I found “Lasting Ties in Western Europe” (Aug. 31) interesting because I was one of the six Pax fellows who opened that unit in Germany in 1953. As far as I know, only three are still living: Mario Wenger, Melvin Snyder and me. We lived in a shed-like building with an outhouse. There was a Mennonite old folks home in Enkenbach where we ate most of our meals. We had to ask for a little more protein in our diet, as the watered-down soup that worked for the seniors was not quite adequate for our physical work. Blutwurst (blood sausage) added the protein.
We dug all basements and trenches by hand. During the summer of ’53 a new bunch of Pax fellows arrived, so we passed the picks and shovels to them, and those of us with mason experience continued with building.
The floor of the second story was poured concrete. To get it up there, we built a long ramp, and with one person pushing the wheelbarrow and one pulling from the front we almost made it to the top before we ran out of steam. Someone up there grabbed the wheel barrow to help finish the ascent. Nearly one year later I was asked to go to Greece to work in the agricultural program there, so I spent about three and a half years in Pax. Thanks for the article.