98. eyes, because Mother had suggested I go to theophthalmologist with Mrs. Kleiman. Just hearing this made myknees weak, since its no small matter. Going outside! Justthink of it, walking down the street! I cant imagine it. Iwas petrified at first, and then glad. But its not as simpleas all that; the various authorities who had to approve sucha step were unable to reach a quick decision. They first hadto carefully weigh all the difficulties and risks, thoughMiep was ready to set off immediately with me in tow. In themeantime, Id taken my gray coat from the closet, but it wasso small it looked as if it might have belonged to my littlesister. We lowered the hem, but I still couldnt button it.Im really curious to see what they decide, only I dontthink theyll ever work out a plan, because the British havelanded in Sicily and Fathers all set for a "quick finish."Beps been giving Margot and me a lot of office work todo. It makes us both feel important, and its a big help toher. Anyone can file letters and make entries in a salesbook, but we do it with remarkable accuracy.Miep has so much to carry she looks like a pack mule. Shegoes forth nearly every day to scrounge up vegetables, andthen bicycles back with her purchases in large shopping bags.Shes also the one who brings five library books with herevery Saturday. We long for Saturdays because that meansbooks. Were like a bunch of little kids with a present.Ordinary people dont know how much books can mean to someonewhos cooped up.Our only diversions are reading, studying and listening tothe radio.Yours, AnneTUESDAY, JULY 13, 1943The Best Little TableYesterday afternoon Father gave me permission to ask Mr.Dussel whether he would please be so good as to allow me (seehow polite I am?) to use the table in our room two afternoonsa week, from four to five-thirty. I already sit there everyday from two-thirty to four while Dussel takes a nap, but the
99. rest of the time the room and the table are off-limits to me.Its impossible to study next door in the afternoon, becausetheres too much going on. Besides, Father sometimes likes tosit at the desk during the afternoon.So it seemed like a reasonable request, and I asked Dusselvery politely. What do you think the learned gentlemansreply was? "No." Just plain "No!"I was incensed and wasnt about to let myself be put offlike that. I asked him the reason for his "No," but thisdidnt get me anywhere. The gist of his reply was: "I have tostudy too, you know, and if I cant do that in theafternoons, I wont be able to fit it in at all. I have tofinish the task Ive set for myself; otherwise, theres nopoint in starting. Besides, you arent serious about yourstudies. Mythology -- what kind of work is that? Reading andknitting dont count either. I use that table and Im notgoing to give it up!"I replied, "Mr. Dussel, I do take my wsork seriously. Icant study next door in the afternoons, and I wouldappreciate it if you would reconsider my request!"Having said these words, the insulted Anne turned aroundand pretended the learned doctor wasnt there. I was seethingwith rage and felt that Dussel had been incredibly rude(which he certainly had been) and that Id been very polite.That evening, when I managed to get hold of Pim, I toldhim what had happened and we discussed what my next stepshould be, because I had no intention of giving up andpreferred to deal with the matter myself. Pim gave me a roughidea of how to approach Dussel, but cautioned me to waituntil the next day, since I was in such a flap. I ignoredthis last piece of advice and waited for Dussel after thedishes had been done. Pim was sitting next door and that hada calming effect.I began, "Mr. Dussel, you seem to believe furtherdiscussion of the matter is pointless, but I beg you toreconsider."Dussel gave me his most charming smile and said, "Im
100. always prepared to discuss the matter, even though itsalready been settled."I went on talking, despite Dussels repeatedinterruptions. When you first came here," I said, "we agreedthat the room was to be shared by the two of us. If we wereto divide it fairly, youd have the entire morning and Idhave the entire afternoon! Im not asking for that much, buttwo afternoons a week does seem reasonable to me."Dussel leapt out of his chair as if hed sat on a pin."You have no business talking about your rights to the room.Where am I supposed to go? Maybe I should ask Mr. van Daan tobuild me a cubbyhole in the attic. Youre not the only onewho cant find a quiet place to work. Youre always lookingfor a fight. If your sister Margot, who has more right towork space than you do, had come to me with the same request,Id never even have thought of refusing, but you. . ."And once again he brought up the business about themythology and the knitting, and once again Anne was insulted.However, I showed no sign of it and let Dussel finish: "Butno, its impossible to talk to you. Youre shamefullyself-centered. No one else matters, as long as you get yourway. Ive never seen such a child. But after all is said anddone, Ill be obliged to let you have your way, since I dontwant people saying later on that Anne Frank failed her examsbecause Mr. Dussel refused to relinquish his table!"He went on and on until there was such a deluge of words Icould hardly keep up. For one fleeting moment I thought, "Himand his lies. Ill smack his ugly mug so hard hell gobouncing off the wall!" But the next moment I thought, "Calmdown, hes not worth getting so upset about!"At long last Mr. Dussel s fury was spent, and he left theroom with an expression of triumph mixed with wrath, his coatpockets bulging with food.I went running over to Father and recounted the entirestory, or at least those parts he hadnt been able to followhimself. rim decided to talk to Dussel that very sameevening, and they spoke for more than half an hour.
101. They first discussed whether Anne should be allowed to usethe table, yes or no. Father said that he and Dussel haddealt with the subject once before, at which time hedprofessed to agree with Dussel because he didnt want tocontradict the elder in front of the younger, but that, eventhen, he hadnt thought it was fair. Dussel felt I had noright to talk as if he were an intruder laying claim toeverything in sight. But Father protested strongly, since hehimself had heard me say nothing of the kind. And so theconversation went back and forth, with Father defending my"selfishness" and my "busywork" and Dussel grumbling thewhole time.Dussel finally had to give in, and I was granted theopportunity to work without interruption two afternoons aweek. Dussel looked very sullen, didnt speak to me for twodays and made sure he occupied the table from five tofive-thirty -- all very childish, of course.Anyone whos so petty and pedantic at the age offifty-four was born that way and is never going to change.FRIDAY, JULY 16, 1943Dearest Kitty,Theres been another break-in, but this time a real one!Peter went down to the warehouse this morning at seven, asusual, and noticed at once that both the warehouse door andthe street door were open. He immediately reported this toPim, who went to the private office, tuned the radio to aGerman station and locked the door. Then they both went backupstairs. In such cases our orders are not to wash ourselvesor run any water, to be quiet, to be dressed by eight and notto go to the bathroom," and as usual we followed these to theletter. We were all glad wed slept so well and hadnt heardanything. For a while we were indignant because no one fromthe office came upstairs the entire morning; Mr. Kleiman leftus on tenterhooks until eleven-thirty. He told that theburglars had forced the outside door and the warehouse doorwith a crowbar, but when they didnt find anything worthstealing, they tried their luck on the next floor. They stoletwo cashboxes containing 40 guilders, blank checkbooks and,worst of all, coupons for 330 pounds of sugar, our entire
102. allotment. It wont be easy to wangle new ones.Mr. Kugler thinks this burglar belongs to the same gang asthe one who made an unsuccessful attempt six weeks ago toopen all three doors (the warehouse door and the two outsidedoors).The burglary caused another stir, but the Annex seems tothrive on excitement. Naturally, we were glad the cashregister and the typewriters had been safely tucked away inour clothes closet.Yours, AnnePS. Landing in Sicily. Another step closer to the . . . !MONDAY, JULY 19,1943Dearest Kitty,North Amsterdam was very heavily bombed on Sunday. Therewas apparently a great deal of destruction. Entire streetsare in ruins, and it will take a while for them to dig outall the bodies. So far there have been two hundred dead andcountless wounded; the hospitals are bursting at the seams.Weve been told of children searching forlornly in thesmoldering ruins for their dead parents. It still makes meshiver to think of the dull, distant drone that signified theapproaching destruction.FRIDAY, JULY 23, 1943Bep is currently able to get hold of notebooks, especiallyjournals and ledgers, useful for my bookkeeping sister! Otherkinds are for sale as well, but dont ask what theyre likeor how long theyll last. At the moment theyre all labeled"No Coupons Needed!" Like everything else you can purchasewithout ration stamps, theyre i totally worthless. Theyconsist of twelve sheets of gray I paper with narrow linesthat slant across the page. Margot is thinking about taking acourse in calligraphy; Ive advised her to go ahead and doit. Mother wont let me because of my eyes, but I thinkthats silly. Whether I do I that or something else, it allcomes down to the same I thing.
103. Since youve never been through a war, Kitty, and sinceyou know very little about life in hiding, in spite of myletters, let me tell you, just for fun, what we each want todo first when were able to go outside again.Margot and Mr. van Daan wish, above all else, to have ahot bath, filled to the brim, which they can lie in for morethan half an hour. Mrs. van Daan would like a cake, Dusselcan think of nothing but seeing his Charlotte, and Mother isdying for a cup of real coffee. Father would like to visitMr. Voskuijl, Peter would go downtown, and as for me, Id beso overjoyed I wouldnt know where to begin.Most of all I long to have a home of our own, to be ableto move around freely and have someone help me with myhomework again, at last. In other words, to go back toschool!Bep has offered to get us some fruit, at so-called bargainprices: grapes 2.50 guilders a pound, gooseberries 70 cents apound, one peach 50 cents, melons 75 cents a pound. No wonderthe papers write every evening in big, fat letters: "KeepPrices Down!"MONDAY, JULY 26, 1943Dear Kitty,Yesterday was a very tumultuous day, and were still allwound up. Actually, you may wonder if theres ever a day thatpasses without some kind of excitement.The first warning siren went off in the morning while wewere at breakfast, but we paid no attention, because it onlymeant that the planes were crossing the coast. I had aterrible headache, so I lay down for an hour after breakfastand then went to the office at around two.At two-thirty Margot had finished her office work and wasjust gathering her things together when the sirens beganwailing again. So she and I trooped back upstairs. None toosoon, it seems, for less than five minutes later the gunswere booming so loudly that we went and stood in the hall.
104. The house shook and the bombs kept falling. I was clutchingmy "escape bag," more because I wanted to have something tohold on to than because I wanted to run away. I know we cantleave here, but if we had to, being seen on the streets wouldbe just as dangerous as getting caught in an air raid. Afterhalf an hour the drone of engines faded and the house beganto hum with activity again. Peter emerged from his lookoutpost in the front attic, Dussel remained in the front office,Mrs. van D. felt safest in the private office, Mr. van Daanhad been watching from the loft, and those of us on thelanding spread out to watch the columns of smoke rising fromthe harbor. Before long the smell of fire was everywhere, andoutside it looked as if the city were enveloped in a thickfog.A big fire like that is not a pleasant sight, butfortunately for us it was all over, and we went baCk to ourvarious chores. Just as we were starting dinner: anotherair-raid alarm. The food was good, but I lost my appetite themoment I heard the siren. Nothing happened, however, andforty-five minutes later the all clear was sounded. After thedishes had been washed: another air-raid warning, gunfire andswarms of planes. "Oh, gosh, twice in one day," we thought,"thats twice in one day," we thought, "thats twice toomany." Little good that did us, because once agai the bombsrained down, this time on the others of the city. Accordingto British reports, Schiphol Airport was bombed. The planesdived and climbed, the air was abuzz with the drone ofengines. It was very scary, and the whole time I keptthinking, "Here it comes, this is it."I can assure you that when I went to bed at nine, my legswere still shaking. At the stroke of midnight I woke upagain: more planes! Dussel was undressing, but I took nonotice and leapt up, wide awake, at the sound of the firstshot. I stayed in Fathers bed until one, in my own bed untilone-thirty, and was back in Fathers bed at two. But theplanes kept on coming. At last they stopped firing and I wasable to go back "home" again. I finally fell asleep at halfpast two.Seven oclock. I awoke with a start and sat up in bed. Mr.van Daan was with Father. My first thought was: burglars."Everything," I heard Mr. van Daan say, and I thought
105. everything had been stolen. But no, this time it waswonderful news, the best weve had in months, maybe evensince the war began. Mussolini has resigned and the King ofItaly has taken over the government.We jumped for joy. After the awful events of yesterday,finally something good happens and brings us. . . hope! Hopefor an end to the war, hope for peace.Mr. Kugler dropped by and told us that the Fokker aircraftfactory had been hit hard. Meanwhile, there was anotherair-raid alarm this morning, with planes flying over, andanother warning siren. Ive had it up to here with alarms.Ive hardly slept, and the last thing I want to do is work.But now the suspense about Italy and the hope that the warwill be over by the end of the year are keeping us awake. .Yours, AnneTHURSDAY, JULY 29, 1943Dearest Kitty,Mrs. van Daan, Dussel and I were doing the dishes, and Iwas extremely quiet. This is very unusual for me and theywere sure to notice, so in order to avoid any questions, Iquickly racked my brains for a neutral topic. I thought thebook Henry from Across the Street might fit the bill, but Icouldnt have been more wrong; if Mrs. van Daan doesnt jumpdown my throat, Mr. Dussel does. It all boiled down to this:Mr. Dussel had recommended the book to Margot and me as anexample of excellent writing. We thought it was anything butthat. The little boy had been portrayed well, but as for therest. . . the less said the better. I mentioned something tothat effect while we were doing the dishes, and Dussellaunched into a veritable tirade."How can you possibly understand the psychology of a man?That of a child isnt so difficult [!]. But youre far tooyoung to read a book like that. Even a twenty-year-old manwould be unable to comprehend it." (So why did he go out ofhis way to recommend it to Margot and me?)Mrs. van D. and Dussel continued their harangue: "You know
106. way too much about things youre not supposed to. Youve beenbrought up all wrong. Later on, when youre older, you wontbe able to enjoy anything anymore. Youll say, Oh, I readthat twenty years ago in some book. Youd better hurry ifyou want to catch a husband or fall in love, since everythingis bound to be a disappointment to you. You already know allthere is to know in theory. But in practice? Thats anotherstory!"Can you imagine how I felt? I astonished myself by calmlyreplying, "You may think I havent been raised properly, butmany people would disagree!"They apparently believe that good child-rearing includestrying to pit me against my parents, since thats all theyever do. And not telling a girl my age about grown-upsubjects is fine. We can all see what happens when. peopleare raised that way.At that moment I could have slapped them both for pokingfun at me. I was beside myself with rage, and if I only knewhow much longer we had to put up with each others company,Id start counting the days.Mrs. van Daans a fine one to talk! She sets an exampleall right -- a bad one! Shes known to be exceedingly pushy,egotistical, cunning, calculating and perpetuallydissatisfied. Add to that, vanity and coquettishness andtheres no question about it: shes a thoroughly despicableperson. I could write an entire book about Madame van Daan,and who knows, maybe someday I will. Anyone can put on acharming exterior when they want to. Mrs. van D. is friendlyto strangers, especially men, so its easy to make a mistakewhen you first get to know her.Mother thinks that Mrs. van D. is too stupid for words,Margot that shes too unimportant, Pim that shes too ugly(literally and figuratively!), and after long observation(Im never prejudiced at the beginning), Ive come to theconclusion that shes all three of the above, and lots morebesides. She has so many bad traits, why should I single outjust one of them?Yours, Anne
107. P.S. Will the reader please take into consideration thatthis story was written before the writers fury had cooled?TUESDAY, AUGUST 3, 1943Dearest Kitty,Things are going well on the political front. Italy hasbanned the Fascist Party. The people are fighting theFascists in many places -- even the army has joined thefight. How can a country like that continue to wage waragainst England?Our beautiful radio was taken away last week. Dussel wasvery angry at Mr. Kugler for turning it in on the appointedday. Dussel is slipping lower and lower in my estimation, andhes already below zero. hatever he says about politics,history, geography or ything else is so ridiculous that Ihardly dare repeat it: Hitler will fade from history; theharbor in Rotterdam is bigger than the one in Hamburg; theEnglish are idiots for not taking the opportunity to bombItaly to smithereens; etc., etc.We just had a third air raid. I decided to grit my teethand practice being courageous.Mrs. van Daan, the one who always said "Let them fall" and"Better to end with a bang than not to end at all," is themost cowardly one among us. She was shaking like a leaf thismorning and even burst into tears. She was comforted by herhusband, with whom she recently declared a truce after a weekof squabbling; I nearly got sentimental at the sight.Mouschi has now proved, beyond a shadow of a doubt, thathaving a cat has disadvantages as well as advantages. Thewhole house is crawling with fleas, and its getting worseeach day. Mr. Kleiman sprinkled yellow powder in every nookand cranny, but the fleas havent taken the slightest notice.Its making us all very jittery; were forever imagining abite on our arms and legs or other parts of our bodies, so weleap up and do a few exercises, since it gives us an excuseto take a better look at our arms or necks. But now werepaying the price for having had so little physical exercise;
108. were so stiff we can hardly turn our heads. The realcalisthenics fell by the wayside long ago.Yours, AnneWEDNESDAY, AUGUST 4,1943Dearest Kitty,Now that weve been in hiding for a little over a year,you know a great deal about our lives. Still, I cantpossibly tell you everything, since its all so differentcompared to ordinary times and ordinary people. Nevertheless,to give you a closer look into our lives, from time to timeIll describe part of an ordinary day. Ill start with theevening and night.Nine in the evening. Bedtime always begins in the Annexwith an enormous hustle and bustle. Chairs are shifted, bedspulled out, blankets unfolded -- nothing stays where it isduring the daytime. I sleep on a small divan, which is onlyfive feet long, so we have to add a few chairs to make itlonger. Comforter, sheets, pillows, blankets: everything hasto be removed from Dussel s bed, where its kept during theday.In the next room theres a terrible creaking: thatsMargots folding bed being set up. More blankets and pillows,anything to make the wooden slats a bit more comfortable.Upstairs it sounds like thunder, but its only Mrs. van D.sbed being shoved against the window so that Her Majesty,arrayed in her pink bed jacket, can sniff the night airthrough her delicate little nostrils.Nine oclock. After Peters finished, its my turn for thebathroom. I wash myself from head to toe, and more often thannot I find a tiny flea floating in the sink (only during thehot months, weeks or days). I brush my teeth, curl my hair,manicure my nails and dab peroxide on my upper lip to bleachthe black hairs -- all this in less than half an hour.Nine-thirty. I throw on my bathrobe. With soap in onehand, and potty, hairpins, panties, curlers and a wad ofcotton in the other, I hurry out of the bathroom. The next in
109. line invariably calls me back to remove the gracefully curvedbut unsightly hairs that Ive left in the sink.Ten oclock. Time to put up the blackout screen and saygood-night. For the next fifteen minutes, at least, the houseis filled with the creaking of beds and the sigh of brokensprings, and then, provided our upstairs neighbors arenthaving a marital spat in bed, all is quiet.Eleven-thirty. The bathroom door creaks. A narrow strip oflight falls into the room. Squeaking shoes, a large coat,even larger than the man inside it . . . Dussel is returningfrom his nightly work in Mr. Kuglers office. I hear himshuffiing back and forth for ten whole minutes, the rustle ofpaper (from the food hes tucking away in his cupboard) andthe bed being made up. Then the figure disappears again, andthe only sound is the occasional suspicious noise from thebathroom.Approximately three oclock. I have to get up to use thetin can under my bed, which, to be on the safe side, has arubber mat underneath in case of leaks. I always hold mybreath while I go, since it clatters into the can like abrook down a mountainside. The potty is returned to itsplace, and the figure in the white nightgown (the one thatcauses Margot to exclaim every evening, "Oh, that indecentnighty!") climbs back into bed. A certain somebody lies awakefor about fifteen minutes, listening to the sounds of thenight. In the first place, to hear whether there are anyburglars downstairs, and then to the various beds --upstairs, next door and in my room -- to tell whether theothers are asleep or half awake. This is no fun, especiallywhen it concerns a member of the family named Dr. Dussel.First, theres the sound of a fish gasping for air, and thisis repeated nine or ten times. Then, the lips are moistenedprofusely. This is alternated with little smacking sounds,followed by a long period of tossing and turning andrearranging the pillows. After five minutes of perfect quiet,the same sequence repeats itself three more times, afterwhich hes presumably lulled himself back to sleep for awhile.Sometimes the guns go off during the night, between oneand four. Im never aware of it before it happens, but all of
110. a sudden I find myself standing beside my bed, out of sheerhabit. Occasionally Im dreaming so deeply (of irregularFrench verbs or a quarrel upstairs) that I realize only whenmy dream is over that the shooting has stopped and that Iveremained quietly in my room. But usually I wake up. Then Igrab a pillow and a handkerchief, throw on my robe andslippers and dash next door to Father, just the way Margotdescribed in this birthday poem:When shots rino out in the dark of night,The door creaks open and into sightCome a hanky, a pillow, a figure in white. . .Once Ive reached the big bed, the worst is over, exceptwhen the shooting is extra loud.Six forty-five. Brrring . . . the alarm clock, whichraises its shrill voice at any hour of the day or night,whether you want it to or not. Creak. . . wham. . . Mrs. vanD. turns it off. Screak . . . Mr. van D. gets up, puts on thewater and races to the bathroom.Seven-fifteen. The door creaks again. Dussel can go to thebathroom. Alone at last, I remove the blackout screen . . .and a new day begins in the Annex.Yours, AnneTHURSDAY, AUGUST 5, 1943Dearest Kitty,Today lets talk about the lunch break.Its twelve-thirty. The whole gang breathes a sigh ofrelief: Mr. van Maaren, the man with the shady past, andMr. de Kok have gone home for lunch.Upstairs you can hear the thud of the vacuum cleaner onMrs. van D.s beautiful and only rug. Margot tucks a fewbooks under her arm and heads for the class for "slowlearners," which is what Dussel seems to be. Pim goes andsits in a corner with his constant companion, Dickens, in
111. hopes of finding a bit of peace and quiet. Mother hastensupstairs to help the busy little housewife, and I tidy upboth the bathroom and myself at the same time.Twelve forty-five. One by one they trickle in: first Mr.Gies and then either Mr. Kleiman or Mr. Kugler, followedby Bep and sometimes even Miep.One. Clustered around the radio, they all listen raptly tothe BBC. This is the only time the members of the Annexfamily dont interrupt each other, since even Mr. van Daancant argue with the speaker.One-fifteen. Food distribution. Everyone from downstairsgets a cup of soup, plus dessert, if there happens to be any.A contented Mr. Gies sits on the divan or leans against thedesk with his newspaper, cup and usually the cat at his side.If one of the three is missing, he doesnt hesitate to lethis protest be heard. Mr. Kleiman relates the latest newsfrom town, and hes an excellent source. Mr. Kugler hurriesup the stairs, gives a short but solid knock on the door andcomes in either wringing his hands or rubbing them in glee,depending on whether hes quiet and in a bad mood ortalkative and in a good mood.One forty-five. Everyone rises from the table and goesabout their business. Margot and Mother do the dishes, Mr.and Mrs. van D. head for the divan, Peter for the attic,Father for his divan, Dussel too, and Anne does her homework.What comes next is the quietest hour of the day; whentheyre all asleep, there are no disturbances. To judge byhis face, Dussel is dreaming of food. But I dont look at himlong, because the time whizzes by and before you know it,itll be 4 P.M. and the pedantic Dr. Dussel will be standingwith the clock in his hand because Im one minute ,lateclearing off the table.Yours, AnneSATURDAY, AUGUST 7, 1943Dearest Kitty,
112. A few weeks ago I started writing a story, something Imade up from beginning to end, and Ive enjoyed it so muchthat the products of my pen are piling up.Yours, AnneMONDAY, AUGUST 9, 1943Dearest Kitty,We now continue with a typical day in the Annex. Sinceweve already had lunch, its time to describe dinner.Mr. van Daan. Is served first, and takes a generousportion of whatever he likes. Usually joins in theconversation, never fails to give his opinion. Once hesspoken, his word is final. If anyone dares to suggestotherwise, Mr. van D. can put up a good fight. Oh, he canhiss like a cat. . . but Id rather he didnt. Once youveseen it, you never want to see it again. His opinion is thebest, he knows the most about everything. Granted, the manhas a good head on his shoulders, but its swelled to nosmall degree.Madame. Actually, the best thing would be to say nothing.Some days, especially when a foul mood is on the way, herface is hard to read. If you analyze the discussions, yourealize shes not the subject, but the guilty party! A facteveryone prefers to ignore. Even so, you could call her theinstigator. Stirring up trouble, now thats what Mrs. vanDaan calls fun. Stirring up trouble between Mrs. Frank andAnne. Margot and Mr. Frank aren t qwte as easy.But lets return to the table. Mrs. van D. may think shedoesnt always get enough, but thats not the case. Thechoicest potatoes, the tastiest morsel, the tenderest bit ofwhatever there is, thats Madames motto. The others can allhave their turn, as long as I get the best. (Exactly what sheaccuses Anne Frank of doing.) Her second watchword is: keeptalking. As long as somebodys listening, it doesnt seem tooccur to her to wonder whether theyre interested. She mustthink that whatever Mrs. van Daan says will interesteveryone.
113. Smile coquettishly, pretend you know everything, offereveryone a piece of advice and mother them -- thats sure tomake a good impression. But if you take a better look, thegood impression fades. One, shes hardworking; two, cheerful;three, coquettish -- and sometimes a cute face. ThatsPetronella van Daan.The third diner. Says very little. Young Mr. van Daan isusually quiet and hardly makes his presence known. As far ashis appetite is concerned, hes a Danaldean vessel that nevergets full. Even after the most substantial meal, he can lookyou calmly in the eye and claim he could have eaten twice asmuch.Number four -- Margot. Eats like a bird and doesnt talkat all. She eats only vegetables and fruit. "Spoiled," in theopinion of the van Daans. "Too little exercise and freshair," in ours.Beside her -- Mama. Has a hearty appetite, does her shareof the talking. No one has the impression, as they do withMrs. van Daan, that this is a housewife. Whats thedifference between the two? Well, Mrs. van D. does thecooking and Mother does the dishes and polishes thefurniture.Numbers six and seven. I wont say much about Father andme. The former is the most modest person at the table. Healways looks to see whether the others have been servedfirst. He needs nothing for himself; the best things are forthe children. Hes goodness personified. Seated next to himis the Annexs little bundle of nerves.Dussel. Help yourself, keep your eyes on the food, eat anddont talk. And if you have to say something, then forgoodness sake talk about food. That doesnt lead toquarrels, just to bragging. He consumes enormous portions,and "no" is not part of his vocabulary, whether the food isgood or bad.Pants that come up to his chest, a red jacket, blackpatent-leather slippers and horn-rimmed glasses -- thats howhe looks when hes at work at the little table, always
114. studying and never progressing. This is interrupted only byhis afternoon nap, food and -- his favorite spot -- thebathroom. Three, four or five times a day theres bound tobe someone waiting outside the bathroom door, hoppingimpatiently from one foot to another, trying to hold it inand barely managing. Does Dussel care? Not a whit. Fromseven-fifteen to seven-thirty, from twelve-thirty to one,from two to two-fifteen, from four to four-fifteen, from sixto six-fifteen, from eleven-thirty to twelve. You can setyour watch by them; these are the times for his "regularsessions." He never deviates or lets himself be swayed by thevoices outside the door, begging him to open up before adisaster occurs.Number nine is not part of our Annex family, although shedoes share our house and table. Hep has a healthy appetite.She cleans her plate and isnt choosy. Heps easy to pleaseand that pleases us. She can be characterized as follows:cheerful, good-humored, kind and willing.TUESDAY, AUGUST 10, 1943Dearest Kitty, .A new idea: during meals I talk more to myself than to theothers, which has two advantages. First, theyre glad theydont have to listen to my continuous chatter, and second, Idont have to get annoyed by their opinions. I dont think myopinions are stupid but other people do, so its better tokeep them to myself. I apply the same tactic when I have toeat something I loathe. I put the dish in front of me,pretend its delicious, avoid looking at it as much aspossible, and its gone before Ive had time to realize whatit is. When I get up in the morning, another verydisagreeable moment, I leap out of bed, think to myself,"Youll be slipping back under the covers soon," walk to thewindow, take down the blackout screen, sniff at the crackuntil I feel a bit of fresh air, and Im awake. I strip thebed as fast as I can so I wont be tempted to get back in. Doyou know what Mother calls this sort of thing? The art ofliving. Isnt that a funny expression?Weve all been a little confused this past week becauseour dearly beloved Westertoren bells have been carted off to
115. be melted down for the war, so we have no idea of the exacttime, either night or day. I still have hopes that theyllcome up with a substitute, made of tin or copper or some suchthing, to remind the neighborhood of the clock.Everywhere I go, upstairs or down, they all cast admiringglances at my feet, which are adorned by a pair ofexceptionally beautiful (for times like these!) shoes. Miepmanaged to snap them up for 27.50 guilders. Burgundy-coloredsuede and leather with medium-sized high heels. I feel as ifI were on stilts, and look even taller than I already am.Yesterday was my unlucky day. I pricked my right thumbwith the blunt end of a big needle. As a result, Margot hadto peel potatoes for me (take the good with the bad), andwriting was awkward. Then I bumped into the cupboard door sohard it nearly knocked me over, and was scolded for makingsuch a racket. They wouldnt let me run water to bathe myforehead, so now Im walking around with a giant lump over myright eye. To make matters worse, the little toe on my rightfoot got stuck in the vacuum cleaner. It bled and hurt, butmy other ailments were already causing me so much troublethat I let this one slide, which was stupid of me, becausenow Im walking around with an infected toe. What with thesalve, the gauze and the tape, I cant get my heavenly newshoe on my foot.Dussel has put us in danger for the umpteenth time. Heactually had Miep bring him a book, an anti-Mussolini tirade,which has been banned. On the way here she was knocked downby an SS motorcycle. She lost her head and shouted "Youbrutes!" and went on her way. I dont dare think what wouldhave happened if shed been taken down to headquarters.Yours, AnneA Daily Chore in Our Little Community: Peeling Potatoes!One person goes to get some newspapers; another, theknives (keeping the best for himself, of course); the third,the potatoes; and the fourth, the water.Mr. Dussel begins. He may not always peel them very well,but he does peel nonstop, glancing left and right to see if
116. everyone is doing it the way he does. No, theyre not!"Look, Anne, I am taking peeler in my hand like so andgoing from the top to bottom! Nein, not so . . . but so!""I think my way is easier, Mr. Dussel," I say tentatively."But this is best way, Anne. This you can take from me. Ofcourse, it is no matter, you do the way you want."We go on peeling. I glance at Dussel out of the corner ofmy eye. Lost in thought, he shakes his head (over me, nodoubt), but says no more.I keep on peeling. Then I look at Father, on the otherside of me. To Father, peeling potatoes is not a chore, butprecision work. When he reads, he has a deep wrinkle in theback of his head. But when hes preparing potatoes, beans orvegetables, he seems to be totally absorbed in his task. Heputs on his potato-peeling face, and when its set in thatparticular way, it would be impossible for him to turn outanything less than a perfectly peeled potato.I keep on working. I glance up for a second, but thatsall the time I need. Mrs. van D. is trying to attractDussels attention. She starts by looking in his direction,but Dussel pretends not to notice. She winks, but Dussel goeson peeling. She laughs, but Dussel still doesnt look up.Then Mother laughs too, but Dussel pays them no mind. Havingfailed to achieve her goal, Mrs. van D. is obliged to changetactics. Theres a brief silence. Then she says, "Putti, whydont you put on an apron? Otherwise, Ill have to spend allday tomorrow trying to get the spots out of your suit!""Im not getting it dirty."Another brief silence. "Putti, why dont you sit down?"Im fine this way. I like standing up!"Silence."Putti, look out, du spritzt schon!".* [*Now youresplashing!]
117. "I know, Mommy, but Im being careful."Mrs. van D. casts about for another topic. "Tell me,Putti, why arent the British carrying out any bombing raidstoday?""Because the weathers bad, Kerli!""But yesterday it was such nice weather and they werentflying then either.""Lets drop the subject.""Why? Cant a person talk about that or offer anopinion?"Well, why in the world not?""Oh, be quiet, Mammichen!"* [*Mommy]"Mr. Frank always answers his wife."Mr. van D. is trying to control himself. This remarkalways rubs him the wrong way, but Mrs. van D.s not one toquit: "Oh, theres never going to be an invasion!"Mr. van D. turns white, and when she notices it, Mrs. vanD. turns red, but shes not about to be deterred: "TheBritish arent doing a thing!"The bomb bursts. "And now shut up, Donnerwetter noch mal!*[*For crying out loud!"]Mother can barely stifle a laugh, and I stare straightahead.Scenes like these are repeated almost daily, unlesstheyve just had a terrible fight. In that case, neither Mr.nor Mrs. van D. says a word.Its time for me to get some more potatoes. I go up to theattic, where Peter is busy picking fleas from the cat.
118. He looks up, the cat notices it, and whoosh. . . hesgone. Out the window and into the rain gutter.Peter swears; I laugh and slip out of the room.Freedom in the AnnexFive-thirty. Beps arrival signals the beginning of ournightly freedom. Things get going right away. I go upstairswith Bep, who usually has her dessert before the rest of us.The moment she sits down, Mrs. van D. begins stating herwishes. Her list usually starts with "Oh, by the way, Bep,something else Id like. . ." Bep winks at me. Mrs. van D.doesnt miss a chance to make her wishes known to whoevercomes upstairs. It must be one of the reasons none of themlike to go up there.Five forty-five. Bep leaves. I go down two floors to havea look around: first to the kitchen, then to the privateoffice and then to the coal bin to open the cat door forMouschi.After a long tour of inspection, I wind up in Mr. Kuglersoffice. Mr. van Daan is combing all the drawers and files fortodays mail. Peter picks up Boche and the warehouse key; Pimlugs the typewriters upstairs; Margot looks around for aquiet place to do her office work; Mrs. van D. puts a kettleof water on the stove; Mother comes down the stairs with apan of potatoes; we all know our jobs.Soon Peter comes back from the warehouse. The firstquestion they ask him is whether hes remembered the bread.No, he hasnt. He crouches before the door to the frontoffice to make himself as small as possible and crawls on hishands and knees to the steel cabinet, takes out the bread andstarts to leave. At any rate, thats what he intends to do,but before he knows whats happened, Mouschi has jumped overhim and gone to sit under the desk.Peter looks all around him. Aha, theres the cat! Hecrawls back into the office and grabs the cat by the tail.Mouschi hisses, Peter sighs. What has he accomplished?Mouschis now sitting by the window licking herself, verypleased at having escaped Peters clutches. Peter has no
119. choice but to lure her with a piece of bread. Mouschi takesthe bait, follows him out, and the door closes.I watch the entire scene through a crack in the door.Mr. van Daan is angry and slams the door. Margot and Iexchange looks and think the same thing: he must have workedhimself into a rage again because of some blunder on Mr.Kuglers part, and hes forgotten all about the Keg Companynext door.Another step is heard in the hallway. Dussel comes in,goes toward the window with an air of propriety, sniffs. . .coughs, sneezes and clears his throat. Hes out of luck -- itwas pepper. He continues on to the front office. The curtainsare open, which means he cant get at his writing paper. Hedisappears with a scowl.Margot and I exchange another glance. "One less page forhis sweetheart tomorrow," I hear her say. I nod in agreement.An elephants tread is heard on the stairway. Its Dussel,seeking comfort in his favorite spot.We continue working. Knock, knock, knock. . . Three tapsmeans dinnertime!MONDAY, AUGUST 23, 1943Wenn Die Uhr Halb Neune Schlaat . . .* [* When the clockstrikes half past eight.]Margot and Mother are nervous. "Shh . . . Father. Bequiet, Otto. Shh . . . Pim! Its eight-thirty.Come here, you cant run the water anymore. Walk softly!"A sample of whats said to Father in the bathroom. At thestroke of half past eight, he has to be in the living room.No running water, no flushing toilet, no walking around, nonoise whatsoever. As long as the office staff hasnt arrived,sounds travel more easily to the warehouse.The door opens upstairs at eight-twenty, and this isfollowed by three gentle taps on the floor. . . Annes hot
120. cereal. I clamber up the stairs to get my doggie dish.Back downstairs, everything has to be done quickly,quickly: I comb my hair, put away the potty, shove the bedback in place. Quiet! The clock is striking eight-thirty!Mrs. van D. changes shoes and shuffles through the room inher slippers; Mr. van D. too -- a veritable Charlie Chaplin.All is quiet.The ideal family scene has now reached its high point. Iwant to read or study and Margot does too. Father and Motherditto. Father is sitting (with Dickens and the dictionary, ofcourse) on the edge of the sagging, squeaky bed, whichdoesnt even have a decent mattress. Two bolsters can bepiled on top of each other. "I dont need these," he thinks."I can manage without them!"Once he starts reading, he doesnt look up. He laughs nowand then and tries to get Mother to read a story."I dont have the time right now!"He looks disappointed, but then continues to read.A little while later, when he comes across another goodpassage, he tries again: "You have to read this, Mother!"Mother sits on the folding bed, either reading, sewing,knitting or studying, whichever is next on her list. An ideasuddenly occurs to her, and she quickly says, so as not toforget, "Anne, remember to . . . Margot, jot this down. . . "After a while its quiet again. Margot slams her bookshut; Father knits his forehead, his eyebrows forming a funnycurve and his wrinkle of concentration reappearing I at theback of his head, and he buries himself in his book 1 again;Mother starts chatting with Margot; and I get curious andlisten too. Pim is drawn into the conversation . . . Nineoclock. Breakfast!FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 10, 1943Dearest Kitty,
121. Every time I write to you, something special has happened,usually unpleasant rather than pleasant. This time, however,something wonderful is going on.On Wednesday, September 8, we were listening to the sevenoclock news when we heard an announcement: "Here is some ofthe best news of the war so far: Italy has capitulated."Italy has unconditionally surrendered! The Dutch broadcastfrom England began at eight-fifteen with the news:"Listeners, an hour and fifteen minutes ago, just as Ifinished writing my daily report, we received the wonderfulnews of Italys capitulation. I tell you, I never tossed mynotes into the wastepaper basket with more delight than I didtoday!""God Save the King," the American national anthem and theRussian Internationale" were played. As always, the Dutchprogram was uplifting without being too optimistic.The British have landed in Naples. Northern Italy isoccupied by the Germans. The truce was signed on Friday,September 3, the day the British landed in Italy. The Germansare ranting and raving in all the newspapers at the treacheryof Badoglio and the Italian king.Still, theres bad news as well. Its about Mr. Kleiman.As you know, we all like him very much. Hes unfailinglycheerful and amazingly brave, despite the fact that hesalways sick and in pain and cant eat much or do a lot ofwalking. "When Mr. Kleiman enters a room, the sun begins toshine," Mother said recently, and shes absolutely right.Now it seems he has to go to the hospital for a verydifficult operation on his stomach, and will have to staythere for at least four weeks. You should have seen him whenhe told us good-bye. He acted so normally, as though he werejust off to do an errand.Yours, AnneTHURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 16, 1943Dearest Kitty,
122. Relationships here in the Annex are getting worse all thetime. We dont dare open our mouths at mealtime (except toslip in a bite of food), because no matter what we say,someone is bound to resent it or take it the wrong way. Mr.Voskuijl occasionally comes to visit us. Unfortunately, hesnot doing very well. He isnt making it any easier for hisfamily, because his attitude seems to be: what do I care, Imgoing to die anyway! When I think how touchy everyone ishere, I can just imagine what it must be like at theVoskuijls.Ive been taking valerian every day to fight the anxietyand depression, but it doesnt stop me from being even moremiserable the next day. A good hearty laugh would help betterthan ten valerian drops, but weve almost forgotten how tolaugh. Sometimes Im afraid my face is going to sag with allthis sorrow and that my mouth is going to permanently droopat the corners. The others arent doing any better. Everyonehere is dreading the great terror known as winter.Another fact that doesnt exactly brighten up our days isthat Mr. van Maaren, the man who works in the warehouse, isgetting suspicious about the Annex. A person with any brainsmust have noticed by now that Miep sometimes says shes goingto the lab, Bep to the file room and Mr. Kleiman to theOpekta supplies, while Mr. Kugler claims the Annex doesntbelong to this building at all, but to the one next door.We wouldnt care what Mr. van Maaren thought of thesituation except that hes known to be unreliable and topossess a high degree of curiosity. Hes not one who can beput off with a flimsy excuse.One day Mr. Kugler wanted to be extra cautious, so attwenty past twelve he put on his coat and went to thedrugstore around the corner. Less than five minutes later hewas back, and he sneaked up the stairs like a thief to visitus. At one-fifteen he started to leave, but Bep met him onthe landing and warned him that van Maaren was in the office.Mr. Kugler did an about-face and stayed with us untilone-thirty. Then he took off his shoes and went in hisstockinged feet (despite his cold) to the front attic anddown the other stairway, taking one step at a time to avoidthe creaks. It took him fifteen minutes to negotiate the
123. stairs, but he wound up safely in the office after havingentered from the outside.In the meantime, Bep had gotten rid of van Maaren and cometo get Mr. Kugler from the Annex. But hed already left andat that moment was still tiptoeing down the stairs. What mustthe passersby have thought when they saw the manager puttingon his shoes outside? Hey, you there, in the socks!Yours, AnneWEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 1943Dearest Kitty,Its Mrs. van Daans birthday. Other than one ration stampeach for cheese, meat and bread, all she received from us wasa jar of jam. Her husband, Dussel and the office staff gaveher nothing but flowers and also food. Such are the times welive in!Bep had a nervous fit last week because she had so manyerrands to do. Ten times a day people were sending her outfor something, each time insisting she go right away or goagain or that shed done it all wrong. And when you thinkthat she has her regular office work to do, that Mr. Kleimanis sick, that Miep is home with a cold and that Bep herselfhas a sprained ankle, boyfriend troubles and a grouchyfather, its no wonder shes at the end of her tether. Wecomforted her and told her that if shed put her foot downonce or twice and say she didnt have the time, the shoppinglists would shrink of their own accord.Saturday there was a big drama, the likes of which havenever been seen here before. It started with a discussion ofvan Maaren and ended in a general argument and tears. Dusselcomplained to Mother that he was being treated like a leper,that no one was friendly to him and that, after all, hehadnt done anything to deserve it. This was followed by alot of sweet talk, which luckily Mother didnt fall for thistime. She told him we were disappointed in him and that, onmore than one occasion, hed been a source of greatannoyance. Dussel promised her the moon, but, as usual, wehavent seen so much as a beam.
124. Theres trouble brewing with the van Daans, I can tell!Fathers furious because theyre cheating us: theyve beenholding back meat and other things. Oh, what kind ofbombshell is about to burst now? If only I werent soinvolved in all these skirmishes! If only I could leave here!Theyre driving us crazy!Yours, AnneSUNDAY, OCTOBER 17, 1943Dearest Kitty,Mr. Kleiman is back, thank goodness! He looks a bit pale,and yet he cheerfully set off to sell some clothes for Mr.van Daan. The disagreeable fact is that Mr. van Daan has runout of money. He lost his last hundred guilders in thewarehouse, which is still creating trouble for us: the menare wondering how a hundred guilders could wind up in thewarehouse on a Monday morning. Suspicion abounds. Meanwhile,the hundred guilders have been stolen. Whos the thief?But I was talking about the money shortage. Mrs. van D.has scads of dresses, coats and shoes, none of which shefeels she can do without. Mr. van D.s suit is difficult tosell, and Peters bike was put on the block, but is backagain, since nobody wanted it. But the story doesnt endthere. You see, Mrs. van D. is going to have to part with herfur coat. In her opinion, the firm should pay for our upkeep,but thats ridiculous. They just had a flaming row about itand have entered the "oh, my sweet Putti" and "darling Kerli"stage of reconciliation.My mind boggles at the profanity this honorable house hashad to endure in the past month. Father walks around with hislips pressed together, and whenever he hears his name, helooks up in alarm, as ifhes afraid hell be called upon toresolve another delicate problem. Mothers so wrought up hercheeks are blotched with red, Margot complains of headaches,Dussel cant sleep, Mrs. van D. frets and fumes all day long,and Ive gone completely round the bend. To tell you thetruth, I sometimes forget who were at odds with and whowere not. The only way to take my mind off it is to study,
125. and Ive been doing a lot of that lately.Yours, AnneFRIDAY, OCTOBER 29,1943My dearest Kitty,Mr. Kleiman is out again; his stomach wont give him amoments peace. He doesnt even know whether its stoppedbleeding. He came to tell us he wasnt feeling well and wasgoing home, and for the first time he seemed really down.Mr. and Mrs. van D. have had more raging battles. Thereason is simple: theyre broke. They wanted to sell anovercoat and a suit of Mr. van D. s, but were unable to findany buyers. His prices were way too high.Some time ago Mr. Kleiman was talking about a furrier heknows. This gave Mr. van D. the idea of selling his wifesfur coat. Its made of rabbit skin, and shes had it forseventeen years. Mrs. van D. got 325 guilders for it, anenormous amount. She wanted to keep the money herself to buynew clothes after the war, and it took some doing before Mr.van D. could make her understand that it was desperatelyneeded to cover household expenses.You cant imagine the screaming, shouting, stamping offeet and swearing that went on. It was terrifying. My familystood holding its breath at the bottom of the stairs, in caseit might be necessary to drag them apart. All the bickering,tears and nervous tension have become such a stress andstrain that I fall into my bed at night crying and thankingmy lucky stars that I have half an hour to myself.Im doing fine, except Ive got no appetite. I keephearing: "Goodness, you look awful!" I must admit theyredoing their best to keep me in condition: theyre plying mewith dextrose, cod-liver oil, brewers yeast and calcium. Mynerves often get the better of me, especially on Sundays;thats when I really feel miserable. The atmosphere isstifling, sluggish, leaden. Outside, you dont hear a singlebird, and a deathly, oppressive silence hangs over the houseand clings to me as if it were going to drag me into the
126. deepest regions of the underworld. At times like these,Father, Mother and Margot dont matter to me in the least. Iwander from room to room, climb up and down the stairs andfeel like a songbird whose wings have been ripped off and whokeeps hurling itself against the bars of its dark cage. "Letme out, where theres fresh air and laughter!" a voice withinme cries. I dont even bother to reply anymore, but lie downon the divan. Sleep makes the silence and the terrible feargo by more quickly, helps pass the time, since itsimpossible to kill it.Yours, AnneWEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 3, 1943Dearest Kitty,To take our minds off matters as well as to develop them,Father ordered a catalog from a correspondence school. Margotpored through the thick brochure three times without findinganything to her liking and within her budget. Father waseasier to satisfy and decided to write and ask for a triallesson in "Elementary Latin." No sooner said than done. Thelesson arrived, Margot set to work enthusiastically anddecided to take the course, despite the expense. Its muchtoo hard for me, though Id really like to learn Latin.To give me a new project as well, Father asked Mr. Kleimanfor a childrens Bible so I could finally learn somethingabout the New Testament."Are you planning to give Anne a Bible for Hanukkah?"Margot asked, somewhat perturbed."Yes. . . Well, maybe St. Nicholas Day would be a betteroccasion," Father replied.Jesus and Hanukkah dont exactly go together.Since the vacuum cleaners broken, I have to take an oldbrush to the rug every night. The windows closed, thelights on, the stoves burning, and there I am brushing awayat the rug. "Thats sure to be a problem," I thought tomyself the first time. "Therere bound to be complaints." I
127. was right: Mother got a headache from the thick clouds ofdust whirling around the room, Margots new Latin dictionarywas caked with dirt, and rim grumbled that the floor didntlook any different anyway. Small thanks for my pains.Weve decided that from now on the stove is going to belit at seven-thirty on Sunday mornings instead offive-thirty. I think its risky. What will the neighborsthink of our smoking chimney?Its the same with the curtains. Ever since we first wentinto hiding, theyve been tacked firmly to the windows.Sometimes one of the ladies or gentlemen cant resist theurge to peek outside. The result: a storm of reproaches. Theresponse: "Oh, nobody will notice." Thats how every act ofcarelessness begins and ends. No one will notice, no one willhear, no one will pay the least bit of attention. Easy tosay, but is it true?At the moment, the tempestuous quarrels have subsided;only Dussel and the van Daans are still at loggerheads. WhenDussel is talking about Mrs. van D., he invariably calls herthat old bat" or "that stupid hag," and conversely, Mrs. vanD. refers to our ever so learned gentleman as an "old maid"or a "touchy neurotic spinster, etc.The pot calling the kettle black!Yours, AnneMONDAY EVENING, NOVEMBER 8,1943Dearest Kitty,If you were to read all my letters in one sitting, youdbe struck by the fact that they were written in a variety ofmoods. It annoys me to be so dependent on the moods here inthe Annex, but Im not the only one: were all subject tothem. If Im engrossed in a book, I have to rearrange mythoughts before I can mingle with other people, becauseotherwise they might think I was strange. As you can see, Imcurrently in the middle of a depression. I couldnt reallytell you what set it off, but I think it stems from mycowardice, which confronts me at every turn. This evening,
128. when Bep was still here, the doorbell rang long and loud. Iinstantly turned white, my stomach churned, and my heart beatwildly -- and all because I was afraid.At night in bed I see myself alone in a dungeon, withoutFather and Mother. Or Im roaming the streets, or the Annexis on fire, or they come in the middle of the night to takeus away and I crawl under my bed in desperation. I seeeverything as if it were actually taking place. And to thinkit might all happen soon!Miep often says she envies us because we have such peaceand quiet here. That may be true, but shes obviously notthinking about our fear.I simply cant imagine the world will ever be normal againfor us. I do talk about "after the war," but its as if Iwere talking about a castle in the air, something that can Iinever come true.I see the ei ght of us in the Annex as if we were a patchof blue sky surrounded by menacing black clouds. Theperfectly round spot on which were standing is still safe,but the clouds are moving in on us, and the ring between usand the approaching danger is being pulled tighter andtighter. Were surrounded by darkness and danger, and in ourdesperate search for a way out we keep bumping into eachother. We look at the fighting down below and the peace andbeauty up above. In the meantime, weve been cut off by thedark mass of clouds, so that we can go neither up nor down.It looms before us like an impenetrable wall, trying to crushus, but not yet able to. I can only cry out and implore, "Oh,ring, ring, open wide and let us out!"Yours, AnneTHURSDAY, NOVEMBER 11, 1943Dearest Kitty,I have a good title for this chapter:Ode to My Fountain PenIn Memoriam
129. My fountain pen was always one of my most prizedpossessions; I valued it highly, especially because it had athick nib, and I can only write neatly with thick nibs. Ithas led a long and interesting fountain-pen life, which Iwill summarize below.When I was nine, my fountain pen (packed in cotton)arrived as a "sample of no commercial value" all the way fromAachen, where my grandmother (the kindly donor) used to live.I lay in bed with the flu, while the February winds howledaround the apartment house. This splendid fountain pen camein a red leather case, and I showed it to my girlfriends thefirst chance I got. Me, Anne Frank, the proud owner of afountain pen.When I was ten, I was allowed to take the pen to school,and to my surprise, the teacher even let me write with it.When I was eleven, however, my treasure had to be tucked awayagain, because my sixth-grade teacher allowed us to use onlyschool pens and inkpots. When I was twelve, I started at theJewish Lyceum and my fountain pen was given a new case inhonor of the occasion. Not only did it have room for apencil, it also had a zipper, which was much more impressive.When I was thirteen, the fountain pen went with me to theAnnex, and together weve raced through countless diaries andcompositions. Id turned fourteen and my fountain pen wasenjoying the last year of its life with me when . . .It was just after five on Friday afternoon. I came out ofmy room and was about to sit down at the table to write whenI was roughly pushed to one side to make room for Margot andFather, who wanted to practice their Latin. The fountain penremained unused on the table, while its owner, sighing, wasforced to make do with a very tiny corner of the table, whereshe began rubbing beans. Thats how we remove mold from thebeans and restore them to their original state. At a quarterto six I swept the floor, dumped the dirt into a news paper,along with the rotten beans, and tossed it into the stove. Agiant flame shot up, and I thought it was wonderful that thestove, which had been gasping its last breath, had made sucha miraculous recovery.All was quiet again. The Latin students had left, and I
130. sat down at the table to pick up where Id left off. But nomatter where I looked, my fountain pen was nowhere in sight.I took another look. Margot looked, Mother looked, Fatherlooked, Dussel looked. But it had vanished."Maybe it fell in the stove, along with the beans!" Margotsuggested."No, it couldnt have!" I replied.But that evening, when my fountain pen still hadnt turnedup, we all assumed it had been burned, especially becausecelluloid is highly inflammable. Our darkest fears wereconfirmed the next day when Father went to empty the stoveand discovered the clip, used to fasten it to a pocket, amongthe ashes. Not a trace of the gold nib was left. "It musthave melted into stone," Father conjectured.Im left with one consolation, small though it may be: myfountain pen was cremated, just as I would like to besomeday!Yours, AnneWEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 17, 1943Dearest Kitty,Recent events have the house rocking on its foundations.Owing to an outbreak of diphtheria at Beps, she wont beallowed to come in contact with us for six weeks. Withouther, the cooking and shopping will be very difficult, not tomention how much well miss her company. Mr. Kleiman is stillin bed and has eaten nothing but gruel for three weeks. Mr.Kugler is up to his neck in work.Margot sends her Latin lessons to a teacher, who correctsand then returns them. Shes registered under Beps name. Theteachers very nice, and witty too. I bet hes glad to havesuch a smart student.Dussel is in a turmoil and we dont know why. It all beganwith Dussels saying nothing when he was upstairs; he didntexchange so much as a word with either Mr. or Mrs. van Daan.
131. We all noticed it. This went on for a few days, and thenMother took the opportunity to warn him about Mrs. van D.,who could make life miserable for him. Dussel said Mr. vanDaan had started the silent treatment and he had no intentionof breaking it. I should explain that yesterday was November16, the first anniversary of his living in the Annex. Motherreceived a plant in honor of the occasion, but Mrs. van Daan,who had alluded to the date for weeks and made no bones aboutthe fact that she thought Dussel should treat us to dinner,received nothing. Instead of making use of the opportunity tothank us -- for the first time -- for unselfishly taking himin, he didnt utter a word. And on the morning of thesixteenth, when I asked him whether I should offer him mycongratulations or my condolences, he replied that either onewould do. Mother, having cast herself in the role ofpeacemaker, made no headway whatsoever, and the situationfinally ended in a draw.I can say without exaggeration that Dussel has definitelygot a screw loose. We often laugh to ourselves because he hasno memory, no fixed opinions and no common sense. Hes amusedus more than once by trying to pass on the news hes justheard, since the message invariably gets garbled intransmission. Furthermore, he answers every reproach oraccusation with a load of fine 1 promises, which he nevermanages to keep."Der Mann hat einen grossen GeistUna ist so klein van Taten!"*[*A well-known expression:"The spirit of the man is great,How puny are his deeds."Yours, AnneSATURDAY, NOVEMBER 27, 1943Dearest Kitty,Last night, just as I was falling asleep, Hanneli suddenlyappeared before me.I saw her there, dressed in rags, her face thin and worn.She looked at me with such sadness and reproach in her
132. enormous eyes that I could read the message in them: "Oh,Anne, why have you deserted me? Help me, help me, rescue mefrom this hell!"And I cant help her. I can only stand by and watch whileother people suffer and die. All I can do is pray to God tobring her back to us. I saw Hanneli, and no one else, and Iunderstood why. I misjudged her, wasnt mature enough tounderstand how difficult it was for her. She was devoted toher girlfriend, and it must have seemed as though I weretrying to take her away. The poor thing, she must have feltawful! I know, because I recognize the feeling in myself! Ihad an occasional flash of understanding, but then gotselfishly wrapped up again in my own problems and pleasures.It was mean of me to treat her that way, and now she waslooking at me, oh so helplessly, with her pale face andbeseeching eyes. If only I could help her! Dear God, I haveeverything I could wish for, while fate has her in its deadlyclutches. She was as devout as I am, maybe even more so, andshe too wanted to do what was right. But then why have I beenchosen to live, while shes probably going to die? Whats thedifference between us? Why are we now so far apart?To be honest, I hadnt thought of her for months -- no,for at least a year. I hadnt forgotten her entirely, and yetit wasnt until I saw her before me that I thought of all hersuffering.Oh, Hanneli, I hope that if you live to the end of the warand return to us, Ill be able to take you in and make up forthe wrong Ive done you.But even if I were ever in a position to help, shewouldnt need it more than she does now. I wonder if she everthinks of me, and what shes feeling?Merciful God, comfort her, so that at least she wont bealone. Oh, if only You could tell her Im thinking of herwith compassion and love, it might help her go on.Ive got to stop dwelling on this. It wont get meanywhere. I keep seeing her enormous eyes, and they haunt me.Does Hanneli really and truly believe in God, or has religion
133. merely been foisted upon her? I dont even know that. I nevertook the trouble to ask.Hanneli, Hanneli, if only I could take you away, if only Icould share everything I have with you. Its too late. Icant help, or undo the wrong Ive done. But Ill neverforget her again and Ill always pray for her!Yours, AnneMONDAY, DECEMBER 6, 1943Dearest Kitty,The closer it got to St. Nicholas Day, the more we allthought back to last years festively decorated basket.More than anyone, I thought it would be terrible to skip acelebration this year. After long deliberation, I finallycame up with an idea, something funny. I consulted rim, and aweek ago we set to work writing a verse for each person.Sunday evening at a quarter to eight we trooped upstairscarrying the big laundry basket, which had been decoratedwith cutouts and bows made of pink and blue carbon paper. Ontop was a large piece of brown wrapping paper with a noteattached. Everyone was rather amazed at the sheer size of thegift. I removed the note and read it aloud:"Once again St. Nicholas DayHas even come to our hideaway;It wont be quite as Jun, I fear,As the happy day we had last year.Then we were hopeful, no reason to doubtThat optimism would win the bout,And by the time this year came round,Wed all be free, and s* and sound.Still, lets not Jorget its St. Nicholas Day,Though weve nothing left to give away.Well have to find something else to do:So everyone please look in their shoe!"As each person took their own shoe out of the basket,there was a roar of laughter. Inside each shoe was a little
134. wrapped package addressed to its owner.Yours, AnneDearest Kitty,A bad case of flu has prevented me from writing to youuntil today. Being sick here is dreadful. With every cough, Ihad to duck under the blanket -- once, twice, three times --and try to keep from coughing anymore.Most of the time the tickle refused to go away, so I hadto drink milk with honey, sugar or cough drops. I get dizzyjust thinking about all the cures Ive been subjected to:sweating out the fever, steam treatment, wet compresses, drycompresses, hot drinks, swabbing my throat, lying still,heating pad, hot-water bottles, lemonade and, every twohours, the thermometer. Will these remedies really make youbetter? The worst part was when Mr. Dussel decided to playdoctor and lay his pomaded head on my bare chest to listen tothe sounds. Not only did his hair tickle, but I wasembarrassed, even though he went to school thirty years agoand does have some kind of medical degree. Why should he layhis head on my heart? After all, hes not my boyfriend! Forthat matter, he wouldnt be able to tell a healthy sound froman unhealthy one.Hed have to have his ears cleaned first, since hesbecoming alarmingly hard of hearing. But enough about myillness. Im fit as a fiddle again. Ive grown almost half aninch and gained two pounds. Im pale, but itching to get backto my books.Ausnahmsweise* (the only word that will do here [* By wayof exception]), were all getting on well together. Nosquabbles, though that probably wont last long. There hasntbeen such peace and quiet in this house for at least sixmonths.Bep is still in isolation, but any day now her sister willno longer be contagious.For Christmas, were getting extra cooking oil, candy andmolasses. For Hanukkah, Mr. Dussel gave Mrs. van Daan and
135. Mother a beautiful cake, which hed asked Miep to bake. Ontop of all the work she has to do! Margot and I received abrooch made out of a penny, all bright and shiny. I cantreally describe it, but its lovely.I also have a Christmas present for Miep and Bep. For awhole month Ive saved up the sugar I put on my hot cereal,and Mr. Kleiman has used it to have fondant made.The weather is drizzly and overcast, the stove stinks, andthe food lies heavily on our stomachs, producing a variety ofrumbles.The war is at an impasse, spirits are low.Yours, AnneFRIDAY, DECEMBER 24, 1943Dear Kitty,As Ive written you many times before, moods have atendency to affect us quite a bit here, and in my case itsbeen getting worse lately. "Himmelhoch jauchzend, zu Todebetrubt"* [* A famous line from Goethe: "On top of theworld, or in the depths of despair."] certainly applies tome. Im "on top of the world" when I think of how fortunatewe are and compare myself to other Jewish children, and "inthe depths of despair" when, for example, Mrs. Kleiman comesby and talks about Jopies hockey club, canoe trips, schoolplays and afternoon teas with friends.I dont think Im jealous of Jopie, but I long to have areally good time for once and to laugh so hard it hurts.Were stuck in this house like lepers, especially duringwinter and the Christmas and New Years holidays. Actually, Ishouldnt even be writing this, since it makes me seem soungrateful, but I cant keep everything to myself, so Illrepeat what I said at the beginning: "Paper is more patientthan people."Whenever someone comes in from outside, with the wind intheir clothes and the cold on their cheeks, I feel like
136. burying my head under the blankets to keep from thinking,"When will we be allowed to breathe fresh air again?" I cantdo that -- on the contrary, I have to hold my head up highand put a bold face on things, but the thoughts keep cominganyway. Not just once, but over and over.Believe me, if youve been shut up for a year and a half,it can get to be too much for you sometimes. But feelingscant be ignored, no matter how unjust or ungrateful theyseem. I long to ride a bike, dance, whistle, look at theworld, feel young and know that Im free, and yet I cant letit show. just imagine what would happen if all eight of uswere to feel sorry for ourselves or walk around with thediscontent clearly visible on our faces. Where would that getus? I sometimes wonder if anyone will ever understand what Imean, if anyone will ever overlook my ingratitude and notworry about whether or not Im Jewish and merely see me as ateenager badly in need of some good plain fun. I dont know,and I wouldnt be able to talk about it with anyone, sinceIm sure Id start to cry. Crying can bring relief, as longas you dont cry alone. Despite all my theories and efforts,I miss -- every day and every hour of the day -- having amother who understands me. Thats why with everything I doand write, I imagine the kind of mom Id like to be to mychildren later on. The kind of mom who doesnt takeeverything people say too seriously, but who does take meseriously. I find it difficult to describe what I mean, butthe word mom" says it all. Do you know what Ive come upwith? In order to give me the feeling of calling my mothersomething that sounds like "Mom," I often call her" Momsy."Sometimes I shorten it to "Moms"; an imperfect "Mom." I wishI could honor her by removing the "s." Its a good thing shedoesnt realize this, since it would only make her unhappy.Well, thats enough of that. My writing has raised mesomewhat from "the depths of despair."Yours, AnneIts the day after Christmas, and I cant help thinkingabout Pim and the story he told me this time last year. Ididnt understand the meaning of his words then as well as Ido now. If only hed bring it up again, I might be able toshow him I understood what he meant!
137. I think Pim told me because he, who knows the "intimatesecrets" of so many others, needed to express his ownfeelings for once; Pim never talks about himself, and I dontthink Margot has any inkling of what hes been through. PoorPim, he cant fool me into thinking hes forgotten that girl.He never will. Its made him very accommodating, since hesnot blind to Mothers faults. I hope Im going to be a littlelike him, without having to go through what he has!AnneMONDAY, DECEMBER 27, 1943Friday evening, for the first time in my life, I receiveda Christmas present. Mr. Kleiman, Mr. Kugler and the girlshad prepared a wonderful surprise for us. Miep made adelicious Christmas cake with "Peace 1944" written on top,and Bep provided a batch of cookies that was up to prewarstandards.There was a jar of yogurt for Peter, Margot and me, and abottle of beer for each of the adults. And once againeverything was wrapped so nicely, with pretty pictures gluedto the packages. For the rest, the holidays passed by quicklyfor us.AnneWEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 29, 1943I was very sad again last night. Grandma and Hanneli cameto me once more. Grandma, oh, my sweet Grandma. How little weunderstood what she suffered, how kind she always was andwhat an interest she took in everything that concerned us.And to think that all that time she was carefully guardingher terrible secret. * [*Annes grandmother was terminallyill.]Grandma was always so loyal and good. She would never havelet any of us down. Whatever happened, no matter how much Imisbehaved, Grandma always stuck up for me. Grandma, did youlove me, or did you not understand me either? I dont know.How lonely Grandma must have been, in spite of us. You can be
138. lonely even when youre loved by many people, since yourestill not bd"dI" any 0 y s one an only.And Hanneli? Is she still alive? Whats she doing? DearGod, watch over her and bring her back to us. Hanneli, yourea reminder of what my fate might have been. I keep seeingmyself in your place. So why am I often miserable about whatgoes on here? Shouldnt I be happy, contented and glad,except when Im thinking of Hanneli and those suffering alongwith her? Im selfish and cowardly. Why do I always think anddream the most awful things and want to scream in terror?Because, in spite of everything, I still dont have enoughfaith in God. Hes given me so much, which I dont deserve,and yet each day I make so many mistakes!Thinking about the suffering of those you hold dear canreduce you to tears; in fact, you could spend the whole daycrying. The most you can do is pray for God to perform amiracle and save at least some of them. And I hope Im doingenough of that!AnneTHURSDAY, DECEMBER 30, 1943Dearest Kitty,Since the last raging quarrels, things have settled downhere, not only between ourselves, Dussel and "upstairs," butalso between Mr. and Mrs. van D. Nevertheless, a few darkthunderclouds are heading this way, and all because of . . .food. Mrs. van D. came up with the ridiculous idea of fryingfewer potatoes in the morning and saving them for later inthe day. Mother and Dussel and the rest of us didnt agreewith her, so now were dividing up the potatoes as well. Itseems the fats and oils arent being doled out fairly, andMothers going to have to put a stop to it. Ill let you knowif there are any interesting developments. For the last fewmonths now weve been splitting up the meat (theirs with fat,ours without), the soup (they eat it, we dont), the potatoes(theirs peeled, ours not), the extras and now the friedpotatoes too.If only we could split up completely!
139. Yours, AnneP.S. Bep had a picture postcard of the entire Royal Familycopied for me. Juliana looks very young, and so does theQueen. The three little girls are adorable. It was incrediblynice of Bep, dont you think?SUNDAY, JANUARY 2, 1944Dearest Kitty,This morning, when I had nothing to do, I leafed throughthe pages of my diary and came across so many letters dealingwith the subject of "Mother" in such strong terms that I wasshocked. I said to myself, "Anne, is that really you talkingabout hate? Oh, Anne, how could you?"I continued to sit with the open book in my hand andwonder why I was filled with so much anger and hate that Ihad to confide it all to you. I tried to understand the Anneof last year and make apologies for her, because as long as Ileave you with these accusations and dont attempt to explainwhat prompted them, my conscience wont be clear. I wassuffering then (and still do) from moods that kept my headunder water (figuratively speaking) and allowed me to seethings only from my own perspective, without calmlyconsidering what the others -- those whom I, with mymercurial temperament, had hurt or offended -- had said, andthen acting as they would have done.I hid inside myself, thought of no one but myself andcalmly wrote down all my joy, sarcasm and sorrow in my diary.Because this diary has become a kind of memory book, it meansa great deal to me, but I could easily write "over and donewith" on many of its pages.I was furious at Mother (and still am a lot of the time).Its true, she didnt understand me, but I didnt understandher either. Because she loved me, she was tender andaffectionate, but because of the difficult situations I puther in, and the sad circumstances in which she found herself,she was nervous and irritable, so I can understand why shewas often short with me.
140. I was offended, took it far too much to heart and wasinsolent and beastly to her, which, in turn, made herunhappy. We were caught in a vicious circle of unpleasantnessand sorrow. Not a very happy period for either of us, but atleast its coming to an end. I didnt want to see what wasgoing on, and I felt very sorry for myself, but thatsunderstandable too.Those violent outbursts on paper are simply expressions ofanger that, in normal life, I could have worked off bylocking myself in my room and stamping my foot a few times orcalling Mother names behind her back.The period of tearfully passing judgment on Mother isover. Ive grown wiser and Mothers nerves are a bitsteadier. Most of the time I manage to hold my tongue whenIm annoyed, and she does too; so on the surface, we seem tobe getting along better. But theres one thing I cant do,and thats to love Mother with the devotion of a child.I soothe my conscience with the thought that its betterfor unkind words to be down on paper than for Mother to haveto carry them around in her heart.Yours, AnneTHURSDAY, JANUARY 6, 1944Dearest Kitty,Today I have two things to confess. Its going to take along time, but I have to tell them to someone, and youre themost likely candidate, since I know youll keep a secret, nomatter what happens.The first is about Mother. As you know, Ive frequentlycomplained about her and then tried my best to be nice. Ivesuddenly realized whats wrong with her. Mother has said thatshe sees us more as friends than as daughters. Thats allvery nice, of course, except that a friend cant take theplace of a mother. I need my mother to set a good example andbe a person I can respect, but in most matters shes anexample of what not to do. I have the feeling that Margot
141. thinks so differently about these things that shed never beable to understand what Ive just told you. And Father avoidsall conversations having to do with Mother.I imagine a mother as a woman who, first and foremost,possesses a great deal of tact, especially toward heradolescent children, and not one who, like Momsy, pokes funat me when I cry. Not because Im in pain, but because ofother things.This may seem trivial, but theres one incident Ive neverforgiven her for. It happened one day when I had to go to thedentist. Mother and Margot planned to go with me and agreed Ishould take my bicycle. When the dentist was finished and wewere back outside, Margot and Mother very sweetly informed methat they were going downtown to buy or look at something, Idont remember what, and of course I wanted to go along. Butthey said I couldnt come because I had my bike with me.Tears of rage rushed to my eyes, and Margot and Mother beganlaughing at me. I was so furious that I stuck my tongue outat them, right there on the street. A little old ladyhappened to be passing by, and she looked terribly shocked. Irode my bike home and must have cried for hours. Strangelyenough, even though Mother has wounded me thousands of times,this particular wound still stings whenever I think of howangry I was.I find it difficult to confess the second one because itsabout myself. Im not prudish, Kitty, and yet every time theygive a blow-by-blow account of their trips to the bathroom,which they often do, my whole body rises in revolt.Yesterday I read an article on blushing by Sis Heyster. Itwas as if shed addressed it directly to me. Not that I blusheasily, but the rest of the article did apply. What shebasically says is that during puberty girls withdraw intothemselves and begin thinking about the wondrous changestaking place in their bodies. I feel that too, which probablyaccounts for my recent embarrassment over Margot, Mother andFather. On the other hand, Margot is a lot shyer than I am,and yet shes not in the least embarrassed.I think that whats happening to me is so wonderful, and Idont just mean the changes taking place on the outside of my
142. body, but also those on the inside. I never discuss myself orany of these things with others, which is why I have to talkabout them to myself. Whenever I get my period (and thatsonly been three times), I have the feeling that in spite ofall the pain, discomfort and mess, Im carrying around asweet secret. So even though its a nuisance, in a certainway Im always looking forward to the time when Ill feelthat secret inside me once again.Sis Heyster also writes that girls my age feel veryinsecure about themselves and are just beginning to discoverthat theyre individuals with their own ideas, thoughts andhabits. Id just turned thirteen when I came here, so Istarted thinking about myself and realized that Ive becomean "independent person" sooner than most girls. Sometimeswhen I lie in bed at night I feel a terrible urge to touch mybreasts and listen to the quiet, steady beating of my heart.Unconsciously, I had these feelings even before I camehere. Once when I was spending the night at Jacques, I couldno longer restrain my curiosity about her body, which shedalways hidden from me and which Id never seen. I asked herwhether, as proof of our friendiship, we could touch eachothers breasts. Jacque refused.I also had a terrible desire to kiss her, which I did.Every time I see a female nude, such as the Venus in my arthistory book, I go into ecstasy. Sometimes I find them soexquisite I have to struggle to hold back my tears. If only Ihad a girlfriend!THURSDAY, JANUARY 6, 1944Dearest Kitty,My longing for someone to talk to has become so unbearablethat I somehow took it into my head to select Peter for thisrole. On the few occasions when I have gone to Peters roomduring the day, Ive always thought it was nice and cozy. ButPeters too polite to show someone the door when theyrebothering him, so Ive never dared to stay long. Ive alwaysbeen afraid hed think I was a pest. Ive been looking for anexcuse to linger in his room and get him talking without hisnoticing, and yesterday I got my chance. Peter, you see, is
143. currently going through a crossword-puzzle craze, and hedoesnt do anything else all day. I was helping him, and wesoon wound up sitting across from each other at his table,Peter on the chair and me on the divan.It gave me a wonderful feeling when I looked into his darkblue eyes and saw how bashful my unexpected visit had madehim. I could read his innermost thoughts, and in his face Isaw a look of helplessness and uncertainty as to how tobehave, and at the same time a flicker of awareness of hismasculinity. I saw his shyness, and I melted. I wanted tosay, "Tell me about yourself. Look beneath my chattyexterior." But I found that it was easier to think upquestions than to ask them.The evening came to a close, and nothing happened, exceptthat I told him about the article on blushing. Not what Iwrote you, of course, just that he would grow more secure ashe got older. "That night I lay in bed and cried my eyes out, all the iwhile making sure no one could hear me. The idea that I hadto beg Peter for favors was simply revolting. But people willdo almost anything to satisfy their longings; take me, forexample, Ive made up my mind to visit Peter more often and,somehow, get him to talk to me.You mustnt think Im in love with Peter, because Im not.If the van Daans had had a daughter instead of a son, Idhave tried to make friends with her.This morning I woke up just before seven and immediatelyremembered what Id been dreaming about. I was sitting on achair and across from me was Peter. . . Peter Schiff. We werelooking at a book of drawings by Mary Bos. The dream was sovivid I can even remember some of the drawings. But thatwasnt all -- the dream went on. Peters eyes suddenly metmine, and I stared for a long time into those velvety browneyes. Then he said very softly, "If Id only known, Id havecome to you long ago!" I turned abruptly away, overcome byemotion. And then I felt a soft, oh-so-cool and gentle cheekagainst mine, and it felt so good, so good . . .At that point I woke up, still feeling his cheek against
144. mine and his brown eyes staring deep into my heart, so deepthat he could read how much Id loved him and how much Istill do. Again my eyes filled with tears, and I was sadbecause Id lost him once more, and yet at the same time gladbecause I knew with certainty that Peter is still the onlyone for me. Its funny, but I often have such vivid images in mydreams. One night I saw Grammy* [*Grammy is Annesgrandmother on her fathers side, and Grandma her grandmotheron her mothers side.] so clearly that I could even make outher skin of soft, crinkly velvet. Another time Grandmaappeared to me as a guardian angel. After that it wasHanneli, who still symbolizes to me the suffering of myfriends as well as that of Jews in general, so that when Impraying for her, Im also praying for all the Jews and allthose in need.And now Peter, my dearest Peter. Ive never had such aclear mental image of him. I dont need a photograph, I cansee him oh so well.Yours, AnneFRIDAY, ]ANUARY 7, 1944Dearest Kitty,Im such an idiot. I forgot that I havent yet told youthe story of my one true love.When I was a little girl, way back in kindergarten, I tooka liking to Sally Kimmel. His father was gone, and he and hismother lived with an aunt. One of Sallys cousins was agood-looking, slender, dark-haired boy named Appy, who laterturned out to look like a movie idol and aroused moreadmiration than the short, comical, chubby Sally. For a longtime we went everywhere together, but aside from that, mylove was unrequited until Peter crossed my path. I had anout-and-out crush on him. He liked me too, and we wereinseparable for one whole summer. I can still see us walkinghand in hand through our neighborhood, Peter in a whitecotton suit and me in a short summer dress. At the end of thesummer vacation he went to the seventh grade at the middle
145. school, while I was in the sixth grade at the grammar school.Hed pick me up on the way home, or Id pick him up. Peterwas the ideal boy: tall, good-looking and slender, with aserious, quiet and intelligent face. He had dark hair,beautiful brown eyes, ruddy cheeks and a nicely pointed nose.I was crazy about his smile, which made him look so boyishand mischievous.Id gone away to the countryside during summer vacation,and when I came back, Peter was no longer at his old address;hed moved and was living with a much older boy, whoapparently told him I was just a kid, because Peter stoppedseeing me. I loved him so much that I didnt want to face thetruth. I kept clinging to him until the day I finallyrealized that if I continued to chase after him, people wouldsay I was boy-crazy.The years went by. Peter hung around with girls his ownage and no longer bothered to say hello to me. I startedschool at the Jewish Lyceum, and several boys in my classwere in love with me. I enjoyed it and felt honored by theirattentions, but that was all. Later on, Hello had a terriblecrush on me, but as Ive already told you, I never fell inlove again.Theres a saying: "Time heals all wounds." Thats how itwas with me. I told myself Id forgotten Peter and no longerliked him in the least. But my memories of him were so strongthat I had to admit to myself that the only reason I nolonger liked him was that I was jealous of the other girls.This morning I realized that nothing has changed; on thecontrary, as Ive grown older and more mature, my love hasgrown along with me. I can understand now that Peter thoughtI was childish, and yet it still hurts to think hedforgotten me completely. I saw his face so clearly; I knewfor certain that no one but Peter could have stuck in my mindthat way.Ive been in an utter state of confusion today. WhenFather kissed me this morning, I wanted to shout, "Oh, ifonly you were Peter!" Ive been thinking of him constantly,and all day long Ive been repeating to myself, "Oh, Petel,my darling, darling Petel . . ."
146. Where can I find help? I simply have to go on living andpraying to God that, if we ever get out of here, Peters pathwill cross mine and hell gaze into my eyes, read the love inthem and say, "Oh, Anne, if Id only known, Id have come toyou long ago."Once when Father and I were talking about sex, he said Iwas too young to understand that kind of desire. But Ithought I did understand it, and now Im sure I do. Nothingis as dear to me now as my darling Petel!I saw my face in the mirror, and it looked so different.My eyes were clear and deep, my cheeks were rosy, which theyhadnt been in weeks, my mouth was much softer. I lookedhappy, and yet there was something so sad in my expressionthat the smile immediately faded from my lips. Im not happy,since I know Petels not thinking of me, and yet I can stillfeel his beautiful eyes gazing at me and his cool, soft cheekagainst mine. . . Oh, Petel, Petel, how am I ever going tofree myself from your image? Wouldnt anyone who took yourplace be a poor substitute? I love you, with a love so greatthat it simply couldnt keep growing inside my heart, but hadto leap out and reveal itself in all its magnitude.A week ago, even a day ago, if youd asked me, "Which ofyour friends do you think youd be most likely to marry?" Idhave answered, "Sally, since he makes me feel good, peacefuland safe!" But now Id cry, "Petel, because I love him withall my heart and all my soul. I surrender myself completely!"Except for that one thing: he may touch my face, but thatsas far as it goes.This morning I imagined I was in the front attic withPetel, sitting on the floor by the windows, and after talkingfor a while, we both began to cry. Moments later I felt hismouth and his wonderful cheek! Oh, Petel, come to me. Thinkof me, my dearest Petel!WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 12, 1944Dearest Kitty,Beps been back for the last two weeks, though her sisterwont be allowed back at school until next week. Bep herself
147. spent two days in bed with a bad cold. Miep and Jan were alsoout for two days, with upset stomachs.Im currently going through a dance and ballet craze andam diligently practicing my dance steps every evening. Ivemade an ultramodern dance costume out of a lacy lavender slipbelonging to Momsy. Bias tape is threaded through the top andtied just above the bust. A pink corded ribbon completes theensemble. I tried to turn my tennis shoes into balletslippers, but with no success. My stiff limbs are well on theway to becoming as limber as they used to be. A terrificexercise is to sit on the floor, place a heel in each handand raise both legs in the air. I have to sit on a cushion,because otherwise my poor backside really takes a beating.Everyone here is reading a book called A CloudlessMorning. Mother thought it was extremely good because itdescribes a number of adolescent problems. I thought tomyself, a bit ironically, "Why dont you take more interestin your own adolescents first!"I think Mother believes that Margot and I have a betterrelationship with our parents than anyone in the whole wideworld, and that no mother is more involved in the lives ofher children than she is. She must have my sister in mind,since I dont believe Margot has the same problems andthoughts as I do. Far be it from me to point out to Motherthat one of her daughters is not at all what she imagines.Shed be completely bewildered, and anyway, shed never beable to change; Id like to spare her that grief, especiallysince I know that everything would remain the same. Motherdoes sense that Margot loves her much more than I do, but shethinks Im just going through a phase.Margots gotten much nicer. She seems a lot different thanshe used to be. Shes not nearly as catty these days and isbecoming a real friend. She no longer thinks of me as a litdekid who doesnt count.Its funny, but I can sometimes see myself as others seeme. I take a leisurely look at the person called "Anne Frank"and browse through the pages of her life as though she were astranger.
148. Before I came here, when I didnt think about things asmuch as I do now, I occasionally had the feeling that Ididnt belong to Momsy, Pim and Margot and that I wouldalways be an outsider. I sometimes went around for six monthsat a time pretending I was an orphan. Then Id chastisemyself for playing the victim, when really, Id always beenso fortunate. After that Id force myself to be friendly fora while. Every morning when I heard footsteps on the stairs,I hoped it would be Mother coming to say good morning. Idgreet her warmly, because I honesly did look forward to heraffectionate glance. But then shed snap at me for havingmade some comment or other (and Id go off to school feelingcompletely discouraged.On the way home Id make excuses for her, telling myselfthat she had so many worries. Id arrive home in highspirits, chatting nineteen to the dozen, until the events ofthe morning would repeat themselves and Id leave the roomwith my schoolbag in my hand and a pensive look on my face.Sometimes Id decide to stay angry, but then I always had somuch to talk about after school that Id forget my resolutionand want Mother to stop whatever she was doing and lend awilling ear. Then the time would come once more when I nolonger listened for the steps on the stairs and felt lonelyand cried into my pillow every night.Everything has gotten much worse here. But you alreadyknew that. Now God has sent someone to help me: Peter. Ifondle my pendant, press it to my lips and think, "What do Icare! Petel is mine and nobody knows it!" With this in mind,I can rise above every nasty remark. Which of the people herewould suspect that so much is going on in the mind of ateenage girl?SATURDAY, JANUARY 15, 1944My dearest Kitty,Theres no reason for me to go on describing all ourquarrels and arguments down to the last detail. Its enoughto tell you that weve divided many things like meat and fatsand oils and are frying our own potatoes. Recently weve beeneating a little extra rye bread because by four oclock wereso hungry for dinner we can barely control our rumbling
149. stomachs.Mothers birthday is rapidly approaching. She receivedsome extra sugar from Mr. Kugler, which sparked off jealousyon the part of the van Daans, because Mrs. van D. didntreceive any on her birthday. But whats the point of boringyou with harsh words, spiteful conversations and tears whenyou know they bore us even more?Mother has expressed a wish, which isnt likely to cometrue any time soon: not to have to see Mr. van Daans facefor two whole weeks. I wonder if everyone who shares a housesooner or later ends up at odds with their fellow residents.Or have we just had a stroke of bad luck? At mealtime, whenDussel helps himself to a quarter of the half-filled gravyboat and leaves the rest of us to do without, I lose myappetite and feel like jumping to my feet, knocking him offhis chair and throwing him out the door.Are most people so stingy and selfish? Ive gained someinsight into human nature since I came here, which is good,but Ive had enough for the present. Peter says the same.The war is going to go on despite our quarrels and ourlonging for freedom and fresh air, so we should try to makethe best of our stay here.Im preaching, but I also believe that if I live here muchlonger, Ill turn into a dried-up old beanstalk. And all Ireally want is to be an honest-to-goodness teenager!Yours, AnneWEDNESDAY EVENING, JANUARY 19, 1944Dearest Kitty,I (there I go again!) dont know whats happened, butsince my dream I keep noticing how Ive changed. By the way,I dreamed about Peter again last night and once again I felthis eyes penetrate mine, but this dream was less vivid andnot quite as beautiful as the last.You know that I always used to be jealous of Margots
150. relationship with Father. Theres not a trace of my jealousyleft now; I still feel hurt when Fathers nerves cause him tobe unreasonable toward me, but then I think, "I cant blameyou for being the way you are. You talk so much about theminds of children and adolescents, but you dont know thefirst thing about them!" I long for more than Fathersaffection, more than his hugs and kisses. Isnt it awful ofme to be so preoccupied with myself? Shouldnt I, who want tobe good and kind, forgive them first? I forgive Mother too,but every time she makes a sarcastic remark or laughs at me,its all I can do to control myself.I know Im far from being what I should; will I ever be?Anne FrankP.S. Father asked if I told you about the cake. ForMothers birthday, she received a real mocha cake, prewarquality, from the office. It was a really nice day! But atthe moment theres no room in my head for things like that.SATURDAY, JANUARY 22, 1944Dearest Kitty,Can you tell me why people go to such lengths to hidetheir real selves? Or why I always behave very differentlywhen Im in the company of others? Why do people have solittle trust in one another? I know there must be a reason,but sometimes I think its horrible that you cant everconfide in anyone, not even those closest to you.It seems as if Ive grown up since the night I had thatdream, as if Ive become more independent. Youll be amazedwhen I tell you that even my attitude toward the van Daanshas changed. Ive stopped looking at all the discussions andarguments from my familys biased point of view. Whatsbrought on such a radical change? Well, you see, I suddenlyrealized that if Mother had been different, if shed been areal mom, our relationship would have been very, verydifferent. Mrs. van Daan is by no means a wonderful person,yet half the arguments could have been avoided if Motherhadnt been so hard to deal with every time they got onto atricky subject. Mrs. van Daan does have one good point,
151. though: you can talk to her. She may be selfish, stingy andunderhanded, but shell readily back down as long as youdont provoke her and make her unreasonable. This tacticdoesnt work every time, but if youre patient, you can keeptrying and see how far you get.All the conflicts about our upbringing, about notpampering children, about the food -- about everything,absolutely everything -- might have taken a different turn ifwed remained open and on friendly terms instead of alwaysseeing the worst side.I know exactly what youre going to say, Kitty."But, Anne, are these words really coming from your lips?From you, who have had to put up with so many unkind wordsfrom upstairs? From you, who are aware of all theinjustices?"And yet they are coming from me. I want to take a freshlook at things and form my own opinion, not just ape myparents, as in the proverb "The apple never falls far fromthe tree." I want to reexamine the van Daans and decide formyself whats true and whats been blown out of proportion.If I wind up being disappointed in them, I can always sidewith Father and Mother. But if not, I can try to change theirattitude. And if that doesnt work, Ill have to stick withmy own opinions and judgment. Ill take every opportunity tospeak openly to Mrs. van D. about our many differences andnot be afraid -- despite my reputation as a smart aleck --to offer my impartial opinion. I wont say anything negativeabout my own family, though that doesnt mean I wont defendthem if somebody else does, and as of today, my gossiping isa thing of the past.Up to now I was absolutely convinced that the van Daanswere entirely to blame for the quarrels, but now Im sure thefault was largely ours. We were right as far as the subjectmatter was concerned, but intelligent people (such asourselves!) should have more insight into how to deal withothers.I hope Ive got at least a touch of that insight, and thatIll find an occasion to put it to good use.
152. Yours, AnneMONDAY, JANUARY 24, 1944Dearest Kitty,A very strange thing has happened to me. (Actually,"happened" isnt quite the right word.)Before I came here, whenever anyone at home or at schooltalked about sex, they were either secretive or disgusting.Any words having to do with sex were spoken in a low whisper,and kids who werent in the know were often laughed at. Thatstruck me as odd, and I often wondered why people were somysterious or obnoxious when they talked about this subject.But because I couldnt change things, I said as little aspossible or asked my girlfriends for information.After Id learned quite a lot, Mother once said to me,"Anne, let me give you some good advice. Never discuss thiswith boys, and if they bring it up, dont answer them."I still remember my exact reply. "No, of course not," Iexclaimed. "Imagine!" And nothing more was said.When we first went into hiding, Father often told me aboutthings Id rather have heard from Mother, and I learned therest from books or things I picked up in conversations.Peter van Daan wasnt ever as obnoxious about this subjectas the boys at school. Or maybe just once or twice, in thebeginning, though he wasnt trying to get me to talk. Mrs.van Daan once told us shed never discussed these matterswith Peter, and as far as she knew, neither had her husband.Apparently she didnt even know how much Peter knew or wherehe got his information.Yesterday, when Margot, Peter and I were peeling potatoes,the conversation somehow turned to Boche. "Were still notsure whether Boche is a boy or a girl, are we?" I asked.Yes we are, he answered. "Boche is a tomcat."
153. I began to laugh. "Some tomcat if hes pregnant."Peter and Margot joined in the laughter. You see, a monthor two ago Peter informed us that Boche was sure to havekittens before long, because her stomach was rapidlyswelling. However, Boches fat tummy turned out to be due toa bunch of stolen bones. No kittens were growing inside, muchless about to be born.Peter felt called upon to defend himself against myaccusation. "Come with me. You can see for yourself. I washorsing around with the cat one day, and I could definitelysee it was a he. "Unable to restrain my curiosity, I went with him to thewarehouse. Boche, however, wasnt receiving visitors at thathour, and was nowhere in sight. We waited for a while, butwhen it got cold, we went back upstairs.Later that afternoon I heard Peter go downstairs for thesecond time. I mustered the courage to walk through thesilent house by myself and reached the warehouse. Boche wason the packing table, playing with Peter, who was gettingready to put him on the scale and weigh him."Hi, do you want to have a look?" Without anypreliminaries, he picked up the cat, turned him over on hisback, deftly held his head and paws and began the lesson."This is the male sexual organ, these are a few stray hairs,and thats his backside."The cat flipped himself over and stood up on his littlewhite feet.If any other boy had pointed out the "male sexual organ"to me, I would never have given him a second glance. ButPeter went on talking in a normal voice about what isotherwise a very awkward subject. Nor did he have anyulterior motives. By the time hed finished, I felt so muchat ease that I started acting normally too. We played withBoche, had a good time, chatted a bit and finally saunteredthrough the long warehouse to the door. "Were you there whenMouschi was fixed?"
154. "Yeah, sure. It doesnt take long. They give the cat ananesthetic, of course.""Do they take something out?""No, the vet just snips the tube. Theres nothing to seeon the outside."I had to get up my nerve to ask a question, since itwasnt as "normal" as I thought. "Peter, the German wordGeschlechtsteil means sexual organ, doesnt it? But thenthe male and female ones have different names.""I know that.""The female one is a vagina, that I know, but I dont knowwhat its called in males.""Oh well," I said. "How are we supposed to know thesewords? Most of the time you just come across them byaccident.""Why wait? Ill ask my parents. They know more than I doand theyve had more experience."We were already on the stairs, so nothing more was said.Yes, it really did happen. Id never have talked to a girlabout this in such a normal tone of voice. Im also certainthat this isnt what Mother meant when she warned me aboutboys.All the same, I wasnt exactly my usual self for the restof the day. When I thought back to our talk, it struck me asodd. But Ive learned at least one thing: there are youngpeople, even those of the opposite sex, who can discuss thesethings naturally, without cracking jokes.Is Peter really going to ask his parents a lot ofquestions? Is he really the way he seemed yesterday?Oh, what do I know?!!!Yours, Anne
155. FRIDAY, JANUARY 28, 1944Dearest Kitty,In recent weeks Ive developed a great liking for familytrees and the genealogical tables of royal families. Ivecome to the conclusion that once you begin your search, youhave to keep digging deeper and deeper into the past, whichleads you to even more interesting discoveries.Although Im extremely diligent when it comes to myschoolwork and can pretty much follow the BBC Home Service onthe radio, I still spend many of my Sundays sorting out andlooking over my movie-star collection, which has grown to avery respectable size. Mr. Kugler makes me happy every Mondayby bringing me a copy of Cinema & Theater magazine. The lessworldly members of our household often refer to this smallindulgence as a waste of money, yet they never fail to besurprised at how accurately I can list the actors in anygiven movie, even after a year. Bep, who often goes to themovies with her boyfriend on her day off, tells me onSaturday the name of the show theyre going to see, and Ithen proceed to rattle off the names of the leading actorsand actresses and the reviews. Moms recently remarked ; thatI wouldnt need to go to the movies later on, because !I know all the plots, the names of the stars and thereviews by heart.Whenever I come sailing in with a new hairstyle, I I canread the disapproval on their faces, and I can be suresomeone will ask which movie star Im trying to imitate. Myreply, that its my own invention, is greeted with ~skepticism. As for the hairdo, it doesnt hold its set for ~more than half an hour. By that time Im so sick and tired iof their remarks that I race to the bathroom and restore myhair to its normal mass of curls.Yours, AnneFRIDAY, JANUARY 28, 1944
156. Dearest Kitty,This morning I was wondering whether you ever felt like acow, having to chew my stale news over and over again untilyoure so fed up with the monotonous fare that you yawn andsecretly wish Anne would dig up something new.Sorry, I know you find it dull as ditchwater, but imaginehow sick and tired I am of hearing the same old stuff. If thetalk at mealtime isnt about politics or good food, thenMother or Mrs. van D. trot out stories about their childhoodthat weve heard a thousand times before, or Dussel goes onand on about beautiful racehorses, his Charlottes extensivewardrobe, leaky rowboats, boys who can swim at the age offour, aching muscles and frightened patients. It all boilsdown to this: whenever one of the eight of us opens hismouth, the other seven can finish the story for him. We knowthe punch line of every joke before it gets told, so thatwhoevers telling it is left to laugh alone. The variousmilkmen, grocers and butchers of the two former housewiveshave been praised to the skies or run into the ground so manytimes that in our imaginations theyve grown as old asMethuselah; theres absolutely no chance of anything new orfresh being brought up for discussion in the Annex.Still, all this might be bearable if only the grown-upswerent in the habit of repeating the stories we hear fromMr. Kleiman, jan or Miep, each time embellishing them with afew details of their own, so that I often have to pinch myarm under the table to keep myself from setting theenthusiastic storyteller on the right track. Little children,such as Anne, must never, ever correct their elders, nomatter how many blunders they make or how often they lettheir imaginations run away with them.Jan and Mr. Kleiman love talking about people who havegone underground or into hiding; they know were eager tohear about others in our situation and that we trulysympathize with the sorrow of those whove been arrested aswell as the joy of prisoners whove been freed.Going underground or into hiding has become as routine asthe proverbial pipe and slippers that used to await the manof the house after a long day at work. There are many
157. resistance groups, such as Free Netherlands, that forgeidentity cards, provide financial support to those in hiding,organize hiding places and find work for young Christians whogo underground. Its amazing how much these generous andunselfish people do, risking their own lives to help and saveothers.The best example of this is our own helpers, who havemanaged to pull us through so far and will hopefully bring ussafely to shore, because otherwise theyll find themselvessharing the fate of those theyre trying to protect. Neverhave they uttered a single word about the burden we must be,never have they complained that were too much trouble. Theycome upstairs every day and talk to the men about businessand politics, to the women about food and wartimedifficulties and to the children about books and newspapers.They put on their most cheerful expressions, bring flowersand gifts for birthdays and holidays and are always ready todo what they can. Thats something we should never forget;while others display their heroism in battle or against theGermans, our helpers prove theirs every day by their goodspirits and affection.The most bizarre stories are making the rounds, yet mostof them are really true. For instance, Mr. Kleiman reportedthis week that a soccer match was held in the province ofGelderland; one team consisted entirely of men who had goneunderground, and the other of eleven Military Policemen. InHilversum, new registration cards were issued. In order forthe many people in hiding to get their rations (you have toshow this card to obtain your ration book or else pay 60guilders a book), the registrar asked all those hiding inthat district to pick up their cards at a specified hour,when the documents could be collected at a separate table.All the same, you have to be careful that stunts likethese dont reach the ears of the Germans.Yours, AnneSUNDAY, JANUARY 30, 1944My dearest Kit,
158. Another Sunday has rolled around; I dont mind them asmuch as I did in the beginning, but theyre boring enough.I still havent gone to the warehouse yet, but maybesometime soon. Last night I went downstairs in the dark, allby myself, after having been there with Father a few nightsbefore. I stood at the top of the stairs while German planesflew back and forth, and I knew I was on my own, that Icouldnt count on others for support. My fear vanished. Ilooked up at the sky and trusted in God.I have an intense need to be alone. Father has noticed Imnot my usual self, but I cant tell him whats bothering me.All I want to do is scream "Let me be, leave me alone!"Who knows, perhaps the day will come when Im left alonemore than Id like!Anne FrankTHURSDAY, FEBRUARY 3, 1944Dearest Kitty,Invasion fever is mounting daily throughout the country.If you were here, Im sure youd be as impressed as I am atthe many preparations, though youd no doubt laugh at all thefuss were making. Who knows, it may all be for nothing!The papers are full of invasion news and are drivingeveryone insane with such statements as: "In the event of aBritish landing in Holland, the Germans will do what they canto defend the country, even flooding it, if necessary."Theyve published maps of Holland with the potential floodareas marked. Since large portions of Amsterdam were shadedin, our first question was what we should do if the water inthe streets rose to above our waists. This tricky questionelicited a variety of responses:"Itll be impossible to walk or ride a bike, so well haveto wade through the water.""Dont be silly. Well have to try and swim. Well all puton our bathing suits and caps and swim underwater as much as
159. we can, so nobody can see were Jews.""Oh, baloney! I can just imagine the ladies swimming withthe rats biting their legs!" (That was a man, of course;well see who screams loudest!)"We wont even be able to leave the house. The warehouseis so unstable itll collapse if theres a flood.""Listen, everyone, all joking aside, we really ought totry and get a boat.""Why bother? I have a better idea. We can each take apacking crate from the attic and row with a wooden spoon.""Im going to walk on stilts. I used to be a whiz at itwhen I was young.""Jan Gies wont need to. Hell let his wife ridepiggyback, and then Miep will be on stilts."So now you have a rough idea of whats going on, dontyou, Kit? This lighthearted banter is all very amusing, butreality will prove otherwise. The second question about theinvasion was bound to arise: what should we do if the Germansevacuate Amsterdam?"Leave the city along with the others. Disguise ourselvesas well as we can.""Whatever happens, dont go outside! The best thing to dois to stay put! The Germans are capable of herding the entirepopulation of Holland into Germany, where theyll all die.""Of course well stay here. This is the safest place.Well try to talk Kleiman and his family into coming hereto live with us. Well somehow get hold of a bag of woodshavings, so we can sleep on the floor. Lets ask Miep andKleiman to bring some blankets, just in case. And well ordersome extra cereal grains to supplement the sixty-five poundswe already have. Jan can try to find some more beans. At themoment weve got about sixty-five pounds of beans and tenpounds of split peas. And dont forget the fifty cans of
160. vegetables.""What about the rest, Mother? Give us the latest figures.,"Ten cans of fish, forty cans of milk, twenty pounds ofpowdered milk, three bottles of oil, four crocks of butter,four jars of meat, two big jars of strawberries, two jars ofraspberries, twenty jars of tomatoes, ten pounds of oatmeal,nine pounds of rice. Thats it."Our provisions are holding out fairly well. All the same,we have to feed the office staff, which means dipping intoour stock every week, so its not as much as it seems. Wehave enough coal and firewood, candles too."Lets all make little moneybags to hide in our clothes sowe can take our money with us if we need to leave here.""We can make lists of what to take first in case we haveto run for it, and pack our knapsacks in advance.""When the time comes, well put two people on the lookout,one in the loft at the front of the house and one in theback.""Hey, whats the use of so much food if there isnt anywater, gas or electricity?""Well have to cook on the wood stove. Filter the waterand boil it. We should clean some big jugs and fill them withwater. We can also store water in the three kettles we usefor canning, and in the washtub.""Besides, we still have about two hundred and thirtypounds of winter potatoes in the spice storeroom."All day long thats all I hear. Invasion, invasion,nothing but invasion. Arguments about going hungry, dying,bombs, fire extinguishers, sleeping bags, identity cards,poison gas, etc., etc. Not exactly cheerful.A good example of the explicit warnings of the malecontingent is the following conversation with Jan:
161. Annex: "Were afraid that when the Germans retreat,theyll take the entire population with them."Jan: "Thats impossible. They havent got enough trains."Annex: "Trains? Do you really think theyd put civilianson trains? Absolutely not. Everyone would have to hoof it."(Or, as Dussel always says, per pedes apostolorum.)Jan: "I cant believe that. Youre always looking on thedark side. What reason would they have to round up all thecivilians and take them along?"Annex: "Dont you remember Goebbels saying that if theGermans have to go, theyll slam the doors to all theoccupied territories behind them?"Jan: "Theyve said a lot of things."Annex: "Do you think the Germans are too noble or humaneto do it? Their reasoning is: if we go under, well drageveryone else down with us."Jan: "You can say what you like, I just dont believeAnnex: "Its always the same old story. No one wants tosee the danger until its staring them in the face."Jan: "But you dont know anything for sure. Youre justmaking an assumption."Annex: "Because weve already been through it allourselves, First in Germany and then here. What do youthinks happening in Russia?"Jan: "You shouldnt include the Jews. I dont think anyoneknows whats going on in Russia. The British and the Russiansare probably exaggerating for propaganda purposes, just likethe Germans."Annex: "Absolutely not. The BBC has always told the truth.And even if the news is slightly exaggerated, the facts arebad enough as they are. You cant deny that millions of
162. peace-loving citizens in Poland and Russia have been murderedor gassed."Ill spare you the rest of our conversations. Im verycalm and take no notice of all the fuss. Ive reached thepoint where I hardly care whether I live or die. The worldwill keep on turning without me, and I cant do anything tochange events anyway. Ill just let matters take their courseand concentrate on studying and hope that everything will beall right in the end.Yours, AnneTUESDAY, FEBRUARY 8, 1944Dear Kitty,I cant tell you how I feel. One minute Im longing forpeace and quiet, and the next for a little fun. Weveforgotten how to laugh -- I mean, laughing so hard you can tstop.This morning I had "the giggles"; you know, the kind weused to have at school. Margot and I were giggling like realteenagers.Last night there was another scene with Mother. Margot wastucking her wool blanket around her when suddenly she leaptout of bed and carefully examined the blanket. What do youthink she found? A pin! Mother had patched the blanket andforgotten to take it out. Father shook his head meaningfullyand made a comment about how careless Mother is. Soonafterward Mother came in from the bathroom, and just to teaseher I said, "Du bist doch eine echte Rabenmutter." [Oh, youare cruel.]Of course, she asked me why Id said that, and we told herabout the pin shed overlooked. She immediately assumed herhaughtiest expression and said, "Youre a fine one to talk.When youre sewing, the entire floor is covered with pins.And look, youve left the manicure set lying around again.You never put that away either!"I said I hadnt used it, and Margot backed me up, since
163. she was the guilty party.Mother went on talking about how messy I was until I gotfed up and said, rather curtly, "I wasnt even the one whosaid you were careless. Im always getting blamed for otherpeoples mistakes!"Mother fell silent, and less than a minute later I wasobliged to kiss her good-night. This incident may not havebeen very important, but these days everything gets on mynerves.Anne Mary FrankSATURDAY, FEBRUARY 12, 1944Dearest Kitty,The sun is shining, the sky is deep blue, theres amagnificent breeze, and Im longing -- really longing -- foreverything: conversation, freedom, friends, being alone. Ilong. . . to cry! I feel as if I were about to explode. Iknow crying would help, but I cant cry. Im restless. I walkfrom one room to another, breathe through the crack in thewindow frame, feel my heart beating as if to say, "Fulfill mylonging at last. . ."I think spring is inside me. I feel spring awakening, Ifeel it in my entire body and soul. I have to force myself toact normally. Im in a state of utter confusion, dont knowwhat to read, what to write, what to do. I only know that Imlonging for something. . .Yours, Anne186 ANNE FRANKMONDAY, FEBRUARY 14, 1944Dearest Kitty,A lot has changed for me since Saturday. Whats happenedis this: I was longing for something (and still am), but. . .a small, a very small, part of the problem has been resolved.
164. On Sunday morning I noticed, to my great joy (Ill behonest with you), that Peter kept looking at me. Not in theusual way. I dont know, I cant explain it, but I suddenlyhad the feeling he wasnt as in love with Margot as I used tothink. All day long I tried not to look at him too much,because whenever I did, I caught him looking at me and then-- well, it made me feel wonderful inside, and thats not afeeling I should have too often.Sunday evening everyone, except Pim and me, was clusteredaround the radio, listening to the "Immortal Music of theGerman Masters." Dussel kept twisting and turning the knobs,which annoyed Peter, and the others too. After restraininghimself for half an hour, Peter asked somewhat irritably ifhe would stop fiddling with the radio. Dussel replied in hishaughtiest tone, "Ich mach das schon!" [Ill decide that.]Peter got angry and made an insolent remark. Mr. van Daansided with him, and Dussel had to back down. That was it.The reason for the disagreement wasnt particularlyinteresting in and of itself, but Peter has apparently takenthe matter very much to heart, because this morning, when Iwas rummaging around in the crate of books in the attic,Peter came up and began telling me what had happened. Ididnt know anything about it, but Peter soon realized hedfound an attentive listener and started warming up to hissubject."Well, its like this," he said. "I dont usually talkmuch, since I know beforehand Ill just be tongue-tied. Istart stuttering and blushing and I twist my words around somuch I finally have to stop, because I cant find the rightwords. Thats what happened yesterday. I meant to saysomething entirely different, but once I started, I got allmixed up. Its awful. I used to have a bad habit, andsometimes I wish I still did: whenever I was mad at someone,Id beat them up instead of arguing with them. I know thismethod wont get me anywhere, and thats why I admire you.Youre never at a loss for words: you say exactly what youwant to say and arent in the least bit shy.""Oh, youre wrong about that," I replied. "Most of what Isay comes out very differently from the way Id planned. Plus
165. I talk too much and too long, and thats just as bad.""Maybe, but you have the advantage that no one can seeyoure embarrassed. You dont blush or go to pieces."I couldnt help being secretly amused at his words.However, since I wanted him to go on talking quietly abouthimself, I hid my laughter, sat down on a cushion on thefloor, wrapped my arms around my knees and gazed at himintently.Im glad theres someone else in this house who flies intothe same rages as I do. Peter seemed relieved that he couldcriticize Dussel without being afraid Id tell. As for me, Iwas pleased too, because I sensed a strong feeling offellowship, which I only remember having had with mygirlfriends.Yours, AnneTUESDAY, FEBRUARY 15, 1944The minor run-in with Dussel had several repercussions,for which he had only himself to blame. Monday evening Dusselcame in to see Mother and told her triumphantly that Peterhad asked him that morning if hed slept well, and then addedhow sorry he was about what had happened Sunday evening -- hehadnt really meant what hed said. Dussel assured him hehadnt taken it to heart. So everYthing was right as rainagain. Mother passed this story on to me, and I was secretlyamazed that Peter, whod been so angry at Dussel, had humbledhimself, despite all his assurances to the contrary.I couldnt refrain from sounding Peter out on the subject,and he instantly replied that Dussel had been lying. Youshould have seen Peters face. I wish Id had a camera.Indignation, rage, indecision, agitation and much morecrossed his face in rapid succession.That evening Mr. van Daan and Peter really told Dusseloff. But it couldnt have been all that bad, since Peter hadanother dental appointment today.Actually, they never wanted to speak to each other again.
166. WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 16, 1944Peter and I hadnt talked to each other all day, exceptfor a few meaningless words. It was too cold to go up to theattic, and anyway, it was Margots birthday. At twelve-thirtyhe came to look at the presents and hung around chattinglonger than was strictly necessary, something hed never havedone otherwise. But I got my chance in the afternoon. Since Ifelt like spoiling Margot on her birthday, I went to get thecoffee, and after that the potatoes. When I came to Petersroom, he immediately took his papers off the stairs, and Iasked if I should close the trapdoor to the attic."Sure," he said, "go ahead. When youre ready to come backdown, just knock and Ill open it for you."I thanked him, went upstairs and spent at least tenminutes searching around in the barrel for the smallestpotatoes. My back started aching, and the attic was cold.Naturally, I didnt bother to knock but opened the trap-doormyself. But he obligingly got up and took the pan out of myhands."I did my best, but I couldnt find any smaller ones.""Did you look in the big barrel?""Yes, Ive been through them all."By this time I was at the bottom of the stairs, and heexamined the pan of potatoes he was still holding. "Oh, butthese are fine," he said, and added, as I took the pan fromhim, "My compliments!"As he said this, he gave me such a warm, tender look thatI started glowing inside. I could tell he wanted to pleaseme, but since he couldnt make a long complimentary speech,he said everything with his eyes. I understood him so welland was very grateful. It still makes me happy to think backto those words and that look!When I went downstairs, Mother said she needed morepotatoes, this time for dinner, so I volunteered to go back
167. up. When I entered Peters room, I apologized for disturbinghim again. As I was going up the stairs, he stood up, wentover to stand between the stairs and the wall, grabbed my armand tried to stop me."Ill go," he said. "I have to go upstairs anyway."I replied that it wasnt really necessary, that I didnthave to get only the small ones this time. Convinced, he letgo of my arm. On my way back, he opened the trapdoor and onceagain took the pan from me. Standing by the door, I asked,"What are you working on?""French," he replied.I asked if I could take a look at his lessons. Then I wentto wash my hands and sat down across from him on the divan.After Id explained some French to him, we began to talk.He told me that after the war he wanted to go to the DutchEast Indies and live on a rubber plantation. He talked abouthis life at home, the black market and how he felt like aworthless bum. I told him he had a big inferiority complex.He talked about the war, saying that Russia and England werebound to go to war against each other, and about the Jews. Hesaid life would have been much easier if hed been aChristian or could become one after the war. I asked if hewanted to be baptized, but that wasnt what he meant either.He said hed never be able to feel like a Christian, but thatafter the war hed make sure nobody would know he was Jewish.I felt a momentary pang. Its such a shame he still has atouch of dishonesty in him.Peter added, "The Jews have been and always will be thechosen people!"I answered, "Just this once, I hope theyll be chosen forsomething good!"But we went on chatting very pleasantly, about Father,about judging human character and all sorts of things, somany that I cant even remember them all.I left at a quarter past five, because Bep had arrived.
168. That evening he said something else I thought was nice. Wewere talking about the picture of a movie star Id once givenhim, which has been hanging in his room for at least a yearand a half. He liked it so much that I offered to give him afew more."No," he replied, "Id rather keep the one Ive got. Ilook at it every day, and the people in it have become myfriends."I now have a better understanding of why he always hugsMouschi so tightly. He obviously needs affection too. Iforgot to mention something else he was talking about. Hesaid, "No, Im not afraid, except when it comes to thingsabout myself, but Im working on that."Peter has a huge inferiority complex. For example, healways thinks hes so stupid and were so smart. When I helphim with French, he thanks me a thousand times. One of thesedays Im going to say, "Oh, cut it out! Youre much better atEnglish and geography!"Anne FrankTHURSDAY, FEBRUARY 17, 1944Dear Kitty,I was upstairs this morning, since I promised Mrs. van D.Id read her some of my stories. I began with "Evas Dream,"which she liked a lot, and then I read a few passages from"The Secret Annex," which had her in stitches. Peter alsolistened for a while (just the last part) and asked if Idcome to his room sometime to read more.I decided I had to take a chance right then and there, soI got my notebook and let him read that bit where Cady andHans talk about God. I cant really tell what kind ofimpression it made on him. He said something I dont quiteremember, not about whether it was good, but about the ideabehind it. I told him I just wanted him to see that I didntwrite only amusing things. He nodded, and I left the room.Well see if I hear anything more!
169. Yours, Anne FrankFRIDAY, FEBRUARY 18, 1944My dearest Kitty,Whenever I go upstairs, its always so I can see "him."Now that I have something to look forward to, my life herehas improved greatly.At least the object of my friendship is always here, and Idont have to be afraid of rivals (except for Margot). Dontthink Im in love, because Im not, but I do have the feelingthat something beautiful is going to develop between Peterand me, a kind of friendship and a feeling of trust. I go seehim whenever I get the chance, and its not the way it usedto be, when he didnt know what to make of me. On thecontrary, hes still talking away as Im heading out thedoor. Mother doesnt like me going upstairs. She always saysIm bothering Peter and that I should leave him alone.Honestly, cant she credit me with some intuition? She alwayslooks at me so oddly when I go to Peters room. When I comedown again, she asks me where Ive been. Its terrible, butIm beginning to hate her!Yours, Anne M. FrankSATURDAY, FEBRUARY 19, 1944Dearest Kitty,Its Saturday again, and that should tell you enough. Thismorning all was quiet. I spent nearly an hour upstairs makingmeatballs, but I only spoke to "him" in passing.When everyone went upstairs at two-thirty to either reador take a nap, I went downstairs, with blanket and all, tosit at the desk and read or write. Before long I couldnttake it anymore. I put my head in my arms and sobbed my heartout. The tears streamed down my cheeks, and I feltdesperately unhappy. Oh, if only he" had come to comfortme.
170. It was past four by the time I went upstairs again. Atfive oclock I set off to get some potatoes, hoping onceagain that wed meet, but while I was still in the bathroomfixing my hair, he went to see Boche.I wanted to help Mrs. van D. and went upstairs with mybook and everything, but suddenly I felt the tears comingagain. I raced downstairs to the bathroom, grabbing the handmirror on the way. I sat there on the toilet, fully dressed,long after I was through, my tears leaving dark spots on thered of my apron, and I felt utterly dejected.Heres what was going through my mind: "Oh, Ill neverreach Peter this way. Who knows, maybe he doesnt even likeme and he doesnt need anyone to confide in. Maybe he onlythinks of me in a casual sort of way. Ill have to go back tobeing alone, without anyone to confide in and without Peter,without hope, comfort or anything to look forward to. Oh, ifonly I could rest my head on his shoulder and not feel sohopelessly alone and deserted! Who knows, maybe he doesntcare for me at all and looks at the others in the same tenderway. Maybe I only imagined it was especially for me. Oh,Peter, if only you could hear me or see me. If the truth isdisappointing, I wont be able to bear it."A little later I felt hopeful and full of expectationagain, though my tears were still flowing -- on the inside.Yours, Anne M. FrankSUNDAY, FEBRUARY 20, 1944What happens in other peoples houses during the rest ofthe week happens here in the Annex on Sundays. While otherpeople put on their best clothes and go strolling in the sun,we scrub, sweep and do the laundry.Eight oclock. Though the rest of us prefer to sleep in,Dussel gets up at eight. He goes to the bathroom, thendownstairs, then up again and then to the bathroom, where hedevotes a whole hour to washing himself.Nine-thirty. The stoves are lit, the blackout screen is
171. taken down, and Mr. van Daan heads for the bathroom. One ofmy Sunday morning ordeals is having to lie in bed and look atDussels back when hes praying. I know it sounds strange,but a praying Dussel is a terrible sight to behold. Its notthat he cries or gets sentimental, not at all, but he doesspend a quarter of an hour -- an entire fifteen minutes --rocking from his toes to his heels. Back and forth, back andforth. It goes on forever, and if I dont shut my eyes tight,my head starts to spin.Ten-fifteen. The van Daans whistle; the bathrooms free.In the Frank family quarters, the first sleepy faces arebeginning to emerge from their pillows. Then everythinghappens fast, fast, fast. Margot and I take turns doing thelaundry. Since its quite cold downstairs, we put on pantsand head scarves. Meanwhile, Father is busy in the bathroom.Either Margot or I have a turn in the bathroom at eleven, andthen were all clean.Eleven-thirty. Breakfast. I wont dwell on this, sincetheres enough talk about food without my bringing thesubject up as well.Twelve-fifteen. We each go our separate ways. Father, cladin overalls, gets down on his hands and knees and brushes therug so vigorously that the room is enveloped in a cloud ofdust. Mr. Dussel makes the beds (all wrong, of course),always whistling the same Beethoven violin concerto as hegoes about his work. Mother can be heard shuffling around theattic as she hangs up the washing. Mr. van Daan puts on hishat and disappears into the lower regions, usually followedby Peter and Mouschi. Mrs. van D. dons a long apron, a blackwool jacket and overshoes, winds a red wool scarf around herhead, scoops up a bundle of dirty laundry and, with awell-rehearsed washerwomans nod, heads downstairs. Margotand I do the dishes and straighten up the room.WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 23,1944My dearest Kitty,The weathers been wonderful since yesterday, and Iveperked up quite a bit. My writing, the best thing I have, iscoming along well. I go to the attic almost every morning to
172. get the stale air out of my lungs. This morning when I wentthere, Peter was busy cleaning up. He finished quickly andcame over to where I was sitting on my favorite spot on thefloor. The two of us looked out at the blue sky, the barechestnut tree glistening with dew, the seagulls and otherbirds glinting with silver as they swooped through the air,and we were so moved and entranced that we couldnt speak. Hestood with his head against a thick beam, while I sat. Webreathed in the air, looked outside and both felt that thespell shouldnt be broken with words. We remained like thisfor a long while, and by the time he had to go to the loft tochop wood, I knew he was a good, decent boy. He climbed theladder to the loft, and I followed; during the fifteenminutes he was chopping wood, we didnt say a word either. Iwatched him from where I was standing, and could see he wasobviously doing his best to chop the right way and show offhis strength. But I also looked out the open window, lettingmy eyes roam over a large part of Amsterdam, over therooftops and on to the horizon, a strip of blue so pale itwas almost invisible."As long as this exists," I thought, "this sunshine andthis cloudless sky, and as long as I can enjoy it, how can Ibe sad?"The best remedy for those who are frightened, lonely orunhappy is to go outside, somewhere they can be alone, alonewith the sky, nature and God. For then and only then can youfeel that everything is as it should be and that God wantspeople to be happy amid natures beauty and simplicity.As long as this exists, and that should be forever, I knowthat there will be solace for every sorrow, whatever thecircumstances. I firmly believe that nature can bring comfortto all who suffer.Oh, who knows, perhaps it wont be long before I can sharethis overwhelming feeling of happiness with someone who feelsthe same as I do.Yours, AnneP.S. Thoughts: To Peter.
173. Weve been missing out on so much here, so very much, andfor such a long time. I miss it just as much as you do. Imnot talking about external things, since were well providedfor in that sense; I mean the internal things. Like you, Ilong for freedom and fresh air, but I think weve been amplycompensated for their loss. On the inside, I mean.This morning, when I was sitting in front of the windowand taking a long, deep look outside at God and nature, I washappy, just plain happy. Peter, as long as people feel thatkind of happiness within themselves, the joy of nature,health and much more besides, theyll always be able torecapture that happiness.Riches, prestige, everything can be lost. But thehappiness in your own heart can only be dimmed; it willalways be there, as long as you live, to make you happyagain.Whenever youre feeling lonely or sad, try going to theloft on a beautiful day and looking outside. Not at thehouses and the rooftops, but at the sky. As long as you canlook fearlessly at the sky, youll know that youre purewithin and will find happiness once more.SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 27, 1944My dearest Kitty,From early in the morning to late at night, all I do isthink about Peter. I fall asleep with his image before myeyes, dream about him and wake up with him still looking atme.I have the strong feeling that Peter and I arent reallyas different as we may seem on the surface, and Ill explainwhy: neither Peter nor I have a mother. His is toosuperficial, likes to flirt and doesnt concern herself muchwith what goes on in his head. Mine takes an active interestin my life, but has no tact, sensitivity or motherlyunderstanding.Both Peter and I are struggling with our innermostfeelings. Were still unsure of ourselves and are too
174. vulnerable, emotionally, to be dealt with so roughly.Whenever that happens, I want to run outside or hide myfeelings. Instead, I bang the pots and pans, splash the waterand am generally noisy, so that everyone wishes I were milesaway. Peters reaction is to shut himself up, say little, sitquietly and daydream, all the while carefully hiding his trueself.But how and when will we finally reach each other?I dont know how much longer I can continue to keep thisyearning under control.Yours, Anne M. FrankMONDAY, FEBRUARY 28, 1944My dearest Kitty,Its like a nightmare, one that goes on long after Imawake. I see him nearly every hour of the day and yet I cantbe with him, I cant let the others notice, and I have topretend to be cheerful, though my heart is aching.Peter Schiff and Peter van Daan have melted into onePeter, whos good and kind and whom I long for desperately.Mothers horrible, Fathers nice, which makes him even moreexasperating, and Margots the worst, since she takesadvantage of my smiling face to claim me for herself, whenall I want is to be left alone.Peter didnt join me in the attic, but went up to the loftto do some carpentry work. At every rasp and bang, anotherchunk of my courage broke off and I was even more unhappy. Inthe distance a clock was tolling Be pure in heart, be purein mind!"Im sentimental, I know. Im despondent and foolish, Iknow that too.Oh, help me!Yours, Anne M. Frank
175. WEDNESDAY, MARCH 1, 1944Dearest Kitty,My own affairs have been pushed to the background by . . .a break-in. Im boring you with all my break-ins, but whatcan I do when burglars take such pleasure in honoring Gies &Go. with their presence? This incident is much morecomplicated than the last one, in July 1943.Last night at seven-thirty Mr. van Daan was heading, asusual, for Mr. Kuglers office when he saw that both theglass door and the office door were open. He was surprised,but he went on through and was even more astonished to seethat the alcove doors were open as well and that there was aterrible mess in the front office."Theres been a burglary" flashed through his mind. Butjust to make sure, he went downstairs to the front door,checked the lock and found everything closed. "Bep andPeter must just have been very careless this evening," Mr.van. D. concluded. He remained for a while in Mr. Kuglersoffice, switched off the lamp and went upstairs withoutworrying much about the open doors or the messy office.Early this morning Peter knocked at our door to tell usthat the front door was wide open and that the projector andMr. Kuglers new briefcase had disappeared from the closet.Peter was instructed to lock the door. Mr. van Daan told ushis discoveries of the night before, and we were extremelyworried.The only explanation is that the burglar must have had aduplicate key, since there were no signs of a forced entry.He must have sneaked in early in the evening, shut the doorbehind him, hidden himself when he heard Mr. van Daan, fledwith the loot after Mr. van Daan went upstairs and, in hishurry, not bothered to shut the door.Who could have our key? Why didnt the burglar go to thewarehouse? Was it one of our own warehouse employees, andwill he turn us in, now that hes heard Mr. van Daan andmaybe even seen him?
176. Its really scary, since we dont know whether the burglarwill take it into his head to try and get in again. Or was heso startled when he heard someone else in the building thathell stay away?Yours, AnneP.S. Wed be delighted if you could hunt up a gooddetective for us. Obviously, theres one condotion: he mustbe relied upon not to mform on people in hiding.THURSDAY, MARCH 2, 1944Dearest Kitty,Margot and I were in the attic together today. I cantenjoy being there with her the way I imagine itd be withPeter (or someone else). I know she feels the same about mostthings as I do!While doing the dishes, Bep began talking to Mother andMrs. van Daan about how discouraged she gets. What help didthose two offer her? Our tactless mother, especially, onlymade things go from bad to worse. Do you know what her advicewas? That she should think about all the other people in theworld who are suffering! How can thinking about the misery ofothers help if youre miserable yourself? I said as much.Their response, of course, was that I should stay out ofconversations of this sort.The grown-ups are such idiots! As if Peter, Margot, Bepand I didnt all have the same feelings. The only thing thathelps is a mothers love, or that of a very, very closefriend. But these two mothers dont understand the firstthing about us! Perhaps Mrs. van Daan does, a bit more thanMother. Oh, I wish I could have said something to poor Bep,something that I know from my own experience would havehelped. But Father came between us, pushing me roughly aside.Theyre all so stupid!I also talked to Margot about Father and Mother, about hownice it could be here if they werent so aggravating. Wed beable to organize evenings in which everyone could take turns
177. discussing a given subject. But weve already been throughall that. Its impossible for me to talk here! Mr. van Daangoes on the offensive, Mother i gets sarcastic and cant sayanythina in a normal voice, Father doesnt feel like takingpart, nor does Mr. Dussel, and Mrs. van D. is attacked sooften that she just sits there with a red face, hardly ableto put up a fight anymore. And what about us? We arentallowed to have an opinion! My, my, arent they progressive!Not have an opinion! People can tell you to shut up, but theycant keep you from having an opinion. You cant forbidsomeone to have an opinion, no matter how young they are! Theonly thing that would help Bep, Margot, Peter and me would begreat love and devotion, which we dont get here. And no one,especially not the idiotic sages around here, is capable ofunderstanding us, since were more sensitive and much moreadvanced in our thinking than any of them ever suspect!Love, what is love? I dont think you can really put itinto words. Love is understanding someone, caring for him,sharing his joys and sorrows. This eventually includesphysical love. Youve shared something, given something awayand received something in return, whether or not youremarried, whether or not you have a baby. Losing your virtuedoesnt matter, as long as you know that for as long as youlive youll have someone at your side who understands you,and who doesnt have to be shared with anyone else!Yours, Anne M. FrankAt the moment, Mothers grouching at me again; shesclearly jealous because I talk to Mrs. van Daan more than toher. What do I care!I managed to get hold of Peter this afternoon, and wetalked for at least forty-five minutes. He wanted to tell mesomething about himself, but didnt find it easy. He finallygot it out, though it took a long time. I honestly didntknow whether it was better for me to stay or to go. But Iwanted so much to help him! I told him about Bep and howtactless our mothers are. He told me that his parents fightconstantly, about politics and cigarettes and all kinds ofthings. As Ive told you before, Peters very shy, but nottoo shy to admit that hed be perfectly happy not to see hisparents for a year or two. "My father isnt as nice as he
178. looks," he said. "But in the matter of the cigarettes,Mothers absolutely right."I also told him about my mother. But he came to Fathersdefense. He thought he was a "terrific guy."Tonight when I was hanging up my apron after doing thedishes, he called me over and asked me not to say anythingdownstairs about his parents having had another argument andnot being on speaking terms. I promised, though Id alreadytold Margot. But Im sure Margot wont pass it on."Oh no, Peter," I said, you dont have to worry about me.Ive learned not to blab everything I hear. I never repeatwhat you tell me."He was glad to hear that. I also told him what terriblegossips we are, and said, "Margots quite right, of course,when she says Im not being honest, because as much as I wantto stop gossiping, theres nothing I like better thandiscussing Mr. Dussel.""Its good that you admit it," he said. He blushed, andhis sincere compliment almost embarrassed me too.Then we talked about "upstairs" and "downstairs" somemore. Peter was really rather surprised to hear that dontlike his parents. "Peter," I said, "you know Im alwayshonest, so why shouldnt I tell you this as well? We can seetheir faults too."I added, "Peter, Id really like to help you. Will you letme? Youre caught in an awkward position, and I know, eventhough you dont say anything, that it upsets you.""Oh, your help is always welcome!""Maybe itd be better for you to talk to Father. You cantell him anything, he wont pass it on.""I know, hes a real pal.""You like him a lot, dont you?"
179. Peter nodded, and I continued, "Well, he likes you too,you know!"He looked up quickly and blushed. It was really touchingto see how happy these few words made him."You think so?" he asked."Yes," I said. "You can tell from the little things helets slip now and then."Then Mr. van Daan came in to do some dictating.Peters a "terrific guy," just like Father!Yours, Anne M. FrankFRIDAY, MARCH 3,1944My dearest Kitty,When I looked into the candle tonight, I felt calm andhappy again. It seems Grandma is in that candle, and itsGrandma who watches over and protects me and makes me feelhappy again. But. . . theres someone else who governs all mymoods and thats. . . Peter. I went to get the potatoestoday, and while I was standing on the stairway with my panfull, he asked, "What did you do during the lunch break?"I sat down on the stairs, and we began to talk. Thepotatoes didnt make it to the kitchen until five-fifteen (anhour after Id gone to get them). Peter didnt say anythingmore about his parents; we just talked about books and aboutthe past. Oh, he gazes at me with such warmth in his eyes; Idont think it will take much for me to fall in love withhim.He brought the subject up this evening. I went to his roomafter peeling potatoes and remarked on how hot it was. "Youcan tell the temperature by looking at Margot and me, becausewe turn white when its cold and red when its hot." I said."In love?" he asked.
180. "Why should I be in love?" It was a pretty silly answer(or, rather, question)."Why not?" he said, and then it was time for dinner.What did he mean? Today I finally managed to ask himwhether my chatter bothered him. All he said was,"Oh, its fine with me!" I cant tell how much of hisreply was due to shyness.Kitty, I sound like someone whos in love and can talkabout nothing but her dearest darling. And Peter is adarling. Will I ever be able to tell him that? Only if hethinks the same of me, but Im the kind of person you have totreat with kid gloves, I know that all too well.And he likes to be left alone, so I dont know how much helikes me. In any case, were getting to know each other alittle better. I wish we dared to say more. But who knows,maybe that time will come sooner than I think!Once or twice a day he gives me a knowing glance, I winkback, and were both happy. It seems crazy to talk about hisbeing happy, and yet I have the overwhelming feeling hethinks the same way I do.Yours, Anne M. FrankSATURDAY, MARCH 4, 1944Dear Kitty,This is the first Saturday in months that hasnt beentiresome, dreary and boring. The reason is Peter. Thismorning as I was on my way to the attic to hang up my apron,Father asked whether I wanted to stay and practice my French,and I said yes. We spoke French together for a while and Iexplained something to Peter, and then we worked on ourEnglish. Father read aloud from Dickens, and I was in seventhheaven, since I was sitting on Fathers chair, close toPeter.I went downstairs at quarter to eleven. When I went back
181. up at eleven-thirty, Peter was already waiting for me on thestairs. We talked until quarter to one. Whenever I leave theroom, for example after a meal, and Peter has a chance and noone else can hear, he says, "Bye, Anne, see you later."Oh, Im so happy! I wonder if hes going to fall in lovewith me after all? In any case, hes a nice boy, and you haveno idea how good it is to talk to him!Mrs. van D. thinks its all right for me to talk toPeter, but today she asked me teasingly, "Can I trust youtwo up there?""Of course," I protested. "I take that as an insult!"Morning, noon and night, I look forward to seeing Peter.Yours, Anne M. FrankPS. Before I forget, last night everything was blanketedin snow. Now its thawed and theres almost nothing left.MONDAY, MARCH 6, 1944Dearest Kitty,Ever since Peter told me about his parents, Ive felt acertain sense of responsibthty toward him-dont you thinkthats strange? Its as though their quarrels were just asmuch my business as his, and yet I dont dare bring it upanymore, because Im afraid it makes him uncomfortable. Iwouldnt want to intrude, not for all the money in the world.I can tell by Peters face that he ponders things just asdeeply as I do. Last night I was annoyed when Mrs. van D.scoffed, "The thinker!" Peter flushed and looked embarrassed,and I nearly blew my top.Why dont these people keep their mouths shut?You cant imagine what its like to have to stand on thesidelines and see how lonely he is, without being able to doanything. I can imagine, as if I were in his place, how
182. despondent he must sometimes feel at the quarrels. And aboutlove. Poor Peter, he needs to be loved so much!It sounded so cold when he said he didnt need anyfriends. Oh, hes so wrong! I dont think he means it. Heclings to his masculinity, his solitude and his feignedindif- ference so he can maintain his role, so hell never,ever have to show his feelings. Poor Peter, how long can hekeep it up? Wont he explode from this superhuman effort?Oh, Peter, if only I could help you, if only you would letme! Together we could banish our loneliness, yours and mine!Ive been doing a great deal of thinking, but not sayingmuch. Im happy when I see him, and happier still if the sunshines when were together. I washed my hair yesterday, andbecause I knew he was next door, I was very rambunctious. Icouldnt help it; the more quiet and serious I am on theinside, the noisier I get on the outside!Who will be the first to discover the chink in my armor?Its just as well that the van Daans dont have adaughter. My conquest could never be so challenging, sobeautiful and so nice with someone of the same sex!Yours, Anne M. FrankPS. You know Im always honest with you, so I think Ishould tell you that I live from one encounter to the next. Ikeep hoping to discover that hes dying to see me, and Im inraptures when I notice his bashful attempts. I think hedlike to be able to express himself as easily as I do; littledoes he know its his awkwardness that I find so touching.TUESDAY, MARCH 7,1944Dearest Kitty,When I think back to my life in 1942, it all seems sounreal. The Anne Frank who enjoyed that heavenly existencewas completely different from the one who has grown wisewithin these walls. Yes, it was heavenly. Five admirers onevery street corner, twenty or so friends, the favorite of
183. most of my teachers, spoiled rotten by Father and Mother,bags full of candy and a big allowance. What more couldanyone ask for?Youre probably wondering how I could have charmed allthose people. Peter says It s ecause I m "attractive," butthat isnt it entirely. The teachers were amused andentertained by my clever answers, my witty remarks, my smthngface and my critical mind. Thats all I was: a terribleflirt, coquettish and amusing. I had a few plus points, whichkept me in everybodys good graces: I was hardworking, honestand generous. I would never have refused anyone who wanted topeek at my answers, I was magnanimous with my candy, and Iwasnt stuck-up.Would all that admiration eventually have made meoverconfident? Its a good thing that, at the height of myglory, I was suddenly plunged into reality. It took me morethan a year to get used to doing without admiration.How did they see me at school? As the class comedian, theeternal ringleader, never in a bad mood, never a crybaby. Wasit any wonder that everyone wanted to bicycle to school withme or do me little favors?I look back at that Anne Frank as a pleasant, amusing, butsuperficial girl, who has nothing to do with me. What didPeter say about me? "Whenever I saw you, you were surroundedby a flock of girls and at least two boys, you were alwayslaughing, and you were always the center of attention!" Hewas right.Whats remained of that Anne Frank? Oh, I haventforgotten how to laugh or toss off a remark, Im just asgood, if not better, at raking people over the coals, and Ican still flirt and be amusing, if I want to be . . .But theres the catch. Id like to live that seeminglycarefree and happy life for an evening, a few days, a week.At the end of that week Id be exhausted, and would begrateful to the first person to talk to me about somethingmeaningful. I want friends, not admirers. Peo- ple whorespect me for my character and my deeds, not my flatteringsmile. The circle around me would be much smaller, but what
184. does that matter, as long as theyre sincere?In spite of everything, I wasnt altogether happy in 1942;I often felt Id been deserted, but because I was on the goall day long, I didnt think about it. I enjoyed myself asmuch as I could, trying consciously or unconsciously to fillthe void with jokes.Looking back, I realize that this period of my life hasirrevocably come to a close; my happy-go-lucky, carefreeschooldays are gone forever. I dont even miss them. Iveoutgrown them. I can no longer just kid around, since myserious side is always there.I see my life up to New Years 1944 as if I were lookingthrough a powerful magnifying glass. When I was at home, mylife was filled with sunshine. Then, in the middle of 1942,everything changed overnight. The quarrels, the accusations-- I couldnt take it all in. I was caught off guard, and theonly way I knew to keep my bearings was to talk back.The first half of 1943 brought crying spells, lonelinessand the gradual realization of my faults and short- comings,which were numerous and seemed even more so. I filled the daywith chatter, tried to draw Pim closer to me and failed. Thisleft me on my own to face the difficult task of improvingmyself so I wouldnt have to hear their reproaches, becausethey made me so despondent.The second half of the year was slightly better. I becamea teenager, and was treated more like a grown-up. I began tothink about things and to write stories, finally coming tothe conclusion that the others no longer had anything to dowith me. They had no right to swing me back and forth like apendulum on a clock. I wanted to change myself in my own way.I realized I could man- age without my mother, completely andtotally, and that hurt. But what affected me even more wasthe realization that I was never going to be able to confidein Father. I didnt trust anyone but myself.After New Years the second big change occurred: my dream,through which I discovered my longing for . . . a boy; notfor a girlfriend, but for a boyfriend. I also discovered aninner happiness underneath my superficial and cheerful
185. exterior. From time to time I was quiet. Now I live only forPeter, since what happens to me in the future depends largelyon him!I lie in bed at night, after ending my prayers with thewords "Ich Janke air fur all das Cute una Liebe una Schone,"*[* Thank you, God, for all that is good and dear andbeautiful.] and Im filled with joy. I think of going intohiding, my health and my whole being as das Cute; Peterslove (which is still so new and fragile and which neither ofus dares to say aloud), the future, happiness and love as dasLiebe; the world, nature and the tremendous beauty ofeverything, all that splendor, as das Schone.At such moments I dont think about all the misery, butabout the beauty that still remains. This is where Mother andI differ greatly. Her advice in the face of melancholy is:"Think about all the suffering in the world and be thankfulyoure not part of it." My advice is: "Go outside, to thecountry, enjoy the sun and all nature has to offer. Gooutside and try to recapture the happiness within yourself;think of all the beauty in yourself and in everything aroundyou and be happy."I dont think Mothers advice can be right, because whatare you supposed to do if you become part of the suffering?Youd be completely lost. On the contrary, beauty remains,even in misfortune. If you just look for it, you discovermore and more happiness and regain your balance. A personwhos happy will make others happy; a person who has courageand faith will never die in misery!Yours, Anne M. FrankWEDNESDAY, MARCH 8, 1944Margot and I have been writing each other notes, just forfun, of course.Anne: Its strange, but I can only remember the day afterwhat has happened the night before. For example, I suddenlyremembered that Mr. Dussel was snoring loudly last night.(Its now quarter to three on Wednesday af- ternoon and Mr.Dussel is snoring again, which is why it flashed through my
186. mind, of course.) When I had to use the potty, I deliberatelymade more noise to get the snoring to stop.Margot: Which is better, the snoring or the gasping forair?Anne: The snorings better, because it stops when I makenoise, without waking the person in question.What I didnt write to Margot, but what Ill confess toyou, dear Kitty, is that Ive been dreaming of Peter a greatdeal. The night before last I dreamed I was skating righthere in our living room with that little boy from the Apolloice-skating rink; he was with his sister, the girl with thespindly legs who always wore the same blue dress. Iintroduced myself, overdoing it a bit, and asked him hisname. It was Peter. In my dream I wondered just how manyPeters I actually knew!Then I dreamed we were standing in Peters room, facingeach other beside the stairs. I said something to him; hegave me a kiss, but replied that he didnt love me all thatmuch and that I shouldnt flirt. In a desperate and pleadingvoice I said, "Im not flirting, Peter!"When I woke up, I was glad Peter hasnt said it after all.Last night I dreamed we were kissing each other, butPeters cheeks were very disappointing: they werent assoft as they looked. They were more like Fathers cheeks --the cheeks of a man who already shaves.FRIDAY, MARCH 10, 1944My dearest Kitty,The proverb "Misfortunes never come singly" defi- nitelyapplies to today. Peter just got through saying it. Let metell you all the awful things that have happened and that arestill hanging over our heads.First, Miep is sick, as a result of Henk and Aagjeswedding yesterday. She caught cold in the Westerkerk, where
187. the service was held. Second, Mr. Kleiman hasnt returned towork since the last time his stomach started bleeding, soBeps been left to hold down the fort alone. Third, thepolice have arrested a man (whose name I wont put inwriting). Its terrible not only for him, but for us as well,since hes been supplying us with potatoes, butter and jam.Mr. M., as Ill call him, has five children under the age ofthirteen, and another on the way.Last night we had another little scare: we were in themiddle of dinner when suddenly someone knocked on the wallnext door. For the rest of the evening we were nervous andgloomy.Lately I havent been at all in the mood to write downwhats been going on here. Ive been more wrapped up inmyself. Dont get me wrong, Im terribly upset about whatshappened to poor, good-hearted Mr. M., but theres not muchroom for him in my diary.Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday I was in Peters room fromfour-thirty to five-fifteen. We worked on our French andchatted about one thing and another. I really look forward tothat hour or so in the afternoon, but best of all is that Ithink Peters just as pleased to see me.Yours, Anne M. FrankTHE DIARY OF A YOUNG GIRL 213SATURDAY, MARCH 11, 1944Dearest Kitty,I havent been able to sit still lately. I wander up-stairs and down and then back again. I like talking to Peter,but Im always afraid of being a nuisance. Hes told me a bitabout the past, about his parents and about himself, but itsnot enough, and every five minutes I wonder why I find myselflonging for more. He used to think I was a real pain in theneck, and the feeling was mutual. Ive changed my mind, buthow do I know hes changed his? I think he has, but thatdoesnt necessarily mean we have to become the best offriends, although as far as Im concerned, it would make our
188. time here more bearable. But I wont let this drive me crazy.I spend enough time thinking about him and dont have to getyou all worked up as well, simply because Im so miserable!SUNDAY, MARCH 12, 1944Dearest Kitty,Things are getting crazier here as the days go by.Peter hasnt looked at me since yesterday. Hes beenacting as if hes mad at me. Im doing my best not to chaseafter him and to talk to him as little as possible, but itsnot easy! Whats going on, what makes him keep me at armslength one minute and rush back to my side the next? PerhapsIm imagining that its worse than it really is. Perhaps hesjust moody like me, and tomorrow everything will be all rightagain!I have the hardest time trying to maintain a normal facadewhen Im feeling so wretched and sad. I have to talk, helparound the house, sit with the others and, above all, actcheerful! Most of all I miss the outdoors and having a placewhere I can be alone for as long as I want! I think Imgetting everything all mixed up, Kitty, but then, Im in astate of utter confusion: on the one hand, Im half crazywith desire for him, can hardly be in the same room withoutlooking at him; and on the other hand, I wonder why he shouldmatter to me so much and why I cant be calm again!Day and night, during every waking hour, I do nothing butask myself, "Have you given him enough chance to be alone?Have you been spending too much time upstairs? Do you talktoo much about serious subjects hes not yet ready to talkabout? Maybe he doesnt even like you? Has it all been yourimagination? But then why has he told you so much abouthimself? Is he sorry he did?" And a whole lot more.Yesterday afternoon I was so worn out by the sad news fromthe outside that I lay down on my divan for a nap. All Iwanted was to sleep and not have to think. I slept untilfour, but then I had to go next door. It wasnt easy,answering all Mothers questions and inventing an excuse toexplain my nap to Father. I pleaded a headache, which wasnt
189. a lie, since I did have one. . . on the inside!Ordinary people, ordinary girls, teenagers like myself,would think Im a little nuts with all my self-pity. Butthats just it. I pour my heart out to you, and the rest ofthe time Im as impudent, cheerful and self-confident aspossible to avoid questions and keep from getting on my ownnerves.Margot is very kind and would like me to confide in her,but I cant tell her everything. She takes me too seriously,far too seriously, and spends a lot of time thinking abouther loony sister, looking at me closely whenever I open mymouth and wondering, "Is she acting, or does she really meanit?"Its because were always together. I dont want theperson I confide in to be around me all the time. When will Iuntangle my jumbled thoughts? When will I find inner peaceagain?Yours, AnneTUESDAY, MARCH 14, 1944Dearest Kitty,It might be amusing for you (though not for me) to hearwhat were going to eat today. The cleaning lady is workingdownstairs, so at the moment Im seated at the van Daansoilcloth-covered table with a handkerchief sprinkled withfragrant prewar perfume pressed to my nose and mouth. Youprobably dont have the faintest idea what Im talking about,so let me "begin at the begin- ning." The people who supplyus with food coupons have been arrested, so we have just ourfive black-market ra- -, tion books-no coupons, no fats andoils. Since Miep and Mr. Kleiman are sick again, Bep cantmanage the shop- ping. The food is wretched, and so are we.As of tomor- row, we wont have a scrap of fat, butter ormargarine. We cant eat fried potatoes for breakfast (whichweve been doing to save on bread), so were having hotcereal instead, and because Mrs. van D. thinks werestarving, we bought some half-and-half. Lunch today consistsof mashed potatoes and pickled kale. This explains the
190. precautionary measure with the handkerchief. You wouldntbelieve how much kale can stink when its a few years old!The kitchen smells like a mixture of spoiled plums, rotteneggs and brine. Ugh, just the thought of having to eat thatmuck makes me want to throw up! Besides that, our potatoeshave contracted such strange diseases that one out of everytwo buckets of pommes de terre winds up in the garbage. Weentertain ourselves by trying to figure out which diseasetheyve got, and weve reached the conclusion that theysuffer from cancer, smallpox and measles. Honestly, being inhiding during the fourth year of the war is no picnic. Ifonly the whole stinking mess were over!To tell you the truth, the food wouldnt matter so much tome if life here were more pleasant in other ways. But thatsjust it: this tedious existence is starting to make us alldisagreeable. Here are the opinions of the five grown-ups onthe present situation (children arent allowed to haveopinions, and for once Im sticking to the rules):Mrs. van Daan: "Id stopped wanting to be queen of thekitchen long ago. But sitting around doing nothing wasboring, so I went back to cooking. Still, I cant helpcomplaining: its impossible to cook without oil, and allthose disgusting smells make me sick to my stomach. Besides,what do I get in return for my efforts? Ingratitude and ruderemarks. Im always the black sheep; I get blamed foreverything. Whats more, its my opinion that the war ismaking very little progress. The Germans will win in the end.Im terrified that were going to starve, and when Im in abad mood, I snap at everyone who comes near."Mr. van Daan: "I just smoke and smoke and smoke. Then thefood, the political situation and Kerlis moods dont seem sobad. Kerlis a sweetheart. If I dont have anything to smoke,I get sick, then I need to eat meat, life becomes unbearable,nothings good enough, and theres bound to be a flaming row.My Kerlis an idiot."Mrs. Frank: "Foods not very important, but Id love aslice of rye bread right now, because Im so hungry. If Iwere Mrs. van Daan, Id have put a stop to Mr. van Daanssmoking long ago. But I desperately need a cigarette now,because my heads in such a whirl. The van Daans are horrible
191. people; the English may make a lot of mistakes, but the waris progressing. I should keep my mouth shut and be gratefulIm not in Poland."Mr. Frank: "Everythings fine, I dont need a thing. Staycalm, weve got plenty of time. Just give me my potatoes, andIll be quiet. Better set aside some of my rations for Bep.The political situation is improving, Im extremelyoptimistic."Mr. Dussel: "I must complete the task Ive set for myself,everything must be finished on time. The political situationis looking gut, its eempossible for us to get caught.Me, me, me . . . ."Yours, AnneTHURSDAY, MARCH 16, 1944Dearest Kitty,Whew! Released from the gloom and doom for a few moments!All Ive been hearing today is: "If this and that happens,were in trouble, and if so-and-so gets sick, well be leftto fend for ourselves, and if . . ."Well, you know the rest, or at any rate I assume yourefamthar enough with the residents of the Annex to guess whattheyd be talking about.The reason for all the "ifs" is that Mr. Kugler has beencalled up for a six-day work detail, Bep is down with a badcold and will probably have to stay home tomorrow, Miephasnt gotten over her flu, and Mr. Kleimans stom- ach bledso much he lost consciousness. What a tale of woe!We think Mr. Kugler should go directly to a reliabledoctor for a medical certificate of ill health, which he canpresent to the City Hall in Hilversum. The warehouse --employees have been given a day off tomorrow, so Bep will bealone in the office. If (theres another "if) Bep has tostay home, the door will remain locked and well have to beas quiet as mice so the Keg Company wont hear us. At oneoclock Jan will come for half an hour to check on us poor
192. forsaken souls, like a zookeeper.This afternoon, for the first time in ages, Jan gave ussome news of the outside world. You should have seen usgathered around him; it looked exactly like a print: "AtGrandmothers Knee."He regaled his grateful audience with talk of-whatelse?-food. Mrs. P., a friend of Mieps, has been cooking hismeals. The day before yesterday Jan ate carrots with greenpeas, yesterday he had the leftovers, today shes cookingmarrowfat peas, and tomorrow shes plan- ning to mash theremaining carrots with potatoes.We asked about Mieps doctor."Doctor?" said Jan. "What doctor? I called him thismorning and got his secretary on the line. I asked for a fluprescription and was told I could come pick it up tomor- rowmorning between eight and nine. If youve got a particularlybad case of flu, the doctor himself comes to the phone andsays, Stick out your tongue and say "Aah." Oh, I can hearit, your throats infected. Ill write out a prescription andyou can bring it to the phar- macy. Good day. And thatsthat. Easy job hes got, diagnosis by phone. But I shouldntblame the doctors." After all, a person has only two hands,and these days therere too many patients and too fewdoctors."Still, we all had a good laugh at Jans phone call. I canjust imagine what a doctors waiting room looks like thesedays. Doctors no longer turn up their noses at the poorerpatients, but at those with minor illnesses. "Hey, what areyou doing here?" they think. "Go to the end of the line; realpatients have priority!"Yours, AnneTHURSDAY, MARCH 16, 1944Dearest Kitty,The weather is gorgeous, indescribably beautiful; Ill begoing up to the attic in a moment.
193. I now know why Im so much more restless than Peter. Hehas his own room, where he can work, dream, think and sleep.Im constantly being chased from one corner to another. Imnever alone in the room I share with Dussel, though I long tobe so much. Thats another reason I take refuge in the attic.When Im there, or with you, I can be myself, at least for alittle while. Still, I dont want to moan and groan. On thecontrary, I want to be brave!Thank goodness the others notice nothing of my innermostfeelings, except that every day Im growing cooler and morecontemptuous of Mother, less affection- ate to Father andless willing to share a single thought with Margot; Imclosed up tighter than a drum. Above all, I have to maintainmy air of confidence. No one must know that my heart and mindare constantly at war with each other. Up to now reason hasalways won the battle, but will my emotions get the upperhand? Sometimes I fear they will, but more often I actuallyhope they do!Oh, its so terribly hard not to talk to Peter about thesethings, but I know I have to let him begin; its so hard toact during the daytime as if everything Ive said and done inmy dreams had never taken place! Kitty, Anne is crazy, butthen these are crazy times and even crazier circumstances.The nicest part is being able to write down all mythoughts and feelings; otherwise, Id absolutely suffocate. Iwonder what Peter thinks about all these things? I keepthinking Ill be able to talk to him about them one day. Hemust have guessed something about the inner me, since hecouldnt possibly love the outer Anne hes known so far! Howcould someone like Peter, who loves peace and quiet, possiblystand my bustle and noise? Will he be the first and onlyperson to see whats beneath my granite mask? Will it takehim long? Isnt there some old saying about love being akinto pity? Isnt that whats happening here as well? Because Ioften pity him as much as I do myself!I honestly dont know how to begin, I really dont, so howcan I expect Peter to when talking is so much harder for him?If only I could write to him, then at least hed know what Iwas trying to say, since its so hard to say it out loud!
194. Yours, Anne M. FrankFRIDAY, MARCH 17, 1944My dearest darling,Everything turned out all right after all; Bep just had asore throat, not the flu, and Mr. Kugler got a medicalcertificate to excuse him from the work detail. The entireAnnex breathed a huge sigh of relief. Everythings fine here!Except that Margot and I are rather tired of our parents.Dont get me wrong. I still love Father as much as everand Margot loves both Father and Mother, but when youre asold as we are, you want to make a few decisions for yourself,get out from under their thumb. Whenever I go upstairs, theyask what Im going to do, they wont let me salt my food,Mother asks me every evening at eight-fifteen if it isnttime for me to change into my nighty, I and they have toapprove every book I read. I must admit, theyre not at allstrict about that and let me read nearly everything, butMargot and I are sick and tired of having to listen to theircomments and questions all day long.Theres something else that displeases them: I no longerfeel like giving them little kisses morning, noon and night.All those cute nicknames seem so affected, and Fathersfondness for talking about farting and going to the bathroomis disgusting. In short, Id like nothing better than to dowithout their company for a while, and they dont understandthat. Not that Margot and I have ever said any of this tothem. What would be the point? They wouldnt understandanyway.Margot said last night, "What really bothers me is that ifyou happen to put your head in your hands and sigh once ortwice, they immediately ask whether you have a headache ordont feel well."For both of us, its been quite a blow to suddenly realizethat very little remains of the close and harmoni- ous familywe used to have at home! This is mostly because everythingsout of kilter here. By that I mean that were treated like
195. children when it comes to external matters, while, inwardly,were much older than other girls our age. Even though Imonly fourteen, I know what I want, I know whos right andwhos wrong, I have my own opinions, ideas and principles,and though it may sound odd coming from a teenager, I feelIm more of a person than a child -- I feel Im completelyindependent of others. I know Im better at debating orcarrying on a discussion than Mother, I know Im moreobjective, I dont exaggerate as much, Im much tidier andbetter with my hands, and because of that I feel (this maymake you laugh) that Im superior to her in many ways. Tolove someone, I have to admire and respect the person, but Ifeel neither respect nor admiration for Mother!Everything would be all right if only I had Peter, since Iadmire him in many ways. Hes so decent and clever!Yours, Anne M. FrankSATURDAY, MARCH 18, 1944Dearest Kitty,Ive told you more about myself and my feelings than Iveever told a living soul, so why shouldnt that include sex?Parents, and people in general, are very peculiar when itcomes to sex. Instead of telling their sons and daughterseverything at the age of twelve, they send the children outof the room the moment the subject arises and leave them tofind out everything on their own. Later on, when parentsnotice that their children have, somehow, come by theirinformation, they assume they know more (or less) than theyactually do. So why dont they try to make amends by askingthem whats what?A major stumbling block for the adults -- though in myopinion its no more than a pebble -- is that theyre afraidtheir children will no longer look upon marriage as sacredand pure once they realize that, in most cases, this purityis a lot of nonsense. As far as Im concerned, its not wrongfor a man to bring a little experience to a marriage. Afterall, it has nothing to do with the marriage itself, does it?
196. Soon after I turned eleven, they told me aboutmenstruation. But even then, I had no idea where the bloodcame from or what it was for. When I was twelve and a half, Ilearned some more from Jacque, who wasnt as ignorant as Iwas. My own intuition told me what a man and a woman do whentheyre together; it seemed like a crazy idea at first, butwhen Jacque confirmed it, I was proud of myself for havingfigured it out!It was also Jacque who told me that children didnt comeout of their mothers tummies. As she put it, "Where theingredients go in is where the finished product comes out!"Jacque and I found out about the hymen, and quite a few otherdetails, from a book on sex education. I also knew that youcould keep from having children, but how that worked insideyour body remained a mystery. When I came here, Father toldme about prostitutes, etc., but all in all there are stillunanswered questions.If mothers dont tell their children everything, they hearit in bits and pieces, and that cant be right.Even though its Saturday, Im not bored! Thats becauseIve been up in the attic with Peter. I sat there dreamingwith my eyes closed, and it was wonderful.Yours, Anne M. FrankSUNDAY, MARCH 19, 1944Dearest Kitty,Yesterday was a very important day for me. After luncheverything was as usual. At five I put on the potatoes, andMother gave me some blood sausage to take to Peter. I didntwant to at first, but I finally went. He wouldnt accept thesausage, and I had the dreadful feel- ing it was stillbecause of that argument wed had about distrust. Suddenly Icouldnt bear it a moment longer and my eyes filled withtears. Without another word, I re- turned the platter toMother and went to the bathroom to have a good cry. AfterwardI decided to talk things out with Peter. Before dinner thefour of us were helping him with a crossword puzzle, so Icouldnt say anything. But as we were sitting down to eat, I
197. whispered to him, "Are you going to practice your shorthandtonight, Peter?""No," was his reply."Id like to talk to you later on."He agreed.After the dishes were done, I went to his room and askedif hed refused the sausage because of our last quar- rel.Luckily, that wasnt the reason; he just thought it was badmanners to seem so eager. It had been very hot downstairs andmy face was as red as a lobster. So after taking down somewater for Margot, I went back up to get a little fresh air.For the sake of appearances, I first went and stood besidethe van Daans window before going to Peters room. He wasstanding on the left side of the open window, so I went overto the right side. Its much easier to talk next to an openwindow in semidarkness than in broad daylight, and I thinkPeter felt the same way. We told each other so much, so verymuch, that I cant repeat it all. But it felt good; it wasthe most won- derful evening Ive ever had in the Annex. Illgive you a brief description of the various subjects wetouched on.First we talked about the quarrels and how I see them in avery different light these days, and then about how wevebecome alienated from our parents. I told Peter about Motherand Father and Margot and myself. At one point he asked, "Youalways give each other a good-night kiss, dont you?""One? Dozens of them. You dont, do you?""No, Ive never really kissed anyone.""Not even on your birthday?""Yeah, on my birthday I have."We talked about how neither of us really trusts ourparents, and how his parents love each other a great deal andwish hed confide in them, but that he doesnt want to. How Icry my heart out in bed and he goes up to the loft and
198. swears. How Margot and I have only recently gotten to knoweach other and yet still tell each other very little, sincewere always together. We talked about every imaginablething, about trust, feelings and ourselves. Oh, Kitty, he wasjust as I thought he would be.Then we talked about the year 1942, and how different wewere back then; we dont even recognize ourselves from thatperiod. How we couldnt stand each other at first. Hedthought I was a noisy pest, and Id quickly concluded that hewas nothing special. I didnt understand why he didnt flirtwith me, but now Im glad. He also mentioned how he oftenused to retreat to his room. I said that my noise andexuberance and his silence were two sides of the same coin,and that I also liked peace and quiet but dont have anythingfor myself alone, except my diary, and that everyone wouldrather see the back of me, starting with Mr. Dussel, and thatI dont always want to sit with my parents. We discussed howglad he is that my parents have children and how glad I amthat hes here.How I now understand his need to withdraw and hisrelationship to his parents, and how much Id like to helphim when they argue."But youre always a help to me!" he said."How?" I asked, greatly surprised."By being cheerful."That was the nicest thing he said all evening. He alsotold me that he didnt mind my coming to his room the way heused to; in fact, he liked it. I also told him that all ofFathers and Mothers pet names were meaningless, that a kisshere and there didnt automatically lead to trust. We alsotalked about doing things your own way, the diary,loneliness, the difference between everyones inner and outerselves, my mask, etc.It was wonderful. He must have come to love me as afriend, and, for the time being, thats enough. Im sograteful and happy, I cant find the words. I must apolo-gize, Kitty, since my style is not up to my usual standard
199. today. Ive just written whatever came into my head!I have the feeling that Peter and I share a secret.Whenever he looks at me with those eyes, with that smile andthat wink, its as if a light goes on inside me. I hopethings will stay like this and that well have many, manymore happy hours together.Your grateful and happy AnneMONDAY, MARCH 20, 1944Dearest Kitty,This morning Peter asked me if Id come again one evening.He swore I wouldnt be disturbing him, and said that wherethere was room for one, there was room for two. I said Icouldnt see him every evening, since my parents didnt thinkit was a good idea, but he thought I shouldnt let thatbother me. So I told him Id like to come some Saturdayevening and also asked him if hed let me know when you couldsee the moon."Sure," he said, "maybe we can go downstairs and look atthe moon from there." I agreed; Im not really so scared ofburglars.In the meantime, a shadow has fallen on my happiness. Fora long time Ive had the feeling that Margot likes Peter.Just how much I dont know, but the whole situation is veryunpleasant. Now every time I go see Peter Im hurting her,without meaning to. The funny thing is that she hardly letsit show. I know Id be insanely jealous, but Margot just saysI shouldnt feel sorry for her."I think its so awful that youve become the odd oneout," I added."Im used to that," she replied, somewhat bitterly.I dont dare tell Peter. Maybe later on, but he and I needto discuss so many other things first.Mother slapped me last night, which I deserved. I mustnt
200. carry my indifference and contempt for her too far. In spiteof everything, I should try once again to be friendly andkeep my remarks to myself!Even Pim isnt as nice as he used to be. Hes been tryingnot to treat me like a child, but now hes much too cold.Well just have to see what comes of it! Hes warned me thatif I dont do my algebra, I wont get any tutoring after thewar. I could simply wait and see what happens, but Id liketo start again, provided I get a new book.Thats enough for now. I do nothing but gaze at Peter, andIm filled to overflowing!Yours, Anne M. FrankEvidence of Margots goodness. I received this today,March 20, 1944:Anne, yesterday when I said I wasnt jeal- ous of you, Iwasnt being entirely honest. The situation is this: Im notjealous of either you or Peter. Im just sorry I haventfound anyone willi whom to share my thoughts and feelings,and Im not likely to in the near future. But thats why Iwish, from the bottom of my heart, that you will both be ableto place your trust in each other. Youre already missing outon so much here, things other people take for granted.On the other hand, Im certain Id never have gotten asfar with Peter, because I think Id need to feel very closeto a person before I could share my thoughts. Id want tohave the feeling that he understood me through and through,even if I didnt say much. For this reason it would have tobe someone I felt was intellectually superior to me, and thatisnt the case with Peter. But I can imagine your feelingclose to him.So theres no need for you to reproach yourself becauseyou think you te taking something I was entitled to; nothingcould be further from the truth. You and Peter haveeverything to gain by your friendship.My answer:
201. Dearest Margot,Your letter was extremely kind, but I still dont feelcompletely happy about the situation, and I dont think Iever will.At the moment, Peter and I dont trust each other as muchas you seem to think. Its just that when youre standingbeside an open window at twthght, you can say more to eachother than in bright sunshine. Its also easier to whisperyour feelings than to shout them from the rooftops. I thinkyouve begun to feel a kind of sisterly affection for Peterand would like to help him, just as much as I would. Perhapsyoull be able to do that someday, though thats not the kindof trust we have in mind. I believe that trust has to cornefrom both sides; I also think thats the reason why Fatherand I have never really grown so close. But lets not talkabout it anymore. If theres anything you still want todiscuss, please write, because its easier for me to say whatI mean as on paper than face-to-face. You know how le much Iadmire you, and only hope that some of your goodness andFathers goodness will rub off on me, because, in that sense,you two are a lot alike.Yours, AnneWEDNESDAY, MARCH 22,1944Dearest Kitty,I received this letter last night from Margot:Dear Anne,After your letter of yesterday I have the unpleasantfeeling that your conscience bothers you whenever you go toPeters to work or talk; theres really no reason for that.In my heart, I know theres someone who deserves t my trust(as I do his), and I wouldnt be able to tolerate Peter inhis place.However, as you wrote, I do think of Peter as a kind ofbrother. . . a younger brother; weve been sending outfeelers, and a brotherly and sisterly affection mayor may not
202. develop at some later date, but its certainly not reachedthat stage yet. So theres no need for you to feel sorry forme. Now that youve found companionship, enjoy it as much asyou can.In the meantime, things are getting more and morewonderful here. I think, Kitty, that true love may bedeveloping in the Annex. All those jokes about marrying Peterif we stayed here long enough werent so silly after all. Notthat Im thinking of marrying him, mind you. I dont evenknow what hell be like when he grows up. Or if well evenlove each other enough to get married.Im sure now that Peter loves me too; I just dont know inwhat way. I cant figure out if he wants only a good friend,or if hes attracted to me as a girl or as a sister. When hesaid I always helped him when his parents were arguing, I wastremendously happy; it was one step toward making me believein his friendship. I asked him yesterday what hed do ifthere were a dozen Annes who kept popping in to see him. Hisanswer was: "If they were all like you, it wouldnt be sobad." Hes extremely hospitable, and I think he really likesto see me. Mean- while, hes been working hard at learningFrench, even studying in bed until ten-fifteen.Oh, when I think back to Saturday night, to our words, ourvoices, I feel satisfied with myself for the very first time;what I mean is, Id still say the same and wouldnt want tochange a thing, the way I usually do. Hes so handsome,whether hes smthng or just sitting still. Hes so sweet andgood and beautiful. I think what surprised him most about mewas when he discovered that Im not at all the superficial,worldly Anne I appear to be, but a dreamer, like he is, withjust as many troubles!Last night after the dinner dishes, I waited for him toask me to stay upstairs. But nothing happened; I went away.He came downstairs to tell Dussel it was time to listen tothe radio and hung around the bathroom for a while, but whenDussel took too long, he went back upstairs. He paced up anddown his room and went to bed early.The entire evening I was so restless I kept going to thebathroom to splash cold water on my face. I read a bit,
203. daydreamed some more, looked at the clock and waited, waited,waited, all the while listening to his foot- steps. I went tobed early, exhausted.Tonight I have to take a bath, and tomorrow?Tomorrows so far away!Yours, Anne M. FrankMy answer:Dearest Margot,I think the best thing is simply to wait and see whathappens. It cant be much longer before Peter and I will haveto decide whether to go back to the way we were or do some-thing else. I dont know how itll turn out; I cant see anyfarther than the end of my nose.But Im certain of one thing: if Peter and I do becomefriends, Im going to tell him youre also very fond of himand are prepared to help him if he needs you. You wouldntwant me to, Im sure, but I dont care; I dont know whatPeter thinks of you, but Ill ask him when the time comes.Its certainly nothing bad -- on the contrary! Youre welcometo join us in the attic, or wherever we are. You wont bedisturbing us, because we have an unspoken agreement to talkonly in the evenings when its dark.Keep your spirits up! Im doing my best, though its notalways easy. Your time may come sooner than you think.Yours, AnneTHURSDAY, MARCH 23, 1944Dearest Kitty,Things are more or less back to normal here. Our couponmen have been released from prison, thank goodness!Mieps been back since yesterday, but today it was herhusbands turn to take to his bed-chills and fever, the usual
204. flu symptoms. Bep is better, though she still has a cough,and Mr. Kleiman will have to stay home for a long time.Yesterday a plane crashed nearby. The crew was able toparachute out in time. It crashed on top of a school, butluckily there were no children inside. There was a small fireand a couple of people were killed. As the airmen made theirdescent, the Germans sprayed them with bullets. TheAmsterdammers who saw it seethed with rage at such adastardly deed. We-by which I mean the ladies-were alsoscared out of our wits. Brrr, I hate the sound of gunfire.Now about myself.I was with Peter yesterday and, somehow, I honestly dontknow how, we wound up talking about sex. Id made up my minda long time ago to ask him a few things. He knows everything;when I said that Margot and I werent very well informed, hewas amazed. I told him a lot about Margot and me and Motherand Father and said that lately I didnt dare ask themanything. He offered to enlighten me, and I gratefullyaccepted: he described how contraceptives work, and I askedhim very boldly how boys could tell they were grown up. Hehad to think about that one; he said hed tell me tonight. Itold him what had happened to Jacque, and said that girls aredefenseless against strong boys. "Well, you dont have to beafraid of me," he said.When I came back that evening, he told me how it is withboys. Slightly embarrassing, but still awfully nice to beable to discuss it with him. Neither he nor I had everimagined wed be able to talk so openly to a girl or a boy,respectively, about such intimate matters. I think I knoweverything now. He told me a lot about what he calledPrasentivmitteln* [* Should be Praservativmitteln:prophylactics] in German.That night in the bathroom Margot and I were talking aboutBram and Trees, two friends of hers.This morning I was in for a nasty surprise: afterbreakfast Peter beckoned me upstairs. "That was a dirty trickyou played on me," he said. "I heard what you and Margot weresaying in the bathroom last night. I think you just wanted to
205. find out how much Peter knew and then have a good laugh!"I was stunned! I did everything I could to talk him out ofthat outrageous idea; I could understand how he must havefelt, but it just wasnt true!"Oh no, Peter," I said. "Id never be so mean. I told youI wouldnt pass on anything you said to me and I wont. Toput on an act like that and then deliberately be so mean. . .No,Peter, thats not my idea ofa joke.It wouldnt be fair. I didnt say anything, honest. Wontyou believe me?" He assured me he did, but I think well haveto talk about it again sometime. Ive done nothing all daybut worry about it. Thank goodness he came right out and saidwhat was on his mind. Imagine if hed gone around thinking Icould be that mean. Hes so sweet!Now Ill have to tell him everything!Yours, AnneFRIDAY, MARCH 24, 1944Dear Kitty,I often go up to Peters room after dinner nowadays tobreathe in the fresh evening air. You can get around tomeaningful conversations more quickly in the dark than withthe sun tickling your face. Its cozy and snug sitting besidehim on a chair and looking outside. The van Daans and Dusselmake the silliest remarks when I disappear into his room."Annes zweite Heimat,"* [* Annes second home] they say, or"Is it proper for a gentleman to receive young girls in hisroom at night with the lights out?" Peter has amazingpresence of mind in the face of these so-called witticisms.My mother, incidentally, is also bursting with curiosity andsimply dying to ask what we talk about, only shes secretlyafraid Id refuse to answer. Peter says the grown-ups arejust jealous because were young and that we shouldnt taketheir obnoxious comments to heart.Sometimes he comes downstairs to get me, but thatsawkward too, because in spite of all his precautions his face
206. turns bright red and he can hardly get the words out of hismouth. Im glad I dont blush; it must be extremelyunpleasant.Besides, it bothers me that Margot has to sit downstairsall by herself, while Im upstairs enjoying Peters company.But what can I do about it? I wouldnt mind it if she came,but shed just be the odd one out, sitting there like a lumpon a log.Ive had to listen to countless remarks about our suddenfriendship. I cant tell you how often the conversation atmeals has been about an Annex wedding, should the war lastanother five years. Do we take any notice of this parentalchitchat? Hardly, since its all so silly. Have my parentsforgotten that they were young once? Apparently they have. Atany rate, they laugh at us when were serious, and theyreserious when were joking.I dont know whats going to happen next, or whether wellrun out of things to say. But if it goes on like this, welleventually be able to be together without talking. If onlyhis parents would stop acting so strangely. Its probablybecause they dont like seeing me so often; Peter and Icertainly never tell them what we talk about. Imagine if theyknew we were discussing such intimate things.Id like to ask Peter whether he knows what girls looklike down there. I dont think boys are as complicated asgirls. You can easily see what boys look like in photographsor pictures of male nudes, but with women its different. Inwomen, the genitals, or whatever theyre called, are hiddenbetween their legs. Peter has probably never seen a girl upclose. To tell you the truth, neither have I. Boys are a loteasier. How on earth would I go about describing a girlsparts? I can tell from what he said that he doesnt knowexactly how it all fits together. He was talking about the"Muttermund," [* cervix], but thats on the inside, where youcant see it. Everythings pretty well arranged in us women.Until I was eleven or twelve, I didnt realize there was asecond set of labia on the inside, since you couldnt seethem. Whats even funnier is that I thought urine came out ofthe clitoris. I asked Mother one time what that little bumpwas, and she said she didnt know. She can really play dumb
207. when she wants to!But to get back to the subject. How on earth can youexplain what it all looks like without any models?Shall I try anyway? Okay, here goes!When youre standing up, all you see from the front ishair. Between your legs there are two soft, cushiony things,also covered with hair, which press together when yourestanding, so you cant see whats inside. They separate whenyou sit down, and theyre very red and quite fleshy on theinside. In the upper part, between the outer labia, theres afold of skin that, on second thought, looks like a kind ofblister. Thats the clitoris. Then come the inner labia,which are also pressed together in a kind of crease. Whenthey open up, you can see a fleshy little mound, no biggerthan the top of my thumb. The upper part has a couple ofsmall holes in it, which is where the urine comes out. Thelower part looks as if it were just skin, and yet thatswhere the vagina is. You can barely find it, because thefolds of skin hide the opening. The holes so small I canhardly imagine how a man could get in there, much less how ababy could come out. Its hard enough trying to get yourindex finger inside. Thats all there is, and yet it playssuch an important role!Yours, Anne M. FrankSATURDAY, MARCH 25, 1944Dearest Kitty,You never realize how much youve changed until after itshappened. Ive changed quite drastically, everything about meis different: my opinions, ideas, critical outlook. Inwardly,outwardly, nothings the same. And, I might safely add, sinceits true, Ive changed for the better. I once told you that,after years of being adored, it was hard for me to adjust tothe harsh reality of grown-ups and rebukes. But Father andMother are largely to blame for my having to put up with somuch. At home they wanted me to enjoy life, which was fine,but here they shouldnt have encouraged me to agree with themand only shown me "their" side of all the quarrels and
208. gossip. It was a long time before I discovered the score wasfifty-fifty. I now know that many blunders have beencommitted here, by young and old alike. Father and Mothersbiggest mistake in dealing with the van Daans is that theyrenever candid and friendly (admittedly, the friendliness mighthave to be feigned). Above all, I want to keep the peace, andto neither quarrel nor gossip. With Father and Margot thatsnot difficult, but it is with Mother, which is why Im gladshe gives me an occasional rap on the knuckles. You can winMr. van Daan to your side by agreeing with him, listeningquietly, not saying much and most of all . . . responding tohis teasing and his corny jokes with a joke of your own. Mrs.van D. can be won over by talking openly to her and admittingwhen youre wrong. She also frankly admits her faults, ofwhich she has many. I know all too well that she doesntthink as badly of me as she did in the beginning. And thatssimply because Im honest and tell people right to theirfaces what I think, even when its not very flattering. Iwant to be honest; I think it gets you further and also makesyou feel better about yourself.Yesterday Mrs. van D. was talking about the rice we gaveMr. Kleiman. "All we do is give, give, give. But at a certainpoint I think that enough is enough. If hed only take thetrouble, Mr. Kleiman could scrounge up his own rice. Whyshould we give away all our supplies? We need them just asbadly.""No, Mrs. van Daan," I replied. "I dont agree with you.Mr. Kleiman may very well be able to get hold of a littlerice, but he doesnt like having to worry about it. Its notour place to criticize the people who are helping us. Weshould give them whatever they need if we can possibly spareit. One less plate of rice a week wont make that muchdifference; we can always eat beans."Mrs. van D. didnt see it my way, but she added that, eventhough she disagreed, she was willing to back down, and thatwas an entirely different matter.Well, Ive said enough. Sometimes I know what my place isand sometimes I have my doubts, but Ill eventually get whereI want to be! I know I will! Especially now that I have help,since Peter helps me through many a rough patch and rainy
209. day!I honestly dont know how much he loves me and whetherwell ever get as far as a kiss; in any case, I dont want toforce the issue! I told Father I often go see Peter and askedif he approved, and of course he did!Its much easier now to tell Peter things Id nor- mallykeep to myself; for example, I told him I want to write lateron, and if I cant be a writer, to write in addition to mywork.I dont have much in the way of money or worldlypossessions, Im not beautiful, intelligent or clever, butIm happy, and I intend to stay that way! I was born happy, Ilove people, I have a trusting nature, and Id like everyoneelse to be happy too.Your devoted friend, Anne M. FrankAn empty day, though clear and bright,Is just as dark as any night.(I wrote this a few weeks ago and it no longer holds true,but I included it because my poems are so few and farbetween.)MONDAY, MARCH 27, 1944Dearest Kitty,At least one long chapter on our life in hiding should beabout politics, but Ive been avoiding the subject, since itinterests me so little. Today, however, Ill devote an entireletter to politics.Of course, there are many different opinions on thistopic, and its not surprising to hear it frequentlydiscussed in times of war, but. . . arguing so much aboutpolitics is just plain stupid! Let them laugh, swear, makebets, grumble and do whatever they want as long as they stewin their own juice. But dont let them argue, since that onlymakes things worse. The people who come from outside bring usa lot of news that later proves to be untrue; however, up to
210. now our radio has never lied. Jan, Miep, Mr. Kleiman, Bep andMr. Kugler go up and down in their political moods, thoughJan least of all.Here in the Annex the mood never varies. The end- lessdebates over the invasion, air raids, speeches, etc., etc.,are accompanied by countless exclamations such as"Eempossible!, Urn Gottes Willen* [* Oh, for heavens sake].If theyre just getting started now, how long is it going tolast!, Its going splendidly, But, great!"Optimists and pessimists -- not to mention the realists --air their opinions with unflagging energy, and as witheverything else, theyre all certain that they have amonopoly on the truth. It annoys a certain lady that herspouse has such supreme faith in the British, and a certainhusband attacks his wife because of her teasing and dispar-aging remarks about his beloved nation!And so it goes from early in the morning to late at night;the funny part is that they never get tired of it. Ivediscovered a trick, and the effect is overwhelming, just likepricking someone with a pin and watching them jump. Hereshow it works: I start talking about politics.All it takes is a single question, a word or a sentence,and before you know it, the entire family is involved!As if the German "Wehrmacht News" and the English BBCwerent enough, theyve now added special air-raidannouncements. In a word, splendid. But the other side of thecoin is that the British Air Force is operating around theclock. Not unlike the German propaganda machine, which iscranking out lies twenty-four hours a day!So the radio is switched on every morning at eight (if notearlier) and is listened to every hour until nine, ten oreven eleven at night. This is the best evidence yet that theadults have infinite patience, but also that their brainshave turned to mush (some of them, I mean, since I wouldntwant to insult anyone). One broadcast, two at the most,should be enough to last the entire day. But no, those oldnincompoops. . . never mind, Ive already said it all! "MusicWhile You Work," the Dutch broadcast from England, Frank
211. Phillips or Queen Wilhelmina, they each get a turn and fInd awilling listener. If the adults arent eating or sleeping,theyre clustered around the radio talking about eating,sleeping and politics. Whew! Its getting to be a bore, andits all I can do to keep from turning into a dreary oldcrone myself! Though with all the old folks around me, thatmight not be such a bad idea!Heres a shining example, a speech made by our belovedWinston Churchill.Nine oclock, Sunday evening. The teapot, under its cozy,is on the table, and the guests enter the room.Dussel sits to the left of the radio, Mr. van D. in frontof it and Peter to the side. Mother is next to Mr. van D.,willi Mrs. van D. behind them. Margot and I are sitting inthe last row and Pim at the table. I realize this isnt avery clear description of our seating arrangements, but itdoesnt matter. The men smoke, Peters eyes close from thestrain of listening, Mama is dressed in her long, darknegligee, Mrs. van D. is trembling because of the planes,which take no notice of the speech but fly blithely on towardEssen, Father is slurping his tea, and Margot and I areunited in a sisterly way by the sleeping Mouschi, who hastaken possession of both our knees. Margots hair is incurlers and my nightgown is too small, too tight and tooshort. It all looks so intimate, cozy and peaceful, and foronce it really is. Yet I await the end of the speech willidread. Theyre impatient, straining at the leash to startanother argument! Pst, pst, like a cat luring a mouse fromits hole, they goad each other into quarrels and dissent.Yours, AnneTUESDAY, MARCH 28, 1944My dearest Kitty,As much as Id like to write more on politics, I have lotsof other news to report today. First, Mother has virtuallyforbidden me to go up to Peters, since, according to her,Mrs. van Daan is jealous. Second, Peters invited Margot tojoin us upstairs. Whether he really means it or is just
212. saying it out of politeness, I dont know. Third, I askedFather if he thought I should take any notice of Mrs. vanDaans jealousy and he said I didnt have to.What should I do now? Mothers angry, doesnt want megoing upstairs, wants me to go back to doing my homework inthe room I share willi Dussel. She may be jealous herself.Father doesnt begrudge us those few hours and thinks itsnice we get along so well. Margot likes Peter too, but feelsthat three people cant talk about the same things as two.Furthermore, Mother thinks Peters in love with me. Totell you the truth, I wish he were. Then wed be even, anditd be a lot easier to get to know each other. She alsoclaims hes always looking at me. Well, I suppose we do giveeach other the occasional wink. But I cant help it if hekeeps admiring my dimples, can I?Im in a very difficult position. Mothers against me andIm against her. Father turns a blind eye to the silentstruggle between Mother and me. Mother is sad, because shestill loves me, but Im not at all unhappy, because she nolonger means anything to me.As for Peter. . . I dont want to give him up. Hes sosweet and I admire him so much. He and I could have a reallybeautiful relationship, so why are the old folks poking theirnoses into our business again? Fortu- nately, Im used tohiding my feelings, so I manage not to show how crazy I amabout him. Is he ever going to say anything? Am I ever goingto feel his cheek against mine, the way I felt Petels cheekin my dream? Oh, Peter andPetel, youre one and the same! They dont understand us;theyd never understand that were content just to sit besideeach other and not say a word. They have no idea of whatdraws us together! Oh, when will we overcome all thesedifficulties? And yet its good that we have to surmountthem, since it makes the end that much more beautiful. Whenhe lays his head on his arms and closes his eyes, hes stilla child; when he plays with Mouschi or talks about her, hesloving; when he carries the potatoes or other heavy loads,hes strong; when he goes to watch the gunfire or walksthrough the dark house to look for burglars, hes brave; and
213. when hes so awkward and clumsy, hes hopelessly endearing.Its much nicer when he explains something to me than when Ihave to teach him. I wish he were superior to me in nearlyevery way!What do we care about our two mothers? Oh, if only hedsay something.Father always says Im conceited, but Im not, Im merelyvain! I havent had many people tell me I was pretty, exceptfor a boy at school who said I looked so cute when I smiled.Yesterday Peter paid me a true com- pliment, and just for funIll give you a rough idea of our conversation.Peter often says, "Smile!" I thought it was strange, soyesterday I asked him, "Why do you always want me to smile?""Because you get dimples in your cheeks. How do you dothat?""I was born with them. Theres also one in my chin. Itsthe only mark of beauty I possess.""No, no, thats not true!""Yes it is. I know Im not beautiful. I never have beenand I never will be!""I dont agree. I think youre pretty.""I am not.""I say you are, and youll have to take my word for it."So of course I then said the same about him.Yours, Anne M. FrankWEDNESDAY, MARCH 29, 1944Dearest Kitty,Mr. Bolkestein, the Cabinet Minister, speaking on theDutch broadcast from London, said that after the war acollection would be made of diaries and letters dealing with
214. the war. Of course, everyone pounced on my diary. Justimagine how interesting it would be if I were to publish anovel about the Secret Annex. The title alone would makepeople think it was a detective story.Seriously, though, ten years after the war people wouldfind it very amusing to read how we lived, what we ate andwhat we talked about as Jews in hiding. Although I tell you agreat deal about our lives, you still know very little aboutus. How frightened the women are during air raids; lastSunday, for instance, when 350 British planes dropped 550tons of bombs on IJmuiden, so that the houses trembled likeblades of grass in the wind. Or how many epidemics are raginghere.You know nothing of these matters, and it would take meall day to describe everything down to the last detail.People have to stand in line to buy vegetables and all kindsof goods; doctors cant visit their patients, since theircars and bikes are stolen the moment they turn their backs;burglaries and thefts are so common that you ask yourselfwhats suddenly gotten into the Dutch to make them solight-fingered. Little children, eight- and eleven-year-olds, smash the windows of peoples homes and stealwhatever they can lay their hands on. People dont dare leavethe house for even five minutes, since theyre liable to comeback and find all their belongings gone. Every day thenewspapers are filled with reward notices for the return ofstolen typewriters, Persian rugs, electric clocks, fabrics,etc. The electric clocks on street corners are dismantled,public phones are stripped down to the last wire.Morale among the Dutch cant be good. Everyones hungry;except for the ersatz coffee, a weeks food ration doesntlast two days. The invasions long in coming, the men arebeing shipped off to Germany, the children are sick orundernourished, everyones wearing worn-out clothes andrun-down shoes. A new sole costs 7.50 guil- ders on the blackmarket. Besides, few shoemakers will do repairs, or if theydo, you have to wait four months for your shoes, which mightvery well have disappeared in the meantime.One good thing has come out of this: as the food getsworse and the decrees more severe, the acts of sabo- tage
215. against the authorities are increasing. The ration board, thepolice, the officials-theyre all either helping their fellowcitizens or denouncing them and sending them off to prison.Fortunately, only a small percentage of Dutch people are onthe wrong side.Yours, AnneFRIDAY, MARCH 31, 1944Dearest Kitty,Just imagine, its still fairly cold, and yet most peoplehave been without coal for nearly a month. Sounds awful,doesnt it? Theres a general mood of optimism about theRussian front, because thats going great guns! I dont oftenwrite about the political situation, but I must tell youwhere the Russians are at the moment. Theyve reached thePolish border and the Prut River in Romania. Theyre close toOdessa, and theyve surrounded Ternopol. Every night wereexpecting an extra communique from Stalin.Theyre firing off so many salutes in Moscow, the citymust be rumbling and shaking all day long. Whether they liketo pretend the fightings nearby or they simply dont haveany other way to express their joy, I dont know!Hungary has been occupied by German troops.There are still a million Jews living there; they too aredoomed.Nothing special is happening here. Today is Mr. van Daansbirthday. He received two packets of tobacco, one serving ofcoffee, which his wife had managed to save, lemon punch fromMr. Kugler, sardines from Miep, eau de cologne from us,lilacs, tulips and, last but not least, a cake with raspberryfilling, slightly gluey because of the poor quality of theflour and the lack of butter, but deli- cious anyway.All that talk about Peter and me has died down a bit. Hescoming to pick me up tonight. Pretty nice of him, dont youthink, since he hates doing it! Were very good friends. Wespend a lot of time together and talk about every imaginable
216. subject. Its so nice not having to hold back when we come toa delicate topic, the way I would with other boys. Forexample, we were talking about blood and somehow theconversation turned to menstruation, etc. He thinks we womenare quite tough to be able to withstand the loss of blood,and that I am too. I wonder why?My life here has gotten better, much better. God has notforsaken me, and He never will.Yours, Anne M. FrankSATURDAY, APRIL 1, 1944My dearest Kitty,And yet everything is still so difficult. You do know whatI mean, dont you? I long so much for him to kiss me, butthat kiss is taking its own sweet time. Does he still thinkof me as a friend? Dont I mean anything more?You and I both know that Im strong, that I can carry mostburdens alone. Ive never been used to sharing my worrieswith anyone, and Ive never clung to a mother, but Id loveto lay my head on his shoulder and just sit there quietly.I cant, I simply cant forget that dream of Peterscheek, when everything was so good! Does he have the samelonging? Is he just too shy to say he loves me? Why does hewant me near him so much? Oh, why doesnt he say something?Ive got to stop, Ive got to be calm. Ill try to bestrong again, and if Im patient, the rest will follow. But-- and this is the worst part -- I seem to be chasing him.Im always the one who has to go upstairs; he never comes tome. But thats because of the rooms, and he understands why Iobject. Oh, Im sure he understands more than I think .Yours, Anne M. FrankMONDAY, APRIL 3, 1944My dearest Kitty,
217. Contrary to my usual practice, Im going to write you adetailed description of the food situation, since its becomea matter of some difficulty and importance, not only here inthe Annex, but in all of Holland, all of Europe and evenbeyond.In the twenty-one months weve lived here, weve beenthrough a good many "food cycles" -- youll understand whatthat means in a moment. A "food cycle" is a period in whichwe have only one particular dish or type of vegetable to eat.For a long time we ate nothing but endive. Endive with sand,endive without sand, endive with mashed potatoes,endive-and-mashed potato casserole. Then it was spinach,followed by kohlrabi, salsify, cucumbers, tomatoes,sauerkraut, etc., etc.Its not much fun when you have to eat, say, sauer- krautevery day for lunch and dinner, but when youre hungryenough, you do a lot of things. Now, however, were goingthrough the most delightful period so far, because there areno vegetables at all.Our weekly lunch menu consists of brown beans, split-peasoup, potatoes with dumplings, potato kugel and, by the graceof God, turnip greens or rotten carrots, and then its backto brown beans. Because of the bread shortage, we eatpotatoes at every meal, starting with breakfast, but then wefry them a little. To make soup we use brown beans, navybeans, potatoes, packages of vege- table soup, packages ofchicken soup and packages of bean soup. There are brown beansin everything, including the bread. For dinner we always havepotatoes with imitation gravy and -- thank goodness wevestill got it -- beet salad. I must tell you about thedumplings. We make them with government-issue flour, waterand yeast. Theyre so gluey and tough that it feels as if youhad rocks in your stomach, but oh well!The high point is our weekly slice of liverwurst, and thejam on our unbuttered bread. But were still alive, and muchof the time it still tastes good too!Yours, Anne M. FrankWEDNESDAY, APRIL 5, 1944
218. My dearest Kitty,For a long time now I didnt know why I was bothering todo any schoolwork. The end of the war still seemed so faraway, so unreal, like a fairy tale. If the war isnt over bySeptember, I wont go back to school, since I dont want tobe two years behind.Peter filled my days, nothing but Peter, dreams andthoughts until Saturday night, when I felt so utterlymiserable; oh, it was awful. I held back my tears when I waswith Peter, laughed uproariously with the van Daans as wedrank lemon punch and was cheerful and excited, but theminute I was alone I knew I was going to cry my eyes out. Islid to the floor in my nightgown and began by saying myprayers, very fervently. Then I drew my knees to my chest,lay my head on my arms and cried, all huddled up on the barefloor. A loud sob brought me back down to earth, and I chokedback my tears, since I didnt want anyone next door to hearme. Then I tried to pull myself together, saying over andover, "I must, I must, I must. . . " Stiff from sitting insuch an unusual position, I fell back against the side of thebed and kept up my struggle until just before ten-thirty,when I climbed back into bed. It was over!And now its really over. I finally realized that I mustdo my schoolwork to keep from being ignorant, to get on inlife, to become a journalist, because thats what I want! Iknow I can write. A few of my stories are good, mydescriptions of the Secret Annex are humorous, much of mydiary is vivid and alive, but. . . it remains to be seenwhether I really have talent."Evas Dream" is my best fairy tale, and the odd thing isthat I dont have the faintest idea where it came from. Partsof "Cadys Life" are also good, but as a whole its nothingspecial. Im my best and harshest critic. I know whats goodand what isnt. Unless you write yourself, you cant know howwonderful it is; I always used to bemoan the fact that Icouldnt draw, but now Im overjoyed that at least I canwrite. And if I dont have the talent to write books ornewspaper articles, I can always write for myself. But I wantto achieve more than that. I cant imagine having to live
219. like Mother, Mrs. van Daan and all the women who go abouttheir work and are then forgotten. I need to have somethingbesides a husband and children to devote myself to! I dontwant to have lived in vain like most people. I want to beuseful or bring enjoyment to all people, even those Ivenever met. I want to go on living even after my death! Andthats why Im so grateful to God for having given me thisgift, which I can use to develop myself and to express allthats inside me!When I write I can shake off all my cares. My sor- rowdisappears, my spirits are revived! But, and thats a bigquestion, will I ever be able to write something great, willI ever become a journalist or a writer?I hope so, oh, I hope so very much, because writing allowsme to record everything, all my thoughts, ideals andfantasies.I havent worked on "Cadys Life" for ages. In my mindIve worked out exactly what happens next, but the storydoesnt seem to be coming along very well. I might neverfinish it, and itll wind up in the wastepaper basket or thestove. Thats a horrible thought, but then I say to myself,"At the age of fourteen and with so little experience, youcant write about philosophy."So onward and upward, with renewed spirits. Itll all workout, because Im determined to write!Yours, Anne M. FrankTHURSDAY, APRIL 6, 1944Dearest Kitty,You asked me what my hobbies and interests are and Idlike to answer, but Id better warn you, I have lots of them,so dont be surprised.First of all: writing, but I dont really think of that asa hobby.Number two: genealogical charts. Im looking in every
220. newspaper, book and document I can find for the family treesof the French, German, Spanish, English, Austrian, Russian,Norwegian and Dutch royal famthes. Ive made great progresswith many of them, because for ! a long time Ive been takingnotes while reading biogra- I, phies or history books. I evencopy out many of the passages on history.So my third hobby is history, and Fathers already boughtme numerous books. I can hardly wait for the day when Ill beable to go to the public library and ferret out Iii theinformation I need.Number four is Greek and Roman mythology. I have variousbooks on this subject too. I can name the nine Muses and theseven loves of Zeus. I have the wives of Hercules, etc.,etc., down pat.My other hobbies are movie stars and family photographs.Im crazy about reading and books. I adore the history of thearts, especially when it concerns writers, poets andpainters; musicians may come later. I loathe algebra,geometry and arithmetic. I enjoy all my other schoolsubjects, but historys my favorite!Yours, Anne M. FrankTUESDAY, APRIL 11, 1944My dearest Kitty,My heads in a whirl, I really dont know where to begin.Thursday (the last time I wrote you) everything was asusual. Friday afternoon (Good Friday) we played Monopoly;Saturday afternoon too. The days passed very quickly. Aroundtwo oclock on Saturday, heavy firing ii began-machine guns,according to the men. For the rest, everything was quiet.Sunday afternoon Peter came to see me at four-thirty, atmy invitation. At five-fifteen we went to the Ii front attic,where we stayed until six. There was a beautil ful Mozartconcert on the radio from six to seven-fifteen; I especiallyenjoyed the Kleine Nachtmusik. I can hardly bear to listen inthe kitchen, since beautiful music stirs me to the verydepths of my soul. Sunday evening Peter couldnt take his
221. balli, because the washtub was down in the office kitchen,filled with laundry. The two of us went to the front attictogether, and in order to be able to sit comfortably, I tookalong the only cushion I could find in my room. We seatedourselves on a packing crate. Since both the crate and thecushion were very narrow, we were sitting quite close,leaning against two other crates; Mouschi kept us company, sowe werent without a chaperon. Suddenly, at a quarter tonine, Mr. van Daan whistled and asked if we had Mr. Dusselscushion. We jumped up and went downstairs willi the cushion,the cat and Mr. van Daan. This cushion was the source of muchmisery. Dussel was angry because Id taken the one he uses asa pillow, and he was afraid it might be covered with fleas;he had the entire house in an uproar because of this onecushion. In revenge, Peter and I stuck two hard brushes inhis bed, but had to take them out again when Dusselunexpectedly decided to go sit in his room. We had a reallygood laugh at this little intermezzo.But our fun was short-lived. At nine-thirty Peter knockedgently on the door and asked Father to come upstairs and helphim with a difficult English sentence."That sounds fishy," I said to Margot. "Its obviously apretext. You can tell by the way the men are talking thattheres been a break-in!" I was right. The warehouse wasbeing broken into at that very moment. Father, Mr. van Daanand Peter were downstairs in a flash. Margot, Mother, Mrs.van D. and I waited. Four frightened women need to talk, sothats what we did until we heard a bang downstairs. Afterthat all was quiet. The clock struck quarter to ten. Thecolor had drained from our faces, but we remained calm, eventhough we were afraid. Where were the men? What was thatbang? Were they fighting with the burglars? We were tooscared to think; all we could do was wait.Ten oclock, footsteps on the stairs. Father, pale andnervous, came inside, followed by Mr. van Daan. "Lights out,tiptoe upstairs, were expecting the police!" There wasnttime to be scared. The lights were switched off, I grabbed ajacket, and we sat down upstairs."What happened? Tell us quickly!"
222. There was no one to tell us; the men had gone backdownstairs. The four of them didnt come back up until tenpast ten. Two of them kept watch at Peters open window. Thedoor to the landing was locked, the book- case shut. Wedraped a sweater over our night-light, and then they told uswhat had happened:Peter was on the landing when he heard two loud bangs. Hewent downstairs and saw that a large panel was missing fromthe left half of the warehouse door. He dashed upstairs,alerted the "Home Guard," and the four of them wentdownstairs. When they entered the warehouse, the burglarswere going about their business. Without thinking, Mr. vanDaan yelled "Police!" Hur- ried footsteps outside; theburglars had fled. The board was put back in the door so thepolice wouldnt notice the gap, but then a swift kick fromoutside sent it flying to the floor. The men were amazed atthe burglars audacity. Both Peter and Mr. van Daan felt amurderous rage come over them. Mr. van Daan slammed an axagainst the floor, and all was quiet again. Once more thepanel was re- placed, and once more the attempt was foiled.Outside, a man and a woman shone a glaring flashlight throughthe opening, lighting up the entire warehouse. "What the . .." mumbled one of the men, but now their roles had beenreversed. Instead of policemen, they were now burglars. Allfour of them raced upstairs. Dussel and Mr. van Daan snatchedup Dussels books, Peter opened the doors and windows in thekitchen and private office, hurled the phone to the ground,and the four of them finally ended up behind the bookcase.END OF PART ONEIn all probability the man and woman with the flashlighthad alerted the police. It was Sunday night, Easter Sunday.The next day, Easter Monday, the office was going to beclosed, which meant we wouldnt be able to move around untilTuesday morning. Think of it, having to sit in such terrorfor a day and two nights! We thought of nothing, but simplysat there in pitch darkness -- in her fear, Mrs. van D. hadswitched off the lamp. We whispered, and every time we hearda creak, someone said, "Shh, shh."It was ten-thirty, then eleven. Not a sound. Father andMr. van Daan took turns coming upstairs to us. Then, at
223. eleven-fifteen, a noise below. Up above you could hear thewhole family breathing. For the rest, no one moved a muscle.Footsteps in the house, the private office, the kitchen,then. . . on the staircase. All sounds of breathing stopped,eight hearts pounded. Foot- steps on the stairs, then arattling at the bookcase. This moment is indescribable."Now were done for," I said, and I had visions of allfifteen of us being dragged away by the Gestapo that verynight.More rattling at the bookcase, twice. Then we heard a canfall, and the footsteps receded. We were out of danger, sofar! A shiver went though everyones body, I heard severalsets of teeth chattering, no one said a word. We stayed likethis until eleven-thirty.There were no more sounds in the house, but a light wasshining on our landing, right in front of the bookcase. Wasthat because the police thought it looked so suspicious orbecause they simply forgot? Was anyone going to come back andturn it off? We found our tongues again.There were no longer any people inside the building, butperhaps someone was standing guard outside. We then did threethings: tried to guess what was going on, trembled with fearand went to the bathroom. Since the buckets were in theattic, all we had was Peters metal wastepaper basket. Mr.van Daan went first, then Father, but Mother was tooembarrassed. Father brought the waste- basket to the nextroom, where Margot, Mrs. van Daan and I gratefully made useof it. Mother finally gave in. There was a great demand forpaper, and luckily I had some in my pocket.The wastebasket stank, everything went on in a whisper,and we were exhausted. It was midnight."Lie down on the floor and go to sleep!" Margot and I wereeach given a pillow and a blanket. Margot lay down near thefood cupboard, and I made my bed between the table legs. Thesmell wasnt quite so bad when you were lying on the floor,but Mrs. van Daan quietly went and got some powdered bleachand draped a dish towel over the potty as a furtherprecaution.
224. Talk, whispers, fear, stench, farting and peoplecontinually going to the bathroom; try sleeping through that!By two-thirty, however, I was so tired I dozed off and didnthear a thing until three-thirty. I woke up when Mrs. van D.lay her head on my feet."For heavens sake, give me something to put on!" I said.I was handed some clothes, but dont ask what: a pair of woolslacks over my pajamas, a red sweater and a black skirt,white understockings and tattered kneesocks.Mrs. van D. sat back down on the chair, and Mr. van D. laydown with his head on my feet. From three- thirty onward Iwas engrossed in thought, and still shiver- ing so much thatMr. van Daan couldnt sleep. I was preparing myself for thereturn of the police. Wed tell them we were in hiding; ifthey were good people, wed be safe, and if they were Nazisympathizers, we could try to bribe them!"We should hide the radio!" moaned Mrs. van D."Sure, in the stove," answered Mr. van D. "If they findus, they might as well find the radio!""Then theyll also find Annes diary," added Father."So burn it," suggested the most terrified of the group.This and the police rattling on the bookcase were themoments when I was most afraid. Oh, not my diary; if my diarygoes, I go too! Thank goodness Father didnt say anythingmore.Theres no point in recounting all the conversations; somuch was said. I comforted Mrs. van Daan, who was veryfrightened. We talked about escaping, being interrogated bythe Gestapo, phoning Mr. Kleiman and being courageous."We must behave like soldiers, Mrs. van Daan. If our timehas come, well then, itll be for Queen and Country, forfreedom, truth and justice, as theyre always telling us onthe radio. The only bad thing is that well drag the othersdown with us!"
225. After an hour Mr. van Daan switched places with his wifeagain, and Father came and sat beside me. The men smoked onecigarette after another, an occasional sigh was heard,somebody made another trip to the potty, and then everythingbegan allover again.Four oclock, five, five-thirty. I went and sat with Peterby his window and listened, so close we could feel eachothers bodies trembling; we spoke a word or two from time totime and listened intently. Next door they took down theblackout screen. They made a list of everything they wereplanning to tell Mr. Kleiman over the phone, because theyintended to call him at seven and ask him to send someoneover. They were taking a big chance, since the police guardat the door or in the warehouse might hear them calling, butthere was an even greater risk that the police would return.Im enclosing their list, but for the sake of clarity,Ill copy it here.Buralary: Police in building, up to bookcase, but nofarther. Burglars apparently interrupted, forced warehousedoor, fled through garden. Main entrance bolted; Kugler musthave left through second door.Typewriter and adding machine safe in black chest inprivate office.Mieps or Beps laundry in washtub in kitchen.Only Bep or Kugler have key to second door; lock may bebroken.Try to warn jan and get key, look around office; also feedcat.For the rest, everything went according to plan. Mr.Kleiman was phoned, the poles were removed from the doors,the typewriter was put back in the chest. Then we all sataround the table again and waited for either jan or thepolice.Peter had dropped off to sleep and Mr. van Daan ANNE FRANK
226. and I were lying on the floor when we heard loud footstepsbelow. I got up quietly. "Its Jan!""No, no, its the police!" they all said.There was a knocking at our bookcase. Miep whis- tled.This was too much for Mrs. van Daan, who sank limply in herchair, white as a sheet. If the tension had lasted anotherminute, she would have fainted.Jan and Miep came in and were met with a delightful scene.The table alone would have been worth a photograph: a copy ofCinema &.. Theater, opened to a page of dancing girls andsmeared with jam and pectin, which wed been taking to combatthe diarrhea, two jam jars, half a bread roll, a quarter of abread roll, pectin, a mirror, a comb, matches, ashes,cigarettes, tobacco, an ashtray, books, a pair of underpants,a flashlight, Mrs. van Daans comb, toilet paper, etc.Jan and Miep were of course greeted with shouts and tears.Jan nailed a pinewood board over the gap in the door and wentoff again with Miep to inform the police of the break-in.Miep had also found a note under the ware- house door fromSleegers, the night watchman, who had noticed the hole andalerted the police. Jan was also planning to see Sleegers.So we had half an hour in which to put the house andourselves to rights. Ive never seen such a transformation asin those thirty minutes. Margot and I got the beds readydownstairs, went to the bathroom, brushed our teeth, washedour hands and combed our hair. Then I straightened up theroom a bit and went back upstairs. The table had already beencleared, so we got some water, made coffee and tea, boiledthe milk and set the table. Father and Peter emptied ourimprovised potties and rinsed them with warm water andpowdered bleach. The largest one was filled to the brim andwas so heavy they had a hard time lifting it. To make thingsworse, it was leaking, so they had to put it in a bucket.At eleven oclock Jan was back and joined us at the table,and gradually everyone began to relax. Jan had the followingstory to tell:Mr. Sleegers was asleep, but his wife told Jan that her
227. husband had discovered the hole in the door while making hisrounds. He called in a policeman, and the two of themsearched the building. Mr. Sleegers, in his capacity as nightwatchman, patrols the area every night on his bike,accompanied by his two dogs. His wife said he would come onTuesday and tell Mr. Kugler the rest. No one at the policestation seemed to know anything about the break-in, but theymade a note to come first thing Tuesday morning to have alook.On the way back Jan happened to run into Mr. van Hoeven,the man who supplies us with potatoes, and told him of thebreak-in. "I know," Mr. van Hoeven calmly replied. "Lastnight when my wife and I were walking past your building, Isaw a gap in the door. My wife wanted to walk on, but Ipeeked inside with a flashlight, and thats when the burglarsmust have run off. To be on the safe side, I didnt call thepolice. I thought it wouldnt be wise in your case. I dontknow anything, but I have my suspicions." Jan thanked him andwent on. Mr. van Hoeven obviously suspects were here,because he always delivers the potatoes at lunchtime. Adecent man!It was one oclock by the time Jan left and wed done thedishes. All eight of us went to bed. I woke up at quarter tothree and saw that Mr. Dussel was already up. My face rumpledwith sleep, I happened to run into Peter in the bathroom,just after hed come downstairs. We agreed to meet in theoffice. I freshened up a bit and went down."After all this, do you still dare go to the front attic?"he asked. I nodded, grabbed my pillow, with a cloth wrappedaround it, and we went up together. The weather was gorgeous,and even though the air-raid sirens soon began to wail, westayed where we were. Peter put his arm around my shoulder, Iput mine around his, and we sat quietly like this until fouroclock, when Margot came to get us for coffee.We ate our bread, drank our lemonade and joked (we werefinally able to again), and for the rest everything was backto normal. That evening I thanked Peter because hed been thebravest of us all.None of us have ever been in such danger as we were that
228. night. God was truly watching over us. Just think-the policewere right at the bookcase, the light was on, and still noone had discovered our hiding place! "Now were done for!"Id whispered at that moment, but once again we were spared.When the invasion comes and the bombs start falling, itll beevery man for himself, but this time we feared for thosegood, innocent Christians who are helping us."Weve been saved, keep on saving us!" Thats all we cansay.This incident has brought about a whole lot of changes. Asof now, Dussel will be doing his work in the bathroom, andPeter will be patrolling the house between eight-thirty andnine-thirty. Peter isnt allowed to open his window anymore,since one of the Keg people noticed it was open. We can nolonger flush the toilet after nine-thirty at night. Mr.Sleegers has been hired as night watchman, and tonight acarpenter from the underground is coming to make a barricadeout of our white Frankfurt bedsteads. Debates are going onleft and right in the Annex. Mr. Kugler has reproached us forour carelessness. Jan also said we should never godownstairs. What we have to do now is find out whetherSleegers can be trusted, whether the dogs will bark if theyhear someone behind the door, how to make the barricade, allsorts of things.Weve been strongly reminded of the fact that were Jewsin chains, chained to one spot, without any rights, but witha thousand obligations. We must put our feelings aside; wemust be brave and strong, bear discomfort with- outcomplaint, do whatever is in our power and trust in God. Oneday this terrible war will be over. The time will come whenwell be people again and not just Jews!Who has inflicted this on us? Who has set us apart fromall the rest? Who has put us through such suffering? Its Godwho has made us the way we are, but its also God who willlift us up again. In the eyes of the world, were doomed, butif, after all this suffering, there are still Jews left, theJewish people will be held up as an example. Who knows, maybeour religion will teach the world and all the people in itabout goodness, and thats the reason, the only reason, wehave to suffer. We can never be just Dutch, or just English,
229. or whatever, we will always be Jews as well. And well haveto keep on being Jews, but then, well want to be.Be brave! Lets remember our duty and perform it withoutcomplaint. There will be a way out. God has never desertedour people. Through the ages Jews have had to suffer, butthrough the ages theyve gone on living, and the centuries ofsuffering have only made them stronger. The weak shall falland the strong shall survive and not be defeated!That night I really thought I was going to die. I waitedfor the police and I was ready for death, like a soldier on abattlefield. Id gladly have given my life for my country.But now, now that Ive been spared, my first wish after thewar is to become a Dutch citizen. I love the Dutch, I lovethis country, I love the language, and I want to work here.And even if I have to write to the Queen herself, I wontgive up until Ive reached my goal!Im becoming more and more independent of my parents.Young as I am, I face life with more courage and have abetter and truer sense of justice than Mother. I know what Iwant, I have a goal, I have opinions, a religion and love. Ifonly I can be myself, Ill be satisfied. I know that Im awoman, a woman with inner strength and a great deal ofcourage!If God lets me live, Ill achieve more than Mother everdid, Ill make my voice heard, Ill go out into the world andwork for mankind!I now know that courage and happiness are needed first!Yours, Anne M. FrankFRIDAY, APRIL 14, 1944Dear Kitty,Everyone here is still very tense. Pim has nearly reachedthe bothng point; Mrs. van D. is lying in bed with a cold,grumbling; Mr. van D. is growing pale without his cigarettes;Dussel, whos having to give up many of his comforts, iscarping at everyone; etc., etc. We seem to have run out of
230. luck lately. The toilets leaking, and the faucets stuck.Thanks to our many connections, well soon be able to getthese repaired.Im occasionally sentimental, as you know, but from timeto time I have reason to be: when Peter and I are sittingclose together on a hard wooden crate among the junk anddust, our arms around each others shoulders, Peter toyingwith a lock of my hair; when the birds outside are trillingtheir songs, when the trees are in bud, when the sun beckonsand the sky is so blue--oh, thats when I wish for so much!All I see around me are dissatisfied and grumpy faces, allI hear are sighs and stifled complaints. Youd think ourlives had taken a sudden turn for the worse. Honestly, thingsare only as bad as you make them. Here in the Annex no oneeven bothers to set a good example. We each have to figureout how to get the better of our own moods!Every day you hear, "If only it were all over!"Work, love, courage and hope,Make me good and help me cope!I really believe, Kit, that Im a little nutty today, andI dont know why. My writings all mixed up, Im jump- ingfrom one thing to another, and sometimes I seriously doubtwhether anyone will ever be interested in this drivel.Theyll probably call it "The Musings of an Ugly Duckling."My diaries certainly wont be of much use to Mr. Bolkesteinor Mr. Gerbrandy.* [* Gerrit Bolkestein was the Minister ofEducation and Pieter Gerbrandy was the Prime Minister of theDutch government in exile in London. See Annes letter ofMarch 29, 1944.]Yours, Anne M. FrankSATURDAY, APRIL 15, 1944Dearest Kitty,"Theres just one bad thing after another. When will itall end?" You can sure say that again. Guess whats happenednow? Peter forgot to unbolt the front door. As a result, Mr.
231. Kugler and the warehouse employees couldnt get in. He wentto Kegs, smashed in our office kitchen window and got inthat way. The windows in the Annex were open, and the Kegpeople saw that too. What must they be thinking? And vanMaaren? Mr. Kuglers furious. We accuse him of not doinganything to reinforce the doors, and then we do a stupidthing like this! Peters extremely upset. At the table,Mother said she felt more sorry for Peter than for anyoneelse, and he nearly began to cry. Were equally to blame,since we usually ask him every day if hes unbolted the door,and so does Mr. van Daan. Maybe I can go comfort him lateron. I want to help him so much!Here are the latest news bulletins about life in theSecret Annex over the last few weeks:A week ago Saturday, Boche suddenly got sick. He sat quitestill and started drooling. Miep immediately picked him up,rolled him in a towel, tucked him in her shopping bag andbrought him to the dog-and-cat clinic. Boche had some kind ofintestinal problem, so the vet gave him medicine. Peter gaveit to him a few times, but Boche soon made himself scarce.Ill bet he was out courting his sweetheart. But now his noseis swollen and he meows whenever you pick him up-he wasprobably trying to steal food and somebody smacked him.Mouschi lost her voice for a few days. Just when we decidedshe had to be taken to the vet too, she started gettingbetter.We now leave the attic window open a crack every night.Peter and I often sit up there in the evening.Thanks to rubber cement and oil paint, our toilet ; couldquickly be repaired. The broken faucet has been replaced.Luckily, Mr. Kleiman is feeling better. Hes going to seea specialist soon. We can only hope he wont need anoperation.This month we received eight Tation books. Unfortunately,for the next two weeks beans have been substituted foroatmeal or groats. Our latest delicacy is piccalilli. Ifyoure out of luck, all you get is a jar full of cucumber andmustard sauce.
232. Vegetables are hard to come by. Theres only lettuce,lettuce and more lettuce. Our meals consist entirely ofpotatoes and imitation gravy.The Russians are in possession of more than half theCrimea. The British arent advancing beyond Cassino. Wellhave to count on the Western Wall. There have been a lot ofunbelievably heavy air raids. The Registry of Births, Deathsand Marriages in The Hague was bombed. All Dutch people willbe issued new ration registration cards.Enough for today.Yours, Anne M. FrankSUNDAY, APRIL 16, 1944My dearest Kitty,Remember yesterdays date, since it was a red-letter dayfor me. Isnt it an important day for every girl when shegets her first kiss? Well then, its no less important to me.The time Bram kissed me on my right cheek or Mr. Woudstra onmy right hand doesnt count. How did I suddenly come by thiskiss? Ill tell you.Last night at eight I was sitting with Peter on his divanand it wasnt long before he put an arm around me. (Since itwas Saturday, he wasnt wearing his overalls.)"Why don t wemove over a little," I said, "so won t keep bumping my headagainst the cupboard."He moved so far over he was practically in the corner. Islipped my arm under his and across his back, and he put hisarm around my shoulder, so that I was nearly engulfed by him.Weve sat like this on other occasions, but never so close aswe were last night. He held me firmly against him, my leftside against his chest; my heart had already begun to beatfaster, but there was more to come. He wasnt satisfied untilmy head lay on his shoulder, with his on top of mine. I satup again after about five minutes, but before long he took myhead in his hands and put it back next to his. Oh, it was sowonderful. I could hardly talk, my pleasure was too intense;
233. he caressed my cheek and arm, a bit clumsily, and played withmy hair. Most of the time our heads were touching.I cant tell you, Kitty, the feeling that ran through me.I was too happy for words, and I think he was too.At nine-thirty we stood up. Peter put on his tennis shoesso he wouldnt make much noise on his nightly round of thebuilding, and I was standing next to him. How I suddenly madethe right movement, I dont know, but before we wentdownstairs, he gave me a. kiss, through my hair, half on myleft cheek and half on my ear. I tore downstairs withoutlooking back, and I long so much for today.Sunday morning, just before eleven.Yours, Anne M. FrankMONDAY, APRIL 17, 1944Dearest Kitty,Do you think Father and Mother would approve of a girl myage sitting on a divan and kissing a seventeen-and-a-half-year-old boy? I doubt they would, but I have to trustmy own judgment in this matter. Its so peaceful and safe,lying in his arms and dreaming, its so thrilling to feel hischeek against mine, its so wonderful to know theres someonewaiting for me. But, and there is a but, will Peter want toleave it at that? I havent forgotten his promise, but. . .he is a boy!I know Im starting at a very young age. Not even fifteenand already so independent -- thats a little hard for otherpeople to understand. Im pretty sure Margot would never kissa boy unless there was some talk of an engagement ormarriage. Neither Peter nor I has any such plans. Im alsosure that Mother never touched a man before she met Father.What would my girlfriends or Jacque say if they knew Id lainin Peters arms with my heart against his chest, my head onhis shoulder and his head and face against mine!Oh, Anne, how terribly shocking! But seriously, I dontthink its at all shocking; were cooped up here, cut off
234. from the world, anxious and fearful, especially lately. Whyshould we stay apart when we love each other? Why shouldntwe kiss each other in times like these? Why should we waituntil weve reached a suitable age? Why should we askanybodys permission?Ive decided to look out for my own interests. Hed neverwant to hurt me or make me unhappy. Why shouldnt I do whatmy heart tells me and makes both of us happy?Yet I have a feeling, Kitty, that you can sense my doubt.It must be my honesty rising in revolt against all thissneaking around. Do you think its my duty to tell Fatherwhat Im up to? Do you think our secret should be shared witha third person? Much of the beauty would be lost, but wouldit make me feel better inside? Ill bring it up with him.Oh, yes, I still have so much I want to discuss with him,since I dont see the point of just cuddling. Sharing ourthoughts with each other requires a great deal of trust, butwell both be stronger because of it!Yours, Anne M. FrankP.S. We were up at six yesterday morning, because thewhole family heard the sounds of a break-in again. It musthave been one of our neighbors who was the victim this time.When we checked at seven oclock, our doors were still shuttight, thank goodness!TUESDAY, APRIL 18,1944Dearest Kitty,Everythings fine here. Last night the carpenter cameagain to put some sheets of iron over the door panels. Fatherjust got through saying he definitely expects large-scaleoperations in Russia and Italy, as well as in the West,before May 20; the longer the war lasts, the harder it is toimagine being liberated from this place.Yesterday Peter and I finally got around to having thetalk weve been postponing for the last ten days. I told himall about girls, without hesitating to discuss the most
235. intimate matters. I found it rather amusing that he thoughtthe opening in a womans body was simply left out ofillustrations. He couldnt imagine that it was actuallylocated between a womans legs. The evening ended with amutual kiss, near the mouth. Its really a lovely feeling!I might take my "favorite quotes notebook" up with mesometime so Peter and I can go more deeply into matters. Idont think lying in each others arms day in and day out isvery satisfying, and I hope he feels the same.After our mild winter weve been having a beautifulspring. April is glorious, not too hot and not too cold, withoccasional light showers. Our chestnut tree is in leaf, andhere and there you can already see a few small blossoms.Bep presented us Saturday with four bouquets of flowers:three bouquets of daffodils, and one bouquet of grapehyacinths for me. Mr. Kugler is supplying us with more andmore newspapers.Its time to do my algebra, Kitty. Bye.Yours, Anne M. FrankWEDNESDAY, APRIL 19, 1944Dearest Darling,(Thats the title of a movie with Dorit Kreysler, Ida Wustand Harald Paulsen!)What could be nicer than sitting before an open window,enjoying nature, listening to the birds sing, feeling the sunon your cheeks and holding a darling boy in your arms? I feelso peaceful and safe with his arm around me, knowing hesnear and yet not having to speak; how can this be bad when itdoes me so much good? Oh, if only we were never disturbedagain, not even by Mouschi.Yours, Anne M. FrankFRIDAY, APRIL 21,1944
236. My dearest Kitty,I stayed in bed yesterday with a sore throat, but since Iwas already bored the very first afternoon and didnt have afever, I got up today. My sore throat has nearly"verschwunden"* [* disappeared].Yesterday, as youve probably already discovered, was ourFiihrers fifty-fifth birthday. Today is the eighteenthbirthday of Her Royal Highness Princess Elizabeth of York.The BBC reported that she hasnt yet been declared of age,though royal children usually are. Weve been wondering whichprince theyll marry this beauty off to, but cant think of asuitable candidate; perhaps her sister, Princess MargaretRose, can have Crown Prince Baudouin of Belgium!Here weve been going from one disaster to the next. Nosooner have the outside doors been reinforced than van Maarenrears his head again. In all likelihood hes the one whostole the potato flour, and now hes trying to pin the blameon Bep. Not surprisingly, the Annex is once again in anuproar. Bep is beside herself with rage. Perhaps Mr. Kuglerwill finally have this shady character tailed.The appraiser from Beethovenstraat was here this morning.He offered us 400 guilders for our chest; in our opinion, theother estimates are also too low.I want to ask the magazine The Prince if theyll take oneof my fairy tales, under a pseudonym, of course. But up tonow all my fairy tales have been too long, so I dont think Ihave much of a chance.Until the next time, darling.Yours, Anne M. FrankTUESDAY, APRIL 25, 1944Dearest Kitty,For the last ten days Dussel hasnt been on speaking termswith Mr. van Daan, and all because of the new securitymeasures since the break-in. One of these was that hes no
237. longer allowed to go downstairs in the evenings. Peter andMr. van Daan make the last round every night at nine-thirty,and after that no one may go downstairs. We cant flush thetoilet anymore after eight at night or after eight in themorning. The windows may be opened only in the morning whenthe lights go on in Mr. Kuglers office, and they can nolonger be propped open with a stick at night. This lastmeasure is the reason for Dussels sulking. He claims thatMr. van Daan bawled him out, but he has only himself toblame. He says hed rather live without food than withoutair, and that they simply must figure out a way to keep thewindows open."Ill have to speak to Mr. Kugler about this," he said tome.I replied that we never discussed matters of this sortwith Mr. Kugler, only within the group."Everythings always happening behind my back. Ill haveto talk to your father about that."Hes also not allowed to sit in Mr. Kuglers officeanymore on Saturday afternoons or Sundays, because themanager of Kegs might hear him if he happens to be nextdoor. Dussel promptly went and sat there anyway. Mr. van Daanwas furious, and Father went downstairs to talk to Dussel,who came up with some flimsy excuse, but even Father didntfall for it this time. Now Fathers keep- ing his dealingswith Dussel to a minimum because Dussel insulted him. Not oneof us knows what he said, but it must have been pretty awful.And to think that that miserable man has his birthday nextweek. How can you celebrate your birthday when youve got thesulks, how can you accept gifts from people you wont eventalk to?Mr. Voskuijl is going downhill rapidly. For more than tendays hes had a temperature of almost a hundred and four. Thedoctor said his condition is hopeless; they think the cancerhas spread to his lungs. The poor man, wed so like to helphim, but only God can help him now!Ive written an amusing story called "Blurry the
238. Explorer," which was a big hit with my three listeners.I still have a bad cold and have passed it on to Margot,as well as Mother and Father. If only Peter doesnt get it.He insisted on a kiss, and called me his El Dorado. You cantcall a person that, silly boy! But hes sweet anyway!Yours, Anne M. FrankTHURSDAY, APRIL 27, 1944Dearest Kitty,Mrs. van D. was in a bad mood this morning. All she didwas complain, first about her cold, not being able to getcough drops and the agony of having to blow her nose all thetime. Next she grumbled that the sun wasnt shining, theinvasion hadnt started, we werent allowed to look out thewindows, etc., etc. We couldnt help but laugh at her, and itcouldnt have been that bad, since she soon joined in.Our recipe for potato kugel, modified due to lack ofonions:Put peeled potatoes through a food mill and add a littledry government-issue flour and salt. Grease a mold orovenproof dish with paraffin or stearin and bake for 21/2hours. Serve with rotten strawberry compote. (Onions notavailable. Nor oil for mold or dough!)At the moment Im reading Emperor Charles V, written by aprofessor at the University of Gottingen; hes spent fortyyears working on this book. It took me five days to readfifty pages. I cant do any more than that. Since the bookhas 598 pages, you can figure out just how long its going totake me. And thats not even counting the second volume. But.. . very interesting!The things a schoolgirl has to do in the course of asingle day! Take me, for example. First, I translated apassage on Nelsons last battle from Dutch into English.Then, I read more about the Northern War (1700-21) involvingPeter the Great, Charles XII, Augustus the Strong, StanislausLeczinsky, Mazeppa, von Gorz, Bran- denburg, Western
239. Pomerania, Eastern Pomerania and Denmark, plus the usualdates. Next, I wound up in Brazil, where I read about Bahiatobacco, the abundance of coffee, the one and a half millioninhabitants of Rio de Janeiro, Pernambuco and Sao Paulo and,last but not least, the Amazon River. Then about Negroes,mulattoes, mestizos, whites, the illiteracy rate -- over 50percent -- and malaria. Since I had some time left, I glancedthrough a genealogical chart: John the Old, William Louis,Ernest Casimir I, Henry Casimir I, right up to littleMargriet Franciska (born in 1943 in Ottawa).Twelve oclock: I resumed my studies in the attic, readingabout deans, priests, ministers, popes and . . . whew, it wasone oclock!At two the poor child (ho hum) was back at work. Old Worldand New World monkeys were next. Kitty, tell me quickly, howmany toes does a hippopotamus have?Then came the Bible, Noahs Ark, Shem, Ham and Japheth.After that, Charles V. Then, with Peter, Thack- erays bookabout the colonel, in English. A French test, and then acomparison between the Mississippi and the Missouri!Enough for today. Adieu!Yours, Anne M. FrankFRIDAY, APRIL 28, 1944Dearest Kitty,Ive never forgotten my dream of Peter Schiff (see thebeginning of January). Even now I can still feel his cheekagainst mine, and that wonderful glow that made up for allthe rest. Once in a while Id had the same feeling with thisPeter, but never so intensely. . . until last night. We weresitting on the divan, as usual, in each others arms.Suddenly the everyday Anne slipped away and the second Annetook her place. The second Anne, whos never overconfident oramusing, but wants only to love and be gentle.I sat pressed against him and felt a wave of emotion comeover me. Tears rushed to my eyes; those from the left fell on
240. his overalls, while those from the right trickled down mynose and into the air and landed beside the first. Did henotice? He made no movement to show that he had. Did he feelthe same way I did? He hardly said a word. Did he realize hehad two Annes at his side? My questions went unanswered.At eight-thirty I stood up and went to the window, wherewe always say good-bye. I was still trembling, I was stillAnne number two. He came over to me, and I threw my armsaround his neck and kissed him on his left cheek. I was aboutto kiss the other cheek when my mouth met his, and we pressedour lips together. In a daze, we embraced, over and overagain, never to stop, oh!Peter needs tenderness. For the first time in his lifehes discovered a girl; for the first time hes seen thateven the biggest pests also have an inner self and a heart,and are transformed as soon as theyre alone with you. Forthe first time in his life hes given himself and hisfriendship to another person. Hes never had a friend before,boy or girl. Now weve found each other. I, for that matter,didnt know him either, had never had someone I could confidein, and its led to this . . .The same question keeps nagging me: "Is it right?" Is itright for me to yield so soon, for me to be so passionate, tobe filled with as much passion and desire as Peter? Can I, agirl, allow myself to go that far?Theres only one possible answer: "Im longing so much. .. and have for such a long time. Im so lonely and now Ivefound comfort!"In the mornings we act normally, in the afternoons too,except now and then. But in the evenings the suppressedlonging of the entire day, the happiness and the bliss of allthe times before come rushing to the surface, and all we canthink about is each other. Every night, after our last kiss,I feel like running away and never looking him in the eyesagain. Away, far away into the darkness and alone!And what awaits me at the bottom of those fourteen stairs?Bright lights, questions and laughter. I have to act normallyand hope they dont notice anything.
241. My heart is still too tender to be able to recover soquickly from a shock like the one I had last night. Thegentle Anne makes infrequent appearances, and shes not aboutto let herself be shoved out the door so soon after shesarrived. Peters reached a part of me that no one has everreached before, except in my dream! Hes taken hold of me andturned me inside out. Doesnt everyone need a little quiettime to put themselves to rights again? Oh, Peter, what haveyou done to me? What do you want from me?Where will this lead? Oh, now I understand Bep. Now, nowthat Im going through it myself, I understand her doubts; ifI were older and he wanted to marry me, what would my answerbe? Anne, be honest! You wouldnt be able to marry him. Butits so hard to let go. Peter still has too little character,too little willpower, too little courage and strength. Hesstill a child, emotionally no older than I am; all he wantsis happiness and peace of mind. Am I really only fourteen? AmI really just a silly schoolgirl? Am I really soinexperienced in everything? I have more experience thanmost; Ive experienced something almost no one my age everhas.Im afraid of myself, afraid my longing is making me yieldtoo soon. How can it ever go right with other boys later on?Oh, its so hard, the eternal struggle between heart andmind. Theres a time and a place for both, but how can I besure that Ive chosen the right time?Yours, Anne M. FrankTUESDAY, MAY 2, 1944Dearest Kitty,Saturday night I asked Peter whether he thinks I shouldtell Father about us. After wed discussed it, he said hethought I should. I was glad; it shows hes sensible, andsensitive. As soon as I came downstairs, I went with Fatherto get some water. While we were on the stairs, I said,"Father, Im sure youve gathered that when Peter and I aretogether, we dont exactly sit at opposite ends of the room.Do you think thats wrong?"
242. Father paused before answering: "No, I dont think itswrong. But Anne, when youre living so close together, as wedo, you have to be careful." He said some other words to thateffect, and then we went upstairs.Sunday morning he called me to him and said, "Anne, Ivebeen thinking about what you said." (Oh, oh, I knew what wascoming!) "Here in the Annex its not such a good idea. Ithought you were just friends. Is Peter in love with you?""Of course not," I answered."Well, you know I understand both of you. But you must bethe one to show restraint; dont go upstairs so often, dontencourage him more than you can help. In matters like these,its always the man who takes the active role, and its up tothe woman to set the limits. Outside, where youre free,things are quite different. You see other boys and girls, youcan go outdoors, take part in sports and all kinds ofactivities. But here, if youre together too much and want toget away, you cant. You see each other every hour of theday-all the time, in fact. Be careful, Anne, and dont takeit too seriously!"I dont, Father, but Peters a decent boy, a nice boy.""Yes, but he doesnt have much strength of character. Hecan easily be influenced to do good, but also to do bad. Ihope for his sake that he stays good, because hes basicallya good person."We talked some more and agreed that Father would speak tohim too.Sunday afternoon when we were in the front attic, Peterasked, "Have you talked to your Father yet, Anne?""Yes," I replied, "Ill tell you all about it. He doesntthink its wrong, but he says that here, where were in suchclose quarters, it could lead to conflicts.""Weve already agreed not to quarrel, and I plan to keepmy promise."
243. "Me too, Peter. But Father didnt think we were serious,he thought we were just friends. Do you think we still canbe?""Yes, I do. How about you?""Me too. I also told Father that I trust you. I do trustyou, Peter, just as much as I do Father. And I think youreworthy of my trust. You are, arent you?""I hope so." (He was very shy, and blushing.)"I believe in you, Peter," I continued. "I believe youhave a good character and that youll get ahead in thisworld."After that we talked about other things. Later I said, "Ifwe ever get out of here, I know you wont give me anotherthought."He got all fired up. "Thats not true, Anne. Oh no, Iwont let you even think that about me!"Just then somebody called us.Father did talk to him, he told me Monday. "Your Fatherthought our friendship might turn into love," he said. "But Itold him wed keep ourselves under control."Father wants me to stop going upstairs so often, but Idont want to. Not just because I like being with Peter, butbecause Ive said I trust him. I do trust him, and I want toprove it to him, but Ill never be able to if I staydownstairs out of distrust.No, Im going!In the meantime, the Dussel drama has been resolved.Saturday evening at dinner he apologized in beautiful Dutch.Mr. van Daan was immediately reconciled. Dussel must havespent all day practicing his speech.Sunday, his birthday, passed without incident. We gave him
244. a bottle of good wine from 1919, the van Daans (who can nowgive their gift after all) presented him with a jar ofpiccalilli and a package of razor blades, and Mr. Kugler gavehim a jar of lemon syrup (to make lemonade), Miep a book,Little Martin, and Bep a plant. He treated everyone to anegg.Yours, Anne M. FrankWEDNESDAY, MAY 3, 1944Dearest Kitty,First the weekly news! Were having a vacation frompolitics. Theres nothing, and I mean absolutely nothing, toreport. Im also gradually starting to believe that theinvasion will come. After all, they cant let the Russians doall the dirty work; actually, the Russians arent doinganything at the moment either.Mr. Kleiman comes to the office every morning now. He gota new set of springs for Peters divan, so Peter will have toget to work reupholstering it; Not surprisingly, he isnt atall in the mood. Mr. Kleiman also brought some flea powderfor the cats.Have I told you that our Boche has disappeared? We haventseen hide nor hair of her since last Thursday. Shes probablyalready in cat heaven, while some animal lover has turned herinto a tasty dish. Perhaps some girl who can afford it willbe wearing a cap made of Boches fur. Peter is heartbroken.For the last two weeks weve been eating lunch ateleven-thirty on Saturdays; in the mornings we have to makedo with a cup of hot cereal. Starting tomorrow itll be likethis every day; that saves us a meal. Vegetables are stillvery hard to come by. This afternoon we had rotten boiledlettuce. Ordinary lettuce, spinach and boiled let- tuce,thats all there is. Add to that rotten potatoes, and youhave a meal fit for a king!I hadnt had my period for more than two months, but itfinally started last Sunday. Despite the mess and bother, Imglad it hasnt deserted me.
245. As you can no doubt imagine, we often say in despair,"Whats the point of the war? Why, oh, why cant people livetogether peacefully? Why all this destruction?"The question is understandable, but up to now no one hascome up with a satisfactory answer. Why is Englandmanufacturing bigger and better airplanes and bombs and atthe same time churning out new houses for reconstruction? Whyare millions spent on the war each day, while not a penny isavailable for medical science, artists or the poor? Why dopeople have to starve when mountains of food are rotting awayin other parts of the world? Oh, why are people so crazy?I dont believe the war is simply the work of politiciansand capitalists. Oh no, the common man is every bit asguilty; otherwise, people and nations would have re- belledlong ago! Theres a destructive urge in people, the urge torage, murder and kill. And until all of humanity, withoutexception, undergoes a metamorphosis, wars will continue tobe waged, and everything that has been carefully built up,cultivated and grown will be cut down and destroyed, only tostart allover again!Ive often been down in the dumps, but never desperate. Ilook upon our life in hiding as an interesting adventure,full of danger and romance, and every privation as an amusingaddition to my diary. Ive made up my mind to lead adifferent life from other girls, and not to become anordinary housewife later on. What Im experiencing here is agood beginning to an interesting life, and thats the reason-- the only reason -- why I have to laugh at the humorousside of the most dangerous moments.Im young and have many hidden qualities; Im young andstrong and living through a big adventure; Im right in themiddle of it and cant spend all day complaining because itsimpossible to have any fun! Im blessed with many things:happiness, a cheerful disposition and strength. Every day Ifeel myself maturing, I feel liberation drawing near, I feelthe beauty of nature and the goodness of the people aroundme. Every day I think what a fascinating and amusingadventure this is! With all that, why should I despair?
246. Yours, Anne M. FrankFRIDAY, MAY 5, 1944Dear Kitty,Fathers unhappy with me. After our talk on Sunday hethought Id stop going upstairs every evening. He wont haveany of that "Knutscherej"* [* Necking] going on. I cantstand that word. Talking about it was bad enough -- why doeshe have to make me feel bad too! Ill have a word with himtoday. Margot gave me some good advice.Heres more or less what Id like to say:I think you expect an explanation from me, Father, so Illgive you one. Youre disap- pointed in me, you expected morerestraint from me, you no doubt want me to act the way afourteen-year-old is supposed to. But thats where yourewrong!Since weve been here, from July 1942 until a few weeksago, I havent had an easy time. If only you knew how much Iused to cry at night, how unhappy and despondent I was, howlonely I felt, youd understand my wanting to go upstairs!Ive now reached the point where I dont need the support ofMother or anyone else. It didnt happen overnight. Ivestruggled long and hard and shed many tears to become asindependent as I am now. You can laugh and refuse to believeme, but I dont care. I know Im an independent person, and Idont feel I need to account to you for my actions. Im onlytelling you this because I dont want you to think Im doingthings behind your back. But theres only one person Imaccountable to, and thats me.When I was having problems, everyone -- and that includesyou -- closed their eyes and ears and didnt help me. On thecontrary, all I ever got were admonitions not to be so noisy.I was noisy only to keep myself from being miserable all thetime. I was overconfident to keep from having to listen tothe voice inside me. Ive been putting on an act for the lastyear and a half, day in, day out. Ive never complained ordropped my mask, nothing of the kind, and now. . . now thebattle is over. Ive won! Im independent, in both body and
247. mind. I dont need a mother anymore, and Ive emerged fromthe struggle a stronger person.Now that its over, now that I know the battle has beenwon, I want to go my own way, to follow the path that seemsright to me. Dont think of me as a fourteen-year-old, sinceall these troubles have made me older; I wont regret myactions, Ill behave the way I think I should!Gentle persuasion wont keep me from going upstairs.Youll either have to forbid it, or trust me through thickand thin. Whatever you do, just leave me alone!Yours, Anne M. FrankSATURDAY, MAY 6, 1944Dearest Kitty,Last night before dinner I tucked the letter Id writteninto Fathers pocket. According to Margot, he read it and wasupset for the rest of the evening. (I was upstairs doing thedishes!) Poor Pim, I might have known what the effect of suchan epistle would be. Hes so sensitive! I immediately toldPeter not to ask any questions or say anything more. Pimssaid nothing else to me about the matter. Is he going to?Everything here is more or less back to normal. We canhardly believe what Jan, Mr. Kugler and Mr. Kleiman tell usabout the prices and the people on the outside; half a poundof tea costs 350.00 guilders, half a pound of coffee 80.00guilders, a pound of butter 35.00 guilders, one egg 1.45guilders. People are paying 14.00 guilders an ounce forBulgarian tobacco! Everyones trading on the black market;every errand boy has something to offer. The delivery boyfrom the bakery has supplied us with darning thread-90 centsfor one measly skein-the milkman can get hold of rationbooks, an undertaker delivers cheese. Break-ins, murders andthefts are daily occurrences. Even the police and nightwatchmen are getting in on the act. Everyone wants to putfood in their stomachs, and since salaries have been frozen,people have had to resort to swindling. The police have theirhands full trying to track down the many girls of fifteen,sixteen, seventeen and older who are reported missing every
248. day.I want to try to finish my story about Ellen, the fairy.Just for fun, I can give it to Father on his birthday,together with all the copyrights.See you later! (Actually, thats not the right phrase. Inthe German program broadcast from England they always closewith "Aufwiederhoren." So I guess I should say, "Until wewrite again.")Yours, Anne M. FrankSUNDAY MORNING, MAY 7,1944Dearest Kitty,Father and I had a long talk yesterday afternoon. I criedmy eyes out, and he cried too. Do you know what he said tome, Kitty?"Ive received many letters in my lifetime, but none ashurtful as this. You, who have had so much love from yourparents. You, whose parents have always been ready to helpyou, who have always defended you, no matter what. You talkof not having to account to us for your actions! You feelyouve been wronged and left to your own devices. No, Anne,youve done us a great injustice!"Perhaps you didnt mean it that way, but thats what youwrote. No, Anne, we have done nothing to deserve such areproach!"Oh, Ive failed miserably. This is the worst thing Iveever done in my entire life. I used my tears to show off, tomake myself seem important so hed respect me. Ive certainlyhad my share of unhappiness, and everything I said aboutMother is true. But to accuse Pim, whos so good and whosdone everything for me-no, that was too cruel for words.Its good that somebody has finally cut me down to size,has broken my pride, because Ive been far too smug. Noteverything Mistress Anne does is good! Any- one whodeliberately causes such pain to someone they say they love
249. is despicable, the lowest of the low!What Im most ashamed of is the way Father has forgivenme; he said hes going to throw the letter in the stove, andhes being so nice to me now, as if he were the one whoddone something wrong. Well, Anne, you still have a lot tolearn. Its time you made a beginning, in- stead of lookingdown at others and always giving them the blame!Ive known a lot of sorrow, but who hasnt at my age? Ivebeen putting on an act, but was hardly even aware of it. Ivefelt lonely, but never desperate! Not like Father, who onceran out into the street with a knife so he could put an endto it all. Ive never gone that far.I should be deeply ashamed of myself, and I am. Whatsdone cant be undone, but at least you can keep it fromhappening again. Id like to start all over, and thatshouldnt be difficult, now that I have Peter. With himsupporting me, I know I can do it! Im not alone anymore. Heloves me, I love him, I have my books, my writing and mydiary. Im not all that ugly, or that stupid, I have a sunnydisposition, and I want to develop a good character!Yes, Anne, you knew full well that your letter was unkindand untrue, but you were actually proud of it! Ill takeFather as my example once again, and I will improve myself.Yours, Anne M. FrankMONDAY, MAY 8, 1944Dearest Kitty,Have I ever told you anything about our family? I dontthink I have, so let me begin. Father was born in Frankfurtam Main to very wealthy parents: Michael Frank owned a bankand became a millionaire, and Alice Sterns parents wereprominent and well-to-do. Michael Frank didnt start outrich; he was a self-made man. In his youth Father led thelife of a rich mans son. Parties every week, balls,banquets, beautiful girls, waltzing, dinners, a huge house,etc. After Grandpa died, most of the money was lost, andafter the Great War and inflation there was nothing left at
250. all. Up until the war there were still quite a few richrelatives. So Father was extremely well-bred, and he had tolaugh yesterday because for the first time in his fifty-fiveyears, he scraped out the frying pan at the table.Mothers family wasnt as wealthy, but still fairlywell-off, and weve listened openmouthed to stories ofprivate balls, dinners and engagement parties with 250guests.Were far from rich now, but Ive pinned all my hopes onafter the war. I can assure you, Im not so set on abourgeois life as Mother and Margot. Id like to spend a yearin Paris and London learning the languages and studying arthistory. Compare that with Margot, who wants to nursenewborns in Palestine. I still have visions of gorgeousdresses and fascinating people. As Ive told you many timesbefore, I want to see the world and do all kinds of excitingthings, and a little money wont hurt!This morning Miep told us about her cousins engagementparty, which she went to on Saturday. The cousins parentsare rich, and the grooms are even richer. Miep made ourmouths water telling us about the food that was served:vegetable soup with meatballs, cheese, rolls with slicedmeat, hors doeuvres made with eggs and roast beef, rollswith cheese, genoise, wine and cigarettes, and you could eatas much as you wanted.Miep drank ten schnapps and smoked three cigarettes --could this be our temperance advocate? If Miep drank allthose, I wonder how many her spouse managed to toss down?Everyone at the party was a little tipsy, of course. Therewere also two officers from the Homicide Squad, who tookphotographs of the wedding couple. You can see were neverfar from Mieps thoughts, since she promptly noted theirnames and addresses in case anything should happen and weneeded contacts with good Dutch people.Our mouths were watering so much. We, whod had nothingbut two spoonfuls of hot cereal for breakfast and wereabsolutely famished; we, who get nothing but half-cookedspinach (for the vitamins!) and rotten pota- toes day afterday; we, who fill our empty stomachs with nothing but boiled
251. lettuce, raw lettuce, spinach, spinach and more spinach.Maybe well end up being as strong as Popeye, though up tonow Ive seen no sign of it!If Miep had taken us along to the party, there wouldnthave been any rolls left over for the other guests. If wedbeen there, wed have snatched up everything in sight,including the furniture. I tell you, we were practicallypulling the words right out of her mouth. We were gatheredaround her as if wed never in all our lives heard of"delicious food or elegant people! And these are thegranddaughters of the distinguished millionaire. The world isa crazy place!Yours, Anne M. FrankTUESDAY, MAY 9, 1944Dearest Kitty,Ive finished my story about Ellen, the fairy. Ive copiedit out on nice notepaper, decorated it with red ink and sewnthe pages together. The whole thing looks quite pretty, but Idont know if its enough of a birthday present. Margot andMother have both written poems.Mr. Kugler came upstairs this afternoon with the news thatstarting Monday, Mrs. Broks would like to spend two hours inthe office every afternoon. Just imagine! The office staffwont be able to come upstairs, the potatoes cant bedelivered, Bep wont get her dinner, we cant go to thebathroom, we wont be able to move and all sorts of otherinconveniences! We proposed a variety of ways to get rid ofher. Mr. van Daan thought a good laxative in her coffee mightdo the trick. "No," Mr. Kleiman answered, "please dont, orwell never get her off the can.A roar of laughter. "The can?" Mrs. van D. asked. "Whatdoes that mean?" An explanation was given. "Is it all rightto use that word?" she asked in perfect innocence. "Justimagine," Bep giggled, "there you are shopping at TheBijenkorf and you ask the way to the can. They wouldnt evenknow what you were talking about!"
252. Dussel now sits on the "can," to borrow the expression,every day at twelve-thirty on the dot. This afternoon Iboldly took a piece of pink paper and wrote:Mr. Dussels Toilet TimetableMornings from 7: 15 to 7:30 A.M.Afternoons after 1 P.M.Otherwise, only as needed!I tacked this to the green bathroom door while he wasstill inside. I might well have added Transgressors will besubject to confinement!" Because our bathroom can be lockedfrom both the inside and the outside.Mr. van Daans latest joke:After a Bible lesson about Adam and Eve, athirteen-year-old boy asked his father, "Tell me, Father, howdid I get born?""Well," the father replied, "the stork plucked you out ofthe ocean, set you down in Mothers bed and bit her in theleg, hard. It bled so much she had to stay in bed for aweek."Not fully satisfied, the boy went to his mother. "Tell me,Mother," he asked, "how did you get born and how did I getborn?"His mother told him the very same story. Finally, hopingto hear the fine points, he went to his grandfather. "Tellme, Grandfather," he said, "how did you get born and how didyour daughter get born?" And for the third time he was toldexactly the same story.That night he wrote in his diary: "After careful inquiry,I must conclude that there has been no sexual intercourse inour family for the last three generations!"I still have work to do; its already three oclock.Yours, Anne M. Frank
253. PS. Since I think Ive mentioned the new cleaning lady, Ijust want to note that shes married, sixty years old andhard of hearing! Very convenient, in view of all the noisethat eight people in hiding are capable of mak- ing.Oh, Kit, its such lovely weather. If only I could gooutside!WEDNESDAY, MAY 10, 1944Dearest Kitty,We were sitting in the attic yesterday afternoon workingon our French when suddenly I heard the splatter of waterbehind me. I asked Peter what it might be. Without pausing toreply, he dashed up to the loft-the scene of the disaster --and shoved Mouschi, who was squatting beside her soggy litterbox, back to the right place. This was followed by shouts andsqueals, and then Mouschi, who by that time had finishedpeeing, took off downstairs. In search of something similarto her box, Mouschi had found herself a pile of woodshavings, right over a crack in the floor. The puddleimmediately trickled down to the attic and, as luck wouldhave it, landed in and next to the potato barrel. The cethngwas dripping, and since the attic floor has also got itsshare of cracks, little yellow drops were leaking through theceiling and onto the dining table, between a pile ofstockings and books.I was doubled up with laughter, it was such a funny sight.There was Mouschi crouched under a chair, Peter armed withwater, powdered bleach and a cloth, and Mr. van Daan tryingto calm everyone down. The room was soon set to rights, butits a well-known fact that cat puddles stink to high heaven.The potatoes proved that all too well, as did the woodshavings, which Father collected in a bucket and broughtdownstairs to burn.Poor Mouschi! How were you to know its impossible to getpeat for your box?AnneTHURSDAY, MAY 11, 1944
254. Dearest Kitty,A new sketch to make you laugh:Peters hair had to be cut, and as usual his mother was tobe the hairdresser. At seven twenty-five Peter vanished intohis room, and reappeared at the stroke of seven-thirty,stripped down to his blue swimming trunks and a pair oftennis shoes."Are you coming?" he asked his mother."Yes, Ill be up in a minute, but I cant find thescissors!"Peter helped her look, rummaging around in her cosmeticsdrawer. "Dont make such a mess, Peter," she grumbled.I didnt catch Peters reply, but it must have beeninsolent, because she cuffed him on the arm. He cuffed herback, she punched him with all her might, and Peter pulledhis arm away with a look of mock horror on his face. "Comeon, old girl!"Mrs. van D. stayed put. Peter grabbed her by the wristsand pulled her all around the room. She laughed, cried,scolded and kicked, but nothing helped. Peter led hisprisoner as far as the attic stairs, where he was obliged tolet go of her. Mrs. van D. came back to the room andcollapsed into a chair with a loud sigh."Die Enifu"hruna der Mutter,". I joked. [* The Abductionof Mother, a possible reference to Mozarts opera TheAbduction from the Seraglio.]"Yes, but he hurt me."I went to have a look and cooled her hot, red wrists withwater. Peter, still by the stairs and growing impa- tientagain, strode into the room with his belt in his hand, like alion tamer. Mrs. van D. didnt move, but stayed by herwriting desk, looking for a handkerchief. "Youve got toapologize first."
255. "All right, I hereby offer my apologies, but only becauseif I dont, well be here till midnight."Mrs. van D. had to laugh in spite of herself. She got upand went toward the door, where she felt obliged to give usan explanation. (By us I mean Father, Mother and me; we werebusy doing the dishes.) "He wasnt like this at home," shesaid. "Id have belted him so hard hed have gone flying downthe stairs [!]. Hes never been so insolent. This isnt thefirst time hes deserved a good hiding. Thats what you getwith a modern upbringing, modern children. Id never havegrabbed my mother like that. Did you treat your mother thatway, Mr. Frank?" She was very upset, pacing back and forth,saying whatever came into her head, and she still hadnt goneupstairs. Finally, at long last, she made her exit.Less than five minutes later she stormed back down thestairs, with her cheeks all puffed out, and flung her apronon a chair. When I asked if she was through, she replied thatshe was going downstairs. She tore down the stairs like atornado, probably straight into the arms of her Putti.She didnt come up again until eight, this time with herhusband. Peter was dragged from the attic, given a mercilessscolding and showered with abuse: ill-mannered brat, no-goodbum, bad example, Anne this, Margot that, I couldnt hear therest.Everything seems to have calmed down again today!Yours, Anne M. FrankP.S. Tuesday and Wednesday evening our beloved Queenaddressed the country. Shes taking a vacation so shell bein good health for her return to the Netherlands.She used words like "soon, when Im back in Holland," "aswift liberation," "heroism" and "heavy burdens."This was followed by a speech by Prime Minister Gerbrandy.He has such a squeaky little childs voice that Motherinstinctively said, "Oooh." A clergyman, who must haveborrowed his voice from Mr. Edel, concluded by asking God to
256. take care of the Jews, all those in concentration camps andprisons and everyone working in Germany.THURSDAY, MAY 11, 1944Dearest Kitty,Since Ive left my entire "junk box" -- including myfountain pen -- upstairs and Im not allowed to disturb thegrown-ups during their nap time (until two-thirty), youllhave to make do with a letter in pencil.Im terribly busy at the moment, and strange as it maysound, I dont have enough time to get through my pile ofwork. Shall I tell you briefly what Ive got to do? Wellthen, before tomorrow I have to finish reading the firstvolume of a biography of Galileo Galilei, since it has to bereturned to the library. I started reading it yesterday andhave gotten up to page 220 out of 320 pages, so Ill manageit. Next week I have to read Palestine at the Cross- roadsand the second volume of Galilei. Besides that, I finishedthe first volume of a biography of Emperor Charles Vyesterday, and I still have to work out the many genealogicalcharts Ive collected and the notes Ive taken. Next I havethree pages of foreign words from my various books, all ofwhich have to be written down, memorized and read aloud.Number four: my movie stars are in a terrible disarray andare dying to be straightened out, but since itll takeseveral days to do that and Professor Anne is, as shesalready said, up to her ears in work, theyll have to put upwith the chaos a while longer. Then therere Theseus,Oedipus, Peleus, Orpheus, Jason and Hercules all waiting tobe untangled, since their various deeds are runningcrisscross through my mind like mul- ticolored threads in adress. Myron and Phidias are also urgently in need ofattention, or else Ill forget entirely how they fit into thepicture. The same applies, for example, to the Seven YearsWar and the Nine Years War. Now Im getting everything allmixed up. Well, what can you do with a memory like mine! Justimagine how forgetful Ill be when Im eighty!Oh, one more thing. The Bible. How long is it going totake before I come to the story of the bathing Susanna? Andwhat do they mean by Sodom and Gomorrah? Oh, theres still so
257. much to find out and learn. And in the meantime, Ive leftCharlotte of the Palatine in the lurch.You can see, cant you, Kitty, that Im full to bursting?And now something else. Youve known for a long time thatmy greatest wish is to be a journalist, and later on, afamous writer. Well have to wait and see if these grandillusions (or delusions!) will ever come true, but up to nowIve had no lack of topics. In any case, after the war Idlike to publish a book called The Secret Annex. It remains tobe seen whether Ill succeed, but my diary can serve as thebasis.I also need to finish "Cadys Life." Ive thought up therest of the plot. After being cured in the sanatorium, Cadygoes back home and continues writing to Hans. Its 1941, andit doesnt take her long to discover Hanss Nazi sympathies,and since Cady is deeply concerned with the plight of theJews and of her friend Marianne, they begin drifting apart.They meet and get back together, but break up when Hans takesup with another girl. Cady is shattered, and because shewants to have a good job, she studies nursing. Aftergraduation she accepts a position, at the urging of herfathers friends, as a nurse in a TB sanatorium inSwitzerland. During her first vacation she goes to Lake Como,where she runs into Hans. He tells her that two years earlierhed married Cadys successor, but that his wife took herlife in a fit of depression. Now that hes seen his littleCady again, he realizes how much he loves her, and once moreasks for her hand in marriage. Cady refuses, even though, inspite of herself, she loves him as much as ever. But herpride holds her back. Hans goes away, and years later Cadylearns that hes wound up in England, where hes strugglingwith ill health.When shes twenty-seven, Cady marries a well-to-do manfrom the country, named Simon. She grows to love him, but notas much as Hans. She has two daughters and a son, Lthan,Judith and Nico. She and Simon are happy together, but Hansis always in the back of her mind until one night she dreamsof him and says farewell.. . .
258. Its not sentimental nonsense: its based on the story ofFathers life.Yours, Anne M. FrankSATURDAY, MAY 13, 1944My dearest Kitty,Yesterday was Fathers birthday, Father and Mothersnineteenth wedding anniversary, a day without the cleaninglady. . . and the sun was shining as its never shone beforein 1944. Our chestnut tree is in full bloom. Its coveredwith leaves and is even more beautiful than last year.Father received a biography of Linnaeus from Mr. Kleiman,a book on nature from Mr. Kugler, The Canals of Amsterdamfrom Dussel, a huge box from the van Daans (wrapped sobeautifully it might have been done by a professional),containing three eggs, a bottle of beer, a jar of yogurt anda green tie. It made our jar of molasses seem rather paltry.My roses smelled wonderful compared to Miep and Beps redcarnations. He was thoroughly spoiled. Fifty petits foursarrived from SiemonsBakery, delicious! Father also treated us to spice cake,the men to beer and the ladies to yogurt. Everything wasscrumptious!Yours, Anne M. FrankTUESDAY, MAY 16, 1944My dearest Kitty, just for a change (since we havent hadone of these in so long) Ill recount a little discussionbetween Mr. and Mrs. van D. last night:Mrs. van D.: "The Germans have had plenty of time tofortify the Atlantic Wall, and theyll certainly doeverything within their power to hold back the British. Itsamazing how strong the Germans are!"Mr. van D.: "Oh, yes, amazing.
259. Mrs. van D.: "It is!"Mr. van D.: "They are so strong theyre bound to win thewar in the end, is that what you mean?"Mrs. van D.: "They might. Im not convinced that theywont."Mr. van D.: "I wont even answer that."Mrs. van D.: "You always wind up answering. You letyourself get carried away, every single time."Mr. van D.: "No, I dont. I always keep my answers to thebare minimum."Mrs. van D.: "But you always do have an answer and youalways have to be right! Your predictions hardly ever cometrue, you know!"Mr. van D.: "So far they have."Mrs. van D.: "No they havent. You said the invasion wasgoing to start last year, the Finns were supposed to havebeen out of the war by now, the Italian campaign ought tohave been over by last winter, and the Russians shouldalready have captured Lemberg. Oh no, I dont set much storeby your predictions."Mr. van D. (leaping to his feet): "Why dont you shut yourtrap for a change? Ill show you whos right; someday youllget tired of needling me. I cant stand your bellyaching aminute longer. just wait, one day Ill make you eat yourwords!" (End of Act One.)Actually, I couldnt help giggling. Mother couldnteither, and even Peter was biting his lips to keep fromlaughing. Oh, those stupid grown-ups. They need to learn afew things first before they start making so many remarksabout the younger generation!Since Friday weve been keeping the windows open again atnight.
260. Yours, Anne M. FrankWhat Our Annex Family Is Interested In(A Systematic Survey of Courses and Readina Matter)Mr. van Daan. No courses; looks up many things in KnaursEncyclopedia and Lexicon; likes to read detective stories,medical books and love stories, exciting or trivial.Mrs. van Daan. A correspondence course in English; likesto read biographical novels and occasionally other kinds ofnovels.Mr. Frank. Is learning English (Dickens!) and a bit ofLatin; never reads novels, but likes serious, rather drydescriptions of people and places.Mrs. Frank. A correspondence course in English; readseverything except detective stories.Mr. Dussel. Is learning English, Spanish and Dutch with nonoticeable results; reads everything; goes along with theopinion of the majority.Peter van Daan. Is learning English, French(correspondence course), shorthand in Dutch, English andGerman, commercial correspondence in English, woodworking,economics and sometimes math; seldom reads, sometimesgeography.Margot Frank. Correspondence courses in English, Frenchand Latin, shorthand in English, German and Dutch,trigonometry, solid geometry, mechanics, phys- ics,chemistry, algebra, geometry, English literature, Frenchliterature, German literature, Dutch literature, bookkeeping,geography, modern history, biology, economics; readseverything, preferably on religion and medicine.Anne Frank. Shorthand in French, English, German andDutch, geometry, algebra, history, geography, art history,mythology, biology, Bible history, Dutch literature; likes toread biographies, dull or exciting, and history books(sometimes novels and light reading).
261. FRIDAY, MAY 19, 1944Dearest Kitty,I felt rotten yesterday. Vomiting (and that from Anne!),headache, stomachache and anything else you can imagine. Imfeeling better today. Im famished, but I think Ill skip thebrown beans were having for dinner.Everythings going fine between Peter and me. The poor boyhas an even greater need for tenderness than I do. He stillblushes every evening when he gets his good-night kiss, andthen begs for another one. Am I merely a better substitutefor Boche? I dont mind. Hes so happy just knowing somebodyloves him.After my laborious conquest, Ive distanced myself alittle from the situation, but you mustnt think my love hascooled. Peters a sweetheart, but Ive slammed the door to myinner self; if he ever wants to force the lock again, hellhave to use a harder crowbar!Yours, Anne M. FrankSATURDAY, MAY 20, 1944Dearest Kitty,Last night when I came down from the attic, I noticed, themoment I entered the room, that the lovely vase of carnationshad fallen over. Mother was down on her hands and kneesmopping up the water and Margot was fishing my papers off thefloor. "What happened?" I asked with anxious foreboding, andbefore they could reply, I assessed the damage from acrossthe room. My entire genealogy file, my notebooks, my books,everything was afloat. I nearly cried, and I was so upset Istarted speaking German. I cant remember a word, butaccording to Margot I babbled something about"unlioersehbarer Schaden, schrecklich, entsetzlich, nie zuersetzen"* [* Incalculable loss, terrible, awful,irreplaceable.] and much more. Fadier burst out laughing andModier and Margot joined in, but I felt like crying becauseall my work and elaborate notes were lost.
262. I took a closer look and, luckily, die "incalculable loss"wasnt as bad as Id expected. Up in die attic I carefullypeeled apart die sheets of paper diat were stuck togedier anddien hung diem on die clodiesline to dry. It was such a funnysight, even I had to laugh. Maria de Medici alongsideCharles V, William of Orange and Marie Antoinette."Its Rassenschande,"* Mr. van Daan joked. [An affront toracial purity.]After entrusting my papers to Peters care, I went backdownstairs."Which books are ruined?" I asked Margot, who was goingdirough them."Algebra," Margot said.But as luck would have it, my algebra book wasnt entirelyruined. I wish it had fallen right in the vase. Ive neverloathed any book as much as that one. Inside the front coverare the names of at least twenty girls who had it before Idid. Its old, yellowed, full of scribbles, crossed-out wordsand revisions. The next time Im in a wicked mood, Im goingto tear the darned thing to pieces!Yours, Anne M. FrankMONDAY, MAY 22,1944Dearest Kitty,On May 20, Father lost his bet and had to give five jarsof yogurt to Mrs. van Daan: the invasion still hasnt begun.I can safely say that all of Amsterdam, all of Holland, infact the entire western coast of Europe, all the way down toSpain, are talking about the invasion day and night,debating, making bets and . . . hoping.The suspense is rising to fever pitch; by no means haseveryone we think of as "good" Dutch people kept their faithin the English, not everyone thinks the English bluff is amasterful strategical move. Oh no, people want deeds-great,
263. heroic deeds.No one can see farther than the end of their nose, no onegives a thought to the fact that the British are fighting fortheir own country and their own people; everyone thinks itsEnglands duty to save Holland, as quickly as possible. Whatobligations do the English have toward us? What have theDutch done to deserve the generous help they so clearlyexpect? Oh no, the Dutch are very much mistaken. The English,despite their bluff, are certainly no more to blame for thewar than all the other countries, large and small, that arenow occupied by the Germans. The British are not about tooffer their excuses; true, they were sleeping during theyears Germany was rearming itself, but all the othercountries, especially those bordering on Germany, were asleeptoo. England and the rest of the world have discovered thatburying your head in the sand doesnt work, and now each ofthem, especially England, is having to pay a heavy price forits ostrich policy.No country sacrifices its men without reason, andcertainly not in the interests of another, and England is noexception. The invasion, liberation and freedom will comesomeday; yet England, not the occupied territories, willchoose the moment.To our great sorrow and dismay, weve heard that manypeople have changed their attitude toward us Jews. Weve beentold that anti-Semitism has cropped up in circles where onceit would have been unthinkable. This fact has affected us allvery, very deeply. The reason for the hatred isunderstandable, maybe even human, but that doesnt make itright. According to the Christians, the Jews are blabbingtheir secrets to the Germans, denouncing their helpers andcausing them to suffer the dreadful fate and punishments thathave already been meted out to so many. All of this is true.But as with everything, they should look at the matter fromboth sides: would Christians act any differently if they werein our place? Could anyone, regardless of whether theyreJews or Christians, remain silent in the face of Germanpressure? Everyone knows its practically impossible, so whydo they ask the impossible of the Jews?Its being said in underground circles that the German
264. Jews who immigrated to Holland before the war and have nowbeen sent to Poland shouldnt be allowed to return here. Theywere granted the right to asylum in Holland, but once Hitleris gone, they should go back to Germany.When you hear that, you begin to wonder why were fightingthis long and difficult war. Were always being told thatwere fighting for freedom, truth and justice! The war isnteven over, and already theres dissension and Jews areregarded as lesser beings. Oh, its sad, very sad that theold adage has been confirmed for the umpteenth time: "Whatone Christian does is his own responsibthty, what one Jewdoes reflects on all Jews."To be honest, I cant understand how the Dutch, a nationof good, honest, upright people, can sit in judgment on usthe way they do. On us-the most oppressed, unfortunate andpitiable people in all the world.I have only one hope: that this anti-Semitism is just apassing thing, that the Dutch will show their true colors,that theyll never waver from what they know in their heartsto be just, for this is unjust!And if they ever carry out this terrible threat, themeager handful of Jews still left in Holland will have to go.We too will have to shoulder our bundles and move on, awayfrom this beautiful country, which once so kindly took us inand now turns its back on us.I love Holland. Once I hoped it would become a fatherlandto me, since I had lost my own. And I hope so still!Yours, Anne M. FrankTHURSDAY, MAY 25, 1944Dearest Kitty,Beps engaged! The news isnt much of a surprise, thoughnone of us are particularly pleased. Bertus may be a nice,steady, athletic young man, but Bep doesnt love him, and tome thats enough reason to advise her against marrying him.
265. Beps trying to get ahead in the world, and Bertus ispulling her back; hes a laborer, without any interests orany desire to make something of himself, and I dont thinkthatll make Bep happy. I can understand Beps wanting to putan end to her indecision; four weeks ago she decided to writehim off, but then she felt even worse. So she wrote him aletter, and now shes engaged.There are several factors involved in this engagement.First, Beps sick father, who likes Bertus very much. Second,shes the oldest of the Voskuijl girls and her mother teasesher about being an old maid. Third, shes just turnedtwenty-four, and that matters a great deal to Bep.Mother said it would have been better if Bep had simplyhad an affair with Bertus. I dont know, I feel sorry for Bepand can understand her loneliness. In any case, they can getmarried only after the war, since Bertus is in hiding, or atany rate has gone underground. Besides, they dont have apenny to their name and nothing in the way of a hope chest.What a sorry prospect for Bep, for whom we all wish the best.I only hope Bertus improves under her influence, or that Bepfinds another man, one who knows how to appreciate her!Yours, Anne M. FrankTHE SAME DAYTheres something happening every day. This morning Mr.van Hoeven was arrested. He was hiding two Jews in his house.Its a heavy blow for us, not only because those poor Jewsare once again balancing on the edge of an abyss, but alsobecause its terrible for Mr. van Hoeven.The worlds been turned upside down. The most decentpeople are being sent to concentration camps, prisons andlonely cells, while the lowest of the low rule over young andold, rich and poor. One gets caught for black marketeering,another for hiding Jews or other un- fortunate souls. Unlessyoure a Nazi, you dont know whats going to happen to youfrom one day to the next.Mr. van Hoeven is a great loss to us too. Bep cantpossibly lug such huge amounts of potatoes all the way here,
266. nor should she have to, so our only choice is to eat fewer ofthem. Ill tell you what we have in mind, but its certainlynot going to make life here any more agreeable. Mother sayswell skip breakfast, eat hot cereal and bread for lunch andfried potatoes for dinner and, if possible, vegetables orlettuce once or twice a week. Thats all there is. Weregoing to be hungry, but nothings worse than being caught.Yours, Anne M. FrankFRIDAY, MAY 26, 1944My dearest Kitty,At long, long last, I can sit quietly at my table beforethe crack in the window frame and write you everything,everything I want to say.I feel more miserable than I have in months. Even afterthe break-in I didnt feel so utterly broken, inside and out.On the one hand, theres the news about Mr. van Hoeven, theJewish question (which is discussed in detail by everyone inthe house), the invasion (which is so long in coming), theawful food, the tension, the misera- ble atmosphere, mydisappointment in Peter. On the other hand, theres Bepsengagement, the Pentecost reception, the flowers, Mr.Kuglers birthday, cakes and stories about cabarets, moviesand concerts. That gap, that enormous gap, is always there.One day were laugh- ing at the comical side of life inhiding, and the next day (and there are many such days),were frightened, and the fear, tension and despair can beread on our faces.Miep and Mr. Kugler bear the greatest burden for us, andfor all those in hiding-Miep in everything she does and Mr.Kugler through his enormous responsibthty for the eight ofus, which is sometimes so overwhelming that he can hardlyspeak from the pent-up tension and strain. Mr. Kleiman andBep also take very good care of us, but theyre able to putthe Annex out of their minds, even if its only for a fewhours or a few days. They have their own worries, Mr. Kleimanwith his health and Bep with her engagement, which isntlooking very promising lat the moment. But they also havetheir outings, their visits with friends, their everyday
267. lives as ordinary people, so that the tension is sometimesrelieved, if only for a short while, while ours never is,never has been, not once in the two years weve been here.How much longer will this increasingly oppressive, unbearableweight press I down on us?The drains are clogged again. We cant run the wa- ter, orif we do, only a trickle; we cant flush the toilet, so wehave to use a toilet brush; and weve been putting our dirtywater into a big earthenware jar. We can man- age for today,but what will happen if the plumber cant fix it on his own?The Sanitation Department cant come until Tuesday.Miep sent us a raisin bread with "Happy Pentecost" writtenon top. Its almost as if she were mocking us, since ourmoods and cares are far from "happy."Weve all become more frightened since the van Hoevenbusiness. Once again you hear "shh" from all I sides, andwere doing everything more quietly. The police forced thedoor there; they could just as easily do that here too! Whatwill we do if were ever. . . no, I mustnt write that down.But the question wont let itself be pushed to the back of mymind today; on the contrary, all the fear Ive ever felt islooming before me in all its horror.I had to go downstairs alone at eight this evening to usethe bathroom. There was no one down there, since they wereall listening to the radio. I wanted to be brave, but it washard. I always feel safer upstairs than in that huge, silenthouse; when Im alone with those mysterious muffied soundsfrom upstairs and the honking of horns in the street, I haveto hurry and remind myself where I am to keep from gettingthe shivers.Miep has been acting much nicer toward us since her talkwith Father. But I havent told you about that yet. Miep cameup one afternoon all flushed and asked Father straight out ifwe thought they too were infected with the currentanti-Semitism. Father was stunned and quickly talked her outof the idea, but some of Mieps suspicion has lingered on.Theyre doing more errands for us now and showing more of aninterest in our troubles, though we certainly shouldntbother them with our woes. Oh, theyre such good, noble
268. people!Ive asked myself again and again whether it wouldnt havebeen better if we hadnt gone into hiding, if we were deadnow and didnt have to go through this misery, especially sothat the others could be spared the burden. But we all shrinkfrom this thought. We still love life, we havent yetforgotten the voice of nature, and we keep hoping, hopingfor. . . everything.Let something happen soon, even an air raid. Nothing canbe more crushing than this anxiety. Let the end come, howevercruel; at least then well know whether we are to be thevictors or the vanquished.Yours, Anne M. FrankWEDNESDAY, MAY 31, 1944Dearest Kitty,Saturday, Sunday, Monday and Tuesday it was too hot tohold my fountain pen, which is why I couldnt write to you.Friday the drains were clogged, Saturday they were fixed.Mrs. Kleiman came for a visit in the afternoon and told us alot about Jopiej she and Jacque van Maarsen are in the samehockey club. Sunday Bep dropped by to make sure there hadntbeen a break-in and stayed for breakfast. Monday (a holidaybecause of Pentecost), Mr. Gies served as the Annex watchman,and Tuesday we were finally allowed to open the windows.Weve seldom had a Pentecost weekend that was so beautifuland warm. Or maybe "hot" is a better word. Hot weather ishorrible in the Annex. To give you an idea of the numerouscomplaints, Ill briefly describe these sweltering days.Saturday: "Wonderful, what fantastic weather," we all saidin the morning. "If only it werent quite so hot," we said inthe afternoon, when the windows had to be shut.Sunday: "The heats unbearable, the butters melt- ing,theres not a cool spot anywhere in the house, the breadsdrying out, the milks going sour, the windows cant beopened. We poor outcasts are suffocating while everyone elseis enjoying their Pentecost." (According to Mrs. van D.)
269. Monday: "My feet hurt, I have nothing cool to wear, Icant do the dishes in this heat!" Grumbling from early inthe morning to late at night. It was awful.I cant stand the heat. Im glad the winds come up today,but that the suns still shining.Yours, Anne M. FrankFRIDAY, JUNE 2, 1944 JDear Kitty,"If youre going to the attic, take an umbrella with you,preferably a large one!" This is to protect you from"household showers." Theres a Dutch proverb: "High and dry,safe and sound," but it obviously doesnt apply to wartime(guns!) and to people in hiding (cat box!). Mouschis gotteninto the habit of relieving herself on some newspapers orbetween the cracks in the floor boards, so we have goodreason to fear the splatters and, even worse, the stench. Thenew Moortje in the warehouse has the same problem. Anyonewhos ever had a cat thats not housebroken can imagine thesmells, other than pepper and thyme, that permeate thishouse.I also have a brand-new prescription for gunfire jitters:When the shooting gets loud, proceed to the nearest woodenstaircase. Run up and down a few times, making sure tostumble at least once. What with the scratches and the noiseof running and falling, you wont even be able to hear theshooting, much less worry about it. Yours truly has put thismagic formula to use, with great success!Yours, Anne M. FrankMONDAY, JUNE 5, 1944Dearest Kitty,New problems in the Annex. A quarrel between Dussel andthe Franks over the division of butter. Capitulation on thepart of Dussel. Close friendship between the latter and Mrs.
270. van Daan, flirtations, kisses and friendly little smiles.Dussel is beginning to long for female companionship.The van Daans dont see why we should bake a spice cakefor Mr. Kuglers birthday when we cant have one ourselves.All very petty. Mood upstairs: bad. Mrs. van D. has a cold.Dussel caught with brewers yeast tablets, while weve gotnone.The Fifth Army has taken Rome. The city neither destroyednor bombed. Great propaganda for Hitler.Very few potatoes and vegetables. One loaf of bread wasmoldy.Scharminkeltje (name of new warehouse cat) cant standpepper. She sleeps in the cat box and does her business inthe wood shavings. Impossible to keep her.Bad weather. Continuous bombing of Pas de Calais and thewest coast of France.No one buying dollars. Gold even less interesting.The bottom of our black moneybox is in sight. What are wegoing to live on next month?Yours, Anne M. FrankTUESDAY, JUNE 6, 1944My dearest Kitty,"This is D Day," the BBC announced at twelve."This is the day." The invasion has begun!This morning at eight the British reported heavy bombingof Calais, Boulogne, Le Havre and Cherbourg, as well as Pasde Calais (as usual). Further, as a precautionary measure forthose in the occupied territories, everyone living within azone of twenty miles from the coast was warned to prepare forbombardments. Where possible, the British will drop pamphletsan hour ahead of time.
271. According to the German news, British paratroopers havelanded on the coast of France. "British landing craft areengaged in combat with German naval units," according to theBBC.Conclusion reached by the Annex while breakfasting atnine: this is a trial landing, like the one two years ago inDieppe.BBC broadcast in German, Dutch, French and other languagesat ten: The invasion has begun! So this is the "real"invasion. BBC broadcast in German at eleven: speech bySupreme Commander General Dwight Eisenhower.BBC broadcast in English: "This is 0 Day." GeneralEisenhower said to the French people: "Stiff fighting willcome now, but after this the victory. The year 1944 is theyear of complete victory. Good luck!"BBC broadcast in English at one: 11,000 planes areshuttling back and forth or standing by to land troops andbomb behind enemy lines; 4,000 landing craft and small boatsare continually arriving in the area between Cher- bourg andLe Havre. English and American troops are already engaged inheavy combat. Speeches by Gerbrandy, the Prime Minister ofBelgium, King Haakon of Norway, de Gaulle of France, the Kingof England and, last but not least, Churchill.A huge commotion in the Annex! Is this really thebeginning of the long-awaited liberation? The liberationweve all talked so much about, which still seems too good,too much of a fairy tale ever to come true? Will this year,1944, bring us victory? We dont know yet. But where thereshope, theres life. It fills us with fresh courage and makesus strong again. Well need to be brave to endure the manyfears and hardships and the suffering yet to come. Its now amatter of remaining calm and steadfast, of gritting our teethand keeping a stiff upper lip! France, Russia, Italy, andeven Germany, can cry out in agony, but we dont yet havethat right!Oh, Kitty, the best part about the invasion is that I havethe feeling that friends are on the way. Those terrible
272. Germans have oppressed and threatened us for so long that thethought of friends and salvation means everything to us! Nowits not just the Jews, but Holland and all of occupiedEurope. Maybe, Margot says, I can even go back to school inOctober or September.Yours, Anne M. FrankP.S. Ill keep you informed of the latest news!This morning and last night, dummies made of straw andrubber were dropped from the air behind German lines, andthey exploded the minute they hit the ground. Manyparatroopers, their faces blackened so they couldnt be seenin the dark, landed as well. The French coast was bombardedwith 5,500 tons of bombs during the night, and then, at sixin the morning, the first landing craft came ashore. Todaythere were 20,000 airplanes in action. The German coastalbatteries were destroyed even before the landing; a smallbridgehead has already been formed. Everythings going well,despite the bad weather. The army and the people are "onewill and one hope."FRIDAY, JUNE 9, 1944Dearest Kitty,Great news of the invasion! The Allies have taken Bayeux,a village on the coast of France, and are now fighting forCaen. Theyre clearly intending to cut off the peninsulawhere Cherbourg is located. Every evening the warcorrespondents report on the difficulties, the courage andthe fighting spirit of the army. To get their stories, theypull off the most amazing feats. A few of the wounded who arealready back in England also spoke on the radio. Despite themiserable weather, the planes are flying dthgently back andforth. We heard over the BBC that Churchill wanted to landalong with the troops on D Day, but Eisenhower and the othergenerals managed to talk him out of it. Just imagine, so muchcourage for such an old man he must be at least seventy!The excitement here has died down somewhat; still, wereall hoping that the war will finally be over by the end ofthe year. Its about time! Mrs. van Daans constant griping
273. is unbearable; now that she can no longer drive us crazy withthe invasion, she moans and groans all day about the badweather. If only we could plunk her down in the loft in abucket of cold water!Everyone in the Annex except Mr. van Daan and Peter hasread the Hunaarian Rhapsody trilogy, a biography of thecomposer, piano virtuoso and child prodigy Franz Liszt. Itsvery interesting, though in my opinion theres a bit too muchemphasis on women; Liszt was not only the greatest and mostfamous pianist of his time, he was also the biggestwomanizer, even at the age of seventy. He had an affair withCountess Marie d Agoult, Princess Carolyne Sayn-Wittgenstein, the dancer Lola Montez, the pianist AgnesKingworth, the pianist Sophie Menter, the Circassian princessOlga Janina, Baroness Olga Meyen- dorff, actress Lillawhats-her-name, etc., etc., and theres no end to it. Thoseparts of the book dealing with music and the other arts aremuch more interesting. Some of the people mentioned areSchumann, Clara Wieck, Hector Berlioz, Johannes Brahms,Beethoven, Joachim, Richard Wagner, Hans von Bulow, AntonRubinstein, Frederic Chopin, Victor Hugo, Honore de Balzac,Hiller, Hummel, Czerny, Rossini, Cherubini, Paganini,Mendels- sohn, etc., etc.Liszt appears to have been a decent man, very generous andmodest, though exceptionally vain. He helped others, put artabove all else, was extremely fond of cognac and women,couldnt bear the sight of tears, was a gentleman, couldntrefuse anyone a favor, wasnt interested in money and caredabout religious freedom and the world.Yours, Anne M. Frank314 ANNE FRANKTUESDAY, JUNE 13, 1944Dearest Kit,Another birthday has gone by, so Im now fifteen. Ireceived quite a few gifts: Springers five-volume arthistory book, a set of underwear, two belts, a handkerchief,two jars of yogurt, a jar of jam, two honey cookies (small),
274. a botany book from Father and Mother, a gold bracelet fromMargot, a sticker album from the van Daans, Biomalt and sweetpeas from Dussel, candy from Miep, candy and notebooks fromBep, and the high point: the book Maria Theresa and threeslices of full-cream cheese from Mr. Kugler. Peter gave me alovely bouquet of peonies; the poor boy had put a lot ofeffort into finding a present, but nothing quite worked out.The invasion is still going splendidly, in spite of themiserable weather -- pouring rains, gale winds and highseas.Yesterday Churchill, Smuts, Eisenhower and Arnold visitedthe French villages that the British have captured andliberated. Churchill was on a torpedo boat that shelled thecoast. Uke many men, he doesnt seem to know what fear is --an enviable trait!From our position here in Fort Annex, its difficult togauge the mood of the Dutch. No doubt many people are gladthe idle (!) British have finally rolled up their sleeves andgotten down to work. Those who keep claim- ing they dontwant to be occupied by the British dont realize how unfairtheyre being. Their line of reasoning boils down to this:England must fight, struggle and sacri- fice its sons toliberate Holland and the other occupied countries. After thatthe British shouldnt remain in Hol- land: they should offertheir most abject apologies to all the occupied countries,restore the Dutch East Indies to its rightful owner and thenreturn, weakened and impoverished, to England. What a bunchof idiots. And yet, as Ive already said, many Dutch peoplecan be counted among their ranks. What would have become ofHolland and its neighbors if England had signed a peacetreaty with Germany, as its had ample opportunity to do?Holland would have become German, and that would have beenthe end of that!All those Dutch people who still look down on the British,scoff at England and its government of old fogies, call theEnglish cowards, yet hate the Germans, should be given a goodshaking, the way youd plump up a pillow. Maybe that wouldstraighten out their jumbled brains!Wishes, thoughts, accusations and reproaches are swirling
275. around in my head. Im not really as conceited as many peoplethink; I know my various faults and shortcomings better thananyone else, but theres one difference: I also know that Iwant to change, will change and already have changed greatly!Why is it, I often ask myself, that everyone still thinksIm so pushy and such a know-it-all? Am I really so arrogant?Am I the one whos so arrogant, or are they? It sounds crazy,I know, but Im not going to cross out that last sentence,because its not as crazy as it seems. Mrs. van Daan andDussel, my two chief accusers, are known to be totallyunintelligent and, not to put too fine a point on it, justplain "stupid"! Stupid people usually cant bear it whenothers do something better than they do; the best examples ofthis are those two dummies, Mrs. van Daan and Dussel. Mrs.van D. thinks Im stupid because I dont suffer so much fromthis ailment as she does, she thinks Im pushy because sheseven pushier, she thinks my dresses are too short becausehers are even shorter, and she thinks Im such a know-it-allbecause she talks twice as much as I do about topics sheknows nothing about. The same goes for Dussel. But one of myfavorite sayings is "Where theres smoke theres fire," and Ireadily admit Im a know-it-all.Whats so difficult about my personality is that I scoldand curse myself much more than anyone else does; if Motheradds her advice, the pile of sermons becomes so thick that Idespair of ever getting through them. Then I talk back andstart contradicting everyone until the old famthar Annerefrain inevitably crops up again: "No one understands me!"This phrase is part of me, and as unlikely as it may seem,theres a kernel of truth in it. Sometimes Im so deeplyburied under self-reproaches that I long for a word ofcomfort to help me dig myself out again. If only I hadsomeone who took my feelings seriously. Alas, I havent yetfound that person, so the search must go on.I know youre wondering about Peter, arent you, Kit? Itstrue, Peter loves me, not as a girlfriend, but as a friend.His affection grows day by day, but some mysterious force isholding us back, and I dont know what it is.Sometimes I think my terrible longing for him was
276. overexaggerated. But thats not true, because if Im unableto go to his room for a day or two, I long for him asdesperately as I ever did. Peter is kind and good, and yet Icant deny that hes disappointed me in many ways. Iespecially dont care for his dislike of religion, his tableconversations and various things of that nature. Still, Imfirmly convinced that well stick to our agreement never toquarrel. Peter is peace-loving, tolerant and extremelyeasygoing. He lets me say a lot of things to him that hednever accept from his mother. Hes making a determined effortto remove the blots from his copybook and keep his affairs inorder. Yet why does he hide his innermost self and neverallow me access? Of course, hes much more closed than I am,but I know from experience (even though Im constantly beingaccused of knowing all there is to know in theory, but not inpractice) that in time, even the most uncommunicative typeswill long as much, or even more, for someone to confide in.Peter and I have both spent our contemplative years in theAnnex. We often discuss the future, the past and the present,but as Ive already told you, I miss the real thing, and yetI know it exists!Is it because I havent been outdoors for so long thatIve become so smitten with nature? I remember a time when amagnificent blue sky, chirping birds, moonlight and buddingblossoms wouldnt have captivated me. Things have changedsince I came here. One night during the Pentecost holiday,for instance, when it was so hot, I struggled to keep my eyesopen until eleven-thirty so I could get a good look at themoon, all on my own for once. Alas, my sacrifice was in vain,since there was too much glare and I couldnt risk opening awindow. An- other time, several months ago, I happened to beupstairs one night when the window was open. I didnt go backdown until it had to be closed again. The dark, rainyevening, the wind, the racing clouds, had me spellbound; itwas the first time in a year and a half that Id seen thenight face-to-face. After that evening my longing to see itagain was even greater than my fear of burglars, a darkrat-infested house or robberies. I went downstairs all bymyself and looked out the windows in the kitchen and privateoffice. Many people think nature is beautiful, many peoplesleep from time to time under the starry sky, and many peoplein hospitals and prisons long for the day when theyll be
277. free to enjoy what nature has to offer. But few are asisolated and cut off as we are from dle joys of nature, whichcan be shared by rich and poor alike.Its not just my imagination -- looking at dle sky, dleclouds, dle moon and dle stars really does make me feel calmand hopeful. Its much better medicine than valerian orbromide. Nature makes me feel humble and ready to face everyblow with courage!As luck would have it, Im only able -- except for a fewrare occasions-to view nature through dusty curtains tackedover dirt-caked windows; it takes dle pleasure out oflooking. Nature is dle one thing for which dlere is nosubstitute!One of dle many questions that have often bodlered me iswhy women have been, and still are, thought to be so inferiorto men. Its easy to say its unfair, but thats not enoughfor me; Id really like to know the reason for this greatinjustice!Men presumably dominated women from the very beginningbecause of their greater physical strength; its men who earna living, beget children and do as they please. . . Untilrecently, women silently went along willi this, which wasstupid, since the longer its kept up, the more deeplyentrenched it becomes. Fortunately, education, work andprogress have opened womens eyes. In many countries theyvebeen granted equal rights; many people, mainly women, butalso men, now realize how wrong it was to tolerate this stateof affairs for so long. Modern women want the right to becompletely independent!But thats not all. Women should be respected as well!Generally speaking, men are held in great esteem in all partsofthe world, so why shouldnt women have their share?Soldiers and war heroes are honored and commemorated,explorers are granted immortal fame, martyrs are revered, buthow many people look upon women too as soldiers?In the book Soldiers on the Home Front I was greatlystruck by the fact that in childbirth alone, women commonlysuffer more pain, illness and misery than any war hero ever
278. does. And whats her reward for enduring all that pain? Shegets pushed aside when shes disfigured by birth, herchildren soon leave, her beauty is gone. Women, who struggleand suffer pain to ensure the con- tinuation of the humanrace, make much tougher and more courageous soldiers than allthose big-mouthed freedom-fighting heroes put together!I dont mean to imply that women should stop havingchildren; on the contrary, nature intended them to, andthats the way it should be. What I condemn are our system ofvalues and the men who dont acknowledge how great,difficult, but ultimately beautiful womens share in societyis.I agree completely with Paul de Kruif, the author of thisbook, when he says that men must learn that birth is nolonger thought of as inevitable and unavoidable in thoseparts of the world we consider civthzed. Its easy for men totalk -- they dont and never will have to bear the woes thatwomen do!I believe that in the course of the next century thenotion that its a womans duty to have children will changeand make way for the respect and admiration of all women, whobear their burdens without complaint or a lot of pompouswords!Yours, Anne M. FrankFRIDAY, JUNE 16, 1944Dearest Kitty,New problems: Mrs. van D. is at her wits end. Shestalking about getting shot, being thrown in prison, beinghanged and suicide. Shes jealous that Peter confides in meand not in her, offended that Dussel doesnt re- spondsufficiently to her flirtations and afraid her husbandsgoing to squander all the fur-coat money on to- bacco. Shequarrels, curses, cries, feels sorry for herself, laughs andstarts allover again.What on earth can you do with such a silly, snivelingspecimen of humanity? Nobody takes her seriously, she has no
279. strength of character, she complains to one and all, and youshould see how she walks around: von hinten Lyzeum, yon vorneMuseum.* [Acts like a schoolgirl, looks like a frump.] Evenworse, Peters becoming insolent, Mr. van Daan irritable andMother cynical. Yes, everyones in quite a state! Theresonly one rule you need to remember: laugh at everything andforget everybody else! It sounds egotistical, but itsactually the only cure for those suffering from self-pity.Mr. Kuglers supposed to spend four weeks in Alkmaar on awork detail. Hes trying to get out of it with a doctorscertificate and a letter from Opekta. Mr. Kleimans hopinghis stomach will be operated on soon. Starting at eleven lastnight, all private phones were cut off.Yours, Anne M. FrankFRIDAY, JUNE 23, 1944Dearest Kitty,Nothing special going on here. The British have beguntheir all-out attack on Cherbourg. According to Pim and Mr.van Oaan, were sure to be liberated before October 10. TheRussians are taking part in the cam- paign; yesterday theystarted their offensive near Vitebsk, exactly three years tothe day that the Germans invaded Russia.Beps spirits have sunk lower than ever. Were nearly outof potatoes; from now on, were going to count them out foreach person, then everyone can do what they want with them.Starting Monday, Mieps taking a week of vacation. Mr.Kleimans doctors havent found anything on the X rays. Hestorn between having an operation and letting matters taketheir course.Yours, Anne M. FrankTUESDAY, JUNE 27, 1944My dearest Kitty,The mood has changed, everythings going enormously well.Cherbourg, Vitebsk and Zhlobin fell today. Theyre sure to
280. have captured lots of men and equipment. Five German generalswere killed near Cherbourg and two taken captive. Now thattheyve got a harbor, the British can bring whatever theywant on shore. The whole Cotentin Peninsula has been capturedjust three weeks after the invasion! What a feat!In the three weeks since D Day there hasnt been a daywithout rain and storms, neither here nor in France, but thisbad luck hasnt kept the British and the Americans fromdisplaying their might. And how! Of course, the Germans havelaunched their wonder weapon, but a little firecracker likethat wont hardly make a dent, except maybe minor damage inEngland and screaming headlines in the Kraut newspapers.Anyway, when they realize in "Krautland" that the Bolsheviksreally are getting closer, theyll be shaking in their boots.All German women who arent working for the military arebeing evacuated, together with their children, from thecoastal regions to the provinces of Groningen, Friesland andGelderland. Mussert* [* The leader of the Dutch NationalSocialist (Nazi) Party] has announced that if the invasionreaches Holland, hell enlist. Is that fat pig planning tofight? He could have done that in Russia long before now.Finland turned down a peace offer some time ago, and now thenegotiations have been broken off again. Those numbskulls,theyll be sorry!How far do you think well be on July 27?Yours, Anne M. FrankFRIDAY, JUNE 30, 1944Dearest Kitty,Bad weather from one at a stretch to the thirty June*[Annes English.] Dont I say that well? Oh yes, I alreadyknow a little English; just to prove it Im reading An IdealHusband with the help of a dictionary! Wars goingwonderfully: Bobruysk, Mogilev and Orsha have fallen, lots ofprisoners.Everythings all right here. Spirits are improving, oursuperoptimists are triumphant, the van Daans are doing
281. disappearing acts with the sugar, Bep s changed her hair,and Miep has a week off. Thats the latest news!Ive been having really ghastly root-canal work done onone of my front teeth. Its been terribly painful. It was sobad Dussel thought I was going to faint, and I nearly did.Mrs. van D. promptly got a toothache as well!Yours, Anne M. FrankP.S. Weve heard from Basel that Bernd* [Cousin Bernhard(Buddy) Elias]. played the part of the innkeeper in Minna vonBarnhelm. He has "artistic leanings," says Mother.THURSDAY, JULY 6, 1944Dearest Kitty,My blood runs cold when Peter talks about becoming acriminal or a speculator; of course, hes joking, but I stillhave the feeling hes afraid of his own weakness.Margot and Peter are always saying to me, "If I had yourspunk and your strength, if I had your drive and unflaggingenergy, could. . .Is it really such an admirable trait not to let myself beinfluenced by others? Am I right in following my ownconscience?To be honest, I cant imagine how anyone could say "Imweak" and then stay that way. If you know that aboutyourself, why not fight it, why not develop your character?Their answer has always been: "Because its much easier notto!" This reply leaves me feeling rather discouraged. Easy?Does that mean a life of deceit and laziness is easy too? Ohno, that cant be true. It cant be true that people are soreadily tempted by ease. . . and money. Ive given a lot ofthought to what my answer should be, to how I should getPeter to believe in himself and, most of all, to changehimself for the better. I dont know whether Im on the righttrack.Ive often imagined how nice it would be if someone were
282. to confide everything to me. But now that its reached thatpoint, I realize how difficult it is to put yourself insomeope elses shoes and find the right answer. Especiallysince "easy" and "money" are new and com- pletely alienconcepts to me.Peters beginning to lean on me and I dont want that, notunder any circumstances. Its hard enough standing on yourown two feet, but when you also have to remain true to yourcharacter and soul, its harder still.Ive been drifting around at sea, have spent dayssearching for an effective antidote to that terrible word"easy." How can I make it clear to him that, while it mayseem easy and wonderful, it will drag him down to the depths,to a place where hell no longer find friends, support orbeauty, so far down that he may never rise to the surfaceagain?Were all alive, but we dont know why or what for; wereall searching for happiness; were all leading lives that aredifferent and yet the same. We three have been raised in goodfamthes, we have the opportunity to get an education and makesomething of ourselves. We have many reasons to hope forgreat happiness, but. . . we have to earn it. And thatssomething you cant achieve by taking the easy way out.Earning happiness means doing good and working, notspeculating and being lazy. Laziness may look inviting, butonly work gives you true satisfaction.I cant understand people who dont like to work, but thatisnt Peters problem either. He just doesnt have a goal,plus he thinks hes too stupid and inferior to ever achieveanything. Poor boy, hes never known how it feels to makesomeone else happy, and Im afraid I cant teach him. Heisnt religious, scoffs at Jesus Christ and takes the Lordsname in vain, and though Im not Orthodox either, it hurts meevery time to see him so lonely, so scornful, so wretched.People who are religious should be glad, since noteveryone is blessed with the ability to believe in a higherorder. You dont even have to live in fear of eternalpunishment; the concepts of purgatory, heaven and hell aredifficult for many people to accept, yet religion itself, any
283. religion, keeps a person on the right path. Not the fear ofGod, but upholding your own sense of honor and obeying yourown conscience. How noble and good everyone could be if, atthe end of each day, they were to review their own behaviorand weigh up the rights and wrongs. They would automaticallytry to do better at the start of each new day and, after awhile, would certainly accomplish a great deal. Everyone iswelcome to this prescription; it costs nothing and isdefinitely useful. Those who dont know will have to find outby experience that "a quiet conscience gives you strength!"Yours, Anne M. FrankSATURDAY, JULY 8, 1944Dearest Kitty,Mr. Broks was in Beverwijk and managed to get hold ofstrawberries at the produce auction. They arrived here dustyand full of sand, but in large quantities. No less thantwenty-four crates for the office and us. That very sameevening we canned the first six jars and made eight jars ofjam. The next morning Miep started making jam for the office.At twelve-thirty the outside door was locked, crates werelugged into the kitchen, with Peter, Father and Mr. van Daanstumbling up the stairs. Anne got hot water from the waterheater, Margot"",went for a bucket, all hands on deck! With afunny feeling in my stomach, I entered the overcrowded officekitchen. Miep, Bep, Mr. Kleiman, Jan, Father, Peter: theAnnex contingent and the Supply Corps all mixed up together,and that in the middle of the day! Curtains and windows open,loud voices, banging doors -- I was trembling withexcitement. I kept thinking, "Are we really in hiding?" Thismust be how it feels when you can finally go out into theworld again. The pan was full, so I dashed upstairs, wherethe rest of the family was hulling strawberries around thekitchen table. At least thats what they were supposed to bedoing, but more was going into their mouths than into thebuckets. They were bound to need another bucket soon. Peterwent back downstairs, but then the doorbell rang twice.Leaving the bucket where it was, Peter raced upstairs andshut the bookcase behind him. We sat kicking our heelsimpatiently; the strawberries were waiting to be rinsed, but
284. we stuck to the house rule: "No running water when strangersare downstairs -- they might hear the drains."Jan came up at one to tell us it had been the mail- man.Peter hurried downstairs again. Ding-dong. . . the doorbell,about-face. I listened to hear if anyone was coming, standingfirst at the bookcase, then at the top of the stairs. FinallyPeter and I leaned over the banister, straining our ears likea couple of burglars to hear the sounds from downstairs. Nounfamthar voices. Peter tip- toed halfway down the stairs andcalled out, "Bep!"Once more: "Bep!" His voice was drowned out by the racketin the kitchen. So he ran down to the kitchen while Inervously kept watch from above. "Go upstairs at once, Peter,the accountants here, youve got to leave!" It was Mr.Kuglers voice. Sighing, Peter came upstairs and closed thebookcase.Mr. Kugler finally came up at one-thirty. "My gosh, thewhole worlds turned to strawberries. I had strawber- riesfor breakfast, Jans having diem for lunch, Kleimans eatingthem as a snack, Mieps bothng them, Beps hulling them, andI can smell them everywhere I go. I come upstairs to get awayfrom all that red and what do I see? People washingstrawberries!"The rest of the strawberries were canned. That evening:two jars came unsealed. Father quickly turned them into jam.The next morning: two more lids popped up; and thatafternoon: four lids. Mr. van Daan hadnt gotten the jars hotenough when he was sterthzing them, so Father ended up makingjam every evening. We ate hot cereal with strawberries,buttermilk with strawberries, bread with strawberries,strawberries for dessert, straw- berries with sugar,strawberries with sand. For two days there was nothing butstrawberries, strawberries, strawberries, and then our supplywas either exhausted or in jars, safely under lock and key."Hey, Anne," Margot called out one day, "Mrs. van Hoevenhas let us have some peas, twenty pounds!""Thats nice of her," I replied. And it certainly was, butits so much work. . . ugh!
285. "On Saturday, youve aJI got to shell peas," Motherannounced at the table.And sure enough, this morning after breakfast our biggestenamel pan appeared on the table, filled to the brim withpeas. If you think shelling peas is boring work, you ought totry removing the inner linings. I dont think many peoplerealize that once youve pulled out the linings, the pods aresoft, delicious and rich in vitamins. But an even greateradvantage is that you get nearly three times as much as whenyou eat just the peas.Stripping pods is a precise and meticulous job that mightbe suited to pedantic dentists or finicky spice experts, butits a horror for an impatient teenager like me. We startedwork at nine-thirty; I sat down at ten-thirty, got Up againat eleven, sat down again at eleven-thirty. My ears werehumming with the following refrain: snap the end, strip thepod, pull the string, pod in the pan, snap the end, strip thepod, pull the string, pod in the pan, etc., etc. My eyes wereswimming: green, green, worm, string, rotten pod, green,green. To fight the boredom and have something to do, Ichattered all morn- ing, saying whatever came into my headand making everyone laugh. The monotony was killing me. Everystring I pulled made me more certain that I never, ever, wantto be just a housewife!At twelve we finally ate breakfast, but from twelve-thirtyto one-fifteen we had to strip pods again. When I stopped, Ifelt a bit seasick, and so did the others. I napped untilfour, still in a daze because of those wretched peas.Yours, Anne M. FrankSATURDAY, JULY 15,1944Dearest Kitty,Weve received a book from the library with thechallenging title What Do You Think of the Modern Young Girl?Id like to discuss this subject today.The writer criticizes "todays youth" from head to toe,
286. though without dismissing them all as "hopeless cases." Onthe contrary, she believes they have it within their power tobuild a bigger, better and more beautiful world, but thatthey occupy themselves with superficial things, withoutgiving a thought to true beauty. In some passages I had thestrong feeling that the writer was directing her disapprovalat me, which is why I finally want to bare my soul to you anddefend myself against this attack.I have one outstanding character trait that must beobvious to anyone whos known me for any length of time: Ihave a great deal of self-knowledge. In everything I do, Ican watch myself as if I were a stranger. I can stand cacross from the everyday Anne and, without being biased ormaking excuses, watch what shes doing, both the good and thebad. This self-awareness never leaves me, and every time Iopen my mouth, I think, "You should have said thatdifferently" or "Thats fine the way it is." I condemn myselfin so many ways that Im beginning to realize the truth ofFathers adage: "Every child has to raise itself." Parentscan only advise their children or point them in the rightdirection. Ultimately, people shape their own characters. Inaddition, I face life with an extraordinary amount ofcourage. I feel so strong and capable of bearing burdens, soyoung and free! When I first realized this, I was glad,because it means I can more easily withstand the blows lifehas in store.But Ive talked about these things so often. Now Id liketo turn to the chapter "Father and Mother Dont UnderstandMe." My parents have always spoiled me rotten, treated mekindly, defended me against the van Daans and done all thatparents can. And yet for the longest time Ive felt extremelylonely, left out, neglected and misunderstood. Father dideverything he could to curb my rebellious spirit, but it wasno use. Ive cured myself by holding my behavior up to thelight and looking at what I was doing wrong.Why didnt Father support me in my struggle? Why did hefall short when he tried to offer me a helping hand? Theanswer is: he used the wrong methods. He always talked to meas if I were a child going through a difficult phase. Itsounds crazy, since Fathers the only one whos given me asense of confidence and made me feel as if Im a sensible
287. person. But he overlooked one thing: he failed to see thatthis struggle to triumph over my difficulties was moreimportant to me than anything else. I didnt want to hearabout "typical adolescent problems," or "other girls," or"youll grow out of it." I didnt want to be treated the sameas all-the-other-girls, but as Anne-in-her-own-right, and rimdidnt understand that. Besides, I cant confide in anyoneunless they tell me a lot about themselves, and because Iknow very little about him, I cant get on a more intimatefooting. rim always acts like the elderly father who once hadthe same fleeting im- pulses, but who can no longer relate tome as a friend, no matter how hard he tries. As a result,Ive never shared my outlook on life or my long-ponderedtheories with anyone but my diary and, once in a while,Margot. Ive hid any- thing having to do with me from Father,never shared my ideals with him, deliberately alienatedmyself from him.I couldnt have done it any other way. Ive let myself beguided entirely by my feelings. It was egotistical, but Ivedone what was best for my own peace of mind. I would losethat, plus the self-confidence Ive worked so hard toachieve, if I were to be subjected to criticism halfwaythrough the job. It may sound hard-hearted, but I cant takecriticism from rim either, because not only do I never sharemy innermost thoughts with him, but Ive pushed him evenfurther away by being irritable.This is a point I think about quite often: why is it thatrim annoys me so much sometimes? I can hardly bear to havehim tutor me, and his affection seems forced. I want to beleft alone, and Id rather he ignored me for a while untilIm more sure of myself when Im talking to him! Im stilltorn with guilt about the mean letter I wrote him when I wasso upset. Oh, its hard to be strong and brave in every way!. . .Still, this hasnt been my greatest disappointment. No, Ithink about Peter much more than I do Father. I know verywell that he was my conquest, and not the other way around. Icreated an image of him in my mind, pictured him as a quiet,sweet, sensitive boy badly in need of friendship and love! Ineeded to pour out my heart to a living person. I wanted a
288. friend who would help me find my way again. I accomplishedwhat I set out to do and drew him, slowly but surely, towardme. When I finally got him to be my friend, it automaticallydeveloped into an intimacy that, when I think about it now,seems outrageous. We talked about the most private things,but we havent yet touched upon the things closest to myheart. I still cant make head or tail of Peter. Is hesuperficial, or is it shyness that holds him back, even withme? But putting all that aside, I made one mistake: I usedintimacy to get closer to him, and in doing so, I ruled outother forms of friendship. He longs to be loved, and I cansee hes beginning to like me more with each passing day. Ourtime together leaves him feeling satisfied, but just makes mewant to start all over again. I never broach the subjects Ilong to bring out into the open. I forced Peter, more than herealizes, to get close to me, and now hes holding on fordear life. I honestly dont see any effective way of shakinghim off and getting him back on his own two feet. I soonrealized he could never be a kindred spirit, but still triedto help him break out of his narrow world and expand hisyouthful horizons."Deep down, the young are lonelier than the old." I readthis in a book somewhere and its stuck in my mind. As far asI can tell, its true.So if youre wondering whether its harder for the adultshere than for the children, the answer is no, its certainlynot. Older people have an opinion about everything and aresure of themselves and their actions. Its twice as hard forus young people to hold on to our opinions at a time whenideals are being shattered and destroyed, when the worst sideof human nature predominates, when everyone has come to doubttruth, justice and God.Anyone who claims that the older folks have a moredifficult time in the Annex doesnt realize that the problemshave a far greater impact on us. Were much too young to dealwith these problems, but they keep thrusting themselves on usuntil, finally, were forced to think up a solution, thoughmost of the time our solutions crumble when faced with thefacts. Its difficult in times like these: ideals, dreams andcherished hopes rise within us, only to be crushed by grimreality. Its a wonder I havent abandoned all my ideals,
289. they seem so absurd and impractical. Yet I cling to thembecause I still believe, in spite of everything, that peopleare truly good at heart.Its utterly impossible for me to build my life on afoundation of chaos, suffering and death. I see the worldbeing slowly transformed into a wilderness, I hear theapproaching thunder that, one day, will destroy us too, Ifeel the suffering of millions. And yet, when I look up atthe sky, I somehow feel that everything will change for thebetter, that this cruelty too shall end, that peace andtranquthty will return once more. In the meantime, I musthold on to my ideals. Perhaps the day will come when Ill beable to realize them!Yours, Anne M. FrankFRIDAY, JULY 21, 1944Dearest Kitty,Im finally getting optimistic. Now, at last, things aregoing well! They really are! Great news! An assassinationattempt has been made on Hitlers life, and for once not byJewish Communists or English capitalists, but by a Germangeneral whos not only a count, but young as well. The Fuhrerowes his life to "Divine Providence": he escaped,unfortunately, with only a few minor burns and scratches. Anumber of the officers and generals who were nearby werekilled or wounded. The head of the conspiracy has been shot.This is the best proof weve had so far that many officersand generals are fed up with the war and would like to seeHitler sink into a bottomless pit, so they can establish amthtary dictatorship, make peace with the Allies, rearmthemselves and, after a few decades, start a new war. PerhapsProvidence is deliberately biding its time getting rid ofHider, since its much easier, and cheaper, for the Allies tolet the impeccable Germans kill each other off. Its lesswork for the Russians and the British, and it allows them tostart rebuilding their own cities all that much sooner. Butwe havent reached that point yet, and Id hate to anticipatethe glorious event. Still, youve probably noticed that Imtelling the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.
290. For once, Im not rattling on about high ideals.Furthermore, Hitler has been so kind as to announce to hisloyal, devoted people that as of today all mthtary personnelare under orders of the Gestapo, and that any soldier whoknows that one of his superiors was involved in this cowardlyattempt on the Fuhrers life may shoot him on sight!A fine kettle of fish that will be. Little Johnnys feetare sore after a long march and his commanding officer bawlshim out. Johnny grabs his rifle, shouts, "You, you tried tokill the Fuhrer. Take that!" One shot, and the snooty officerwho dared to reprimand him passes into eternal life (or is iteternal death?). Eventually, every time an officer sees asoldier or gives an order, hell be practically wetting hispants, because the soldiers have more say-so than he does.Were you able to follow that, or have I been skipping fromone subject to another again? I cant help it, the prospectof going back to school in October is making me too happy tobe logical! Oh dear, didnt I just get through telling you Ididnt want to anticipate events? Forgive me, Kitty, theydont call me a bundle of contradictions for nothing!Yours, Anne M. FrankTUESDAY, AUGUST 1, 1944Dearest Kitty,"A bundle of contradictions" was the end of my previousletter and is the beginning of this one. Can you please tellme exactly what "a bundle of contradictions" is? What does"contradiction" mean? Like so many words, it can beinterpreted in two ways: a contradiction imposed from withoutand one imposed from within. The former means not acceptingother peoples opinions, always knowing best, having the lastword; in short, all those unpleasant traits for which Imknown. The latter, for which Im not known, is my own secret.As Ive told you many times, Im split in two. One sidecontains my exuberant cheerfulness, my flippancy, my joy inlife and, above all, my abthty to appreciate the lighter sideof things. By that I mean not finding anything wrong with
291. flirtations, a kiss, an embrace, an off-color joke. This sideof me is usually lying in wait to ambush the other one, whichis much purer, deeper and finer. No one knows Annes betterside, and thats why most people cant stand me. Oh, I can bean amusing clown for an afternoon, but after that everyoneshad enough of me to last a month. Actually, Im what aromantic movie is to a profound thinker -- a mere diversion,a comic interlude, something that is soon forgotten: not bad,but not particularly good either. I hate haVing to tell youthis, but why shouldnt I admit it when I know its true? Mylighter, more superficial side will always steal a march onthe deeper side and therefore always win. You cant imaginehow often Ive tried to p:ush away this Anne, which is onlyhalf of what is known as Anne-to beat her down, hide her. Butit doesnt work, and I know why.Im afraid that people who know me as I usually am willdiscover I have another side, a better and finer side. Imafraid theyll mock me, think Im ridiculous and sentimentaland not take me seriously. Im used to not being takenseriously, but only the "lighthearted" Anne is used to it andcan put up with it; the "deeper" Anne is too weak. If I forcethe good Anne into the spotlight for even fifteen minutes,she shuts up like a clam the moment shes called upon tospeak, and lets Anne number one do the talking. Before Irealize it, shes disappeared.So the nice Anne is never seen in company. Shes nevermade a single appearance, though she almost always takes thestage when Im alone. I know exactly how Id like to be, howI am . . . on the inside. But unfortunately Im only likethat with myself. And perhaps thats why-no, Im sure thatsthe reason why -- I think of myself as happy on the insideand other people think Im happy on the outside. Im guidedby the pure Anne within, but on the outside Im nothing but afrolicsome little goat tugging at its tether.As Ive told you, what I say is not what I feel, which iswhy I have a reputation for being boy-crazy as well as aflirt, a smart aleck and a reader of romances. Thehappy-go-lucky Anne laughs, gives a flippant reply, shrugsher shoulders and pretends she doesnt give a darn. The quietAnne reacts in just the opposite way. If Im being completelyhonest, Ill have to admit that it does matter to me, that
292. Im trying very hard to change myself, but that I Im alwaysup against a more powerful enemy.A voice within me is sobbing, "You see, thats whatsbecome of you. Youre surrounded by negative opinions,dismayed looks and mocking faces, people, who dislike you,and all because you dont listen to the ; advice of your ownbetter half." Believe me, Id like ; to listen, but itdoesnt work, because if Im quiet and serious, everyonethinks Im putting on a new act and I have to save myselfwith a joke, and then Im not even talking about my ownfamily, who assume I must be sick, stuff me with aspirins andsedatives, feel my neck and forehead to see if I have atemperature, ask about my bowel movements and berate me forbeing in a bad mood, until I just cant keep it up anymore,because jj when everybody starts hovering over me, I getcross, then sad, and finally end up turning my heart inside gout, the bad part on the outside and the good part on theinside, and keep trying to find a way to become what Id liketo be and what I could be if . . . if only there were noother people in the world.Yours, Anne M. Frank-----------------------ANNES DIARY ENDS HERE.-----------------------AFTERWORDOn the morning of August 4, 1944, sometime between ten andten-thirty, a car pulled up at 263 Prinsengracht. Severalfigures emerged: an SS sergeant, Karl Josef Silberbauer, infull uniform, and at least three Dutch members of theSecurity Police, armed but in civilian clothes. Someone musthave tipped them off.They arrested the eight people hiding in the Annex, aswell as two of their helpers, Victor Kugler and JohannesKleiman -- though not Miep Gies and Elisabeth (Bep)Voskuijl-and took all the valuables and cash they could findin the Annex.
293. After the arrest, Kugler and Kleiman were taken to aprison in Amsterdam. On September 11, 1944, they weretransferred, without benefit of a trial, to a camp inAmersfoort (Holland). Kleiman, because of his poor health,was released on September 18, 1944. He remained in Amsterdamuntil his death in 1959.Kugler managed to escape his imprisonment on March 28,1945, when he and his fellow prisoners were being sent toGermany as forced laborers. He immigrated to Canada in 1955and died in Toronto in 1989.Elisabeth (Bep) Voskuijl Wijk died in Amsterdam in 1983.Miep Santrouschitz Gies is still living in Amsterdam; herhusband Jan died in 1993.Upon their arrest, the eight residents of the Annex werefirst brought to a prison in Amsterdam and then transferredto Westerbork, the transit camp for Jews in the north ofHolland. They were deported on September 3, 1944, in the lasttransport to leave Westerbork, and arrived three days laterin Auschwitz (Poland).Hermann van Pels (van Daan) was, according to thetestimony of Otto Frank, gassed to death in Auschwitz inOctober or November 1944, shortly before the gas chamberswere dismantled.Auguste van Pels (Petronella van Daan) was transportedfrom Auschwitz to Bergen-Belsen, from there to Buchenwald,then to Theresienstadt on April 9, 1945, and apparently toanother concentration camp after that. It is certain that shedid not survive, though the date of her death is unknown.Peter van Pels (van Daan) was forced to take part in theJanuary 16, 1945 "death march" from Auschwitz to Mauthausen(Austria), where he died on May 5, 1945, three days beforethe camp was liberated.Fritz Pfeffer (Albert Dussel) died on December 20, 1944,in the Neuengamme concentration camp, where he had beentransferred from either Buchenwald or Sachsenhausen.
294. Edith Frank died in Auschwitz-Birkenau on January 6, 1945,from hunger and exhaustion.Margot and Anne Frank were transported from Auschwitz atthe end of October and brought to Bergen Belsen, aconcentration camp near Hannover (Germany). The typhusepidemic that broke out in the winter of 1944-1945, as aresult of the horrendous hygenic conditions, killed thousandsof prisoners, including Margot and, a few days later, Anne.She must have died in late February or early March. Thebodies of both girls were probably dumped in Bergen-Belsensmass graves. The camp was liberated by British troops onApril 12, 1945.Otto Frank was the only one of the eight to survive theconcentration camps. After Auschwitz was liberated by Russiantroops, he was repatriated to Amsterdam by way of Odessa andMarseille. He arrived in Amsterdam on June 3, 1945, andstayed there until 1953, when he moved to Basel(Switzerland), where his sister and her family, and later hisbrother, lived. He married Elfriede Markovits Geiringer,originally from Vienna, who had survived Auschwitz and lost ahusband and son in Mauthausen. Until his death on August 19,1980, Otto Frank continued to live in Birsfelden, outsideBasel, where he devoted himself to sharing the message of hisdaughters diary with people all over the world.# # #Doubleday - New York, London, Toronto, Sydney, Auckland(c) 1991 by The Anne Frank-Fonds, Basel, Switzerland(www.annefrank.com)English translation (c) 1995 by Doubleday, a division ofBantam Doubleday Publishing Group, Inc.Printed in the United States of America, March 1995ISBN 0-385-47378-8EOFhttp://www.esnips.com/web/eb00ks