Magda's Journey, From Simferopol, The Crimea, Russia to Barons, Alberta, Canada
July 22, 1908 to August 23, 1908
Translated from Estonian to English by Livia Kivisild, September 2004
This is the story of Magda Lik's travels to meet her future husband, Gustav Erdman. This diary was given to my mother, Ellen (Erdman) Johnson, Magda's daughter, upon Magda's death. Many years later my mother gave it to me. It has been my plan to have it translated into English, but I didn't know anyone to do the work. With impetus from Uncle Oscar Erdman, Mother's brother, the translation was completed. This story was edited by Barbara Gullickson.
Barbara (Johnson) Gullickson
© 2004 Barbara (Johnson) Gullickson
This is my first, my longest, my most beautiful and my favourite journey. I set out from The Crimea, the city of Simferopol, crossed the Atlantic Ocean, to North America into Canada, to the settlement of Estonians in Barons in the vicinity of the town of Lethbridge. In 1908, on July 9 th, according to the old style calendar, or July 22 nd according to the new, on a Wednesday evening at 10:15 I left the Simferopol Railway Station with my mother and step-brother. Nearly 30 people came to see us off at the station.
On the last day I had many errands; I went to the cemetery to visit my father's grave for the last time and to say good-bye to him, I visited a few families of friends and went to say good-bye to the old lady where I had been in service for four years. I was sad to leave there, as if it had been my own home, the lady and I both cried. I tried to stay calm and tried not to think that this was my last day in the country where I was born, my last day in company of my parents, my siblings and my friends and that it might be the last time in my life to see them.
I tried to appear happy and I promised to return soon for a visit, which I did
not believe myself. At the station, I waited for the train to arrive so I could begin my journey and I thought more about the happy reunion with my Gustav than about this sad parting. It was also easier to leave because Mother was coming with me. Still I had to think that Mother would soon leave as well.
Wednesday July 22. We found reasonably nice seats in the 3 rd class compartment. We had six pieces of luggage; the basket with my clothes, the bundles of bedding, the food basket, another little basket and my purse. We had quite a bit of money with us, so we had to be careful. One of us stayed awake while the other two slept. My friends who had come to see me off were dear memory. They had all wished me happiness and I began to believe that with so many good wishes, happiness must rally lie ahead. The first night passed peacefully. Before dawn, we passed through the station of Ryko. The train stopped only for four or five minutes.
Thursday July 23. In the morning, we passed lush greenery, till the train stopped in Aleksandrovsk. In this train, along the railroad in the hills were chestnuts, fields of corn and millet, nice fields of oats and barley. We could barely find seats. In addition to us, there were 5 Caucasians who smoked incessantly and the smoke was inside. The next compartment was empty, but we were not allowed to go there since it was reserved for the machinists. Mother could not stand the smoke, and I felt sick as well and became dizzy. We kept walking up and down and looking for places with less smoke. In the evening we saw the Muslims pray.
At 10 o'clock, we arrived at the main station in Volta. It was a large station and there were lots of people, especially labourers waiting for the train. The train was so full, we almost missed it, and we had to pay extra for the ticket, and managed to continue our trip. At 11:30 the train began to move. We had no space to sleep, so a guard let us use his compartment. It was apart from the rest and had a door that could be closed. We were there almost alone and slept peacefully as if at home while the guard dozed on a bench behind the door.
Friday July 24. When we awoke before dawn, the weather was clear and cool. I sat at the table by the window and looked out while eating a cup of raspberries. Then it became hot and dusty. The houses looked poor, low and with roofs of sod. There are many windmills, farther away are gray pointed roofs as of bee hives, on a few higher hills there are clusters of those gray roofs. At 9 o'clock in the morning, we arrived in Kiev. Before entering the city, we crossed the River Dnieper over a large bridge, there were ferries on the river, and the water was murky. Before Kiev, the land was less fertile, there was a lot of sand, the crops looked poor and there were little children outside, a few fields of barley and flax.
Kiev is a large and opulent city, surrounded by woods. Houses are 4-5 stories high, built of brick with tin roofs. The train stopped there for three hours, and we wanted to see at least some of this beautiful city. Since we could not all go, Mother stayed at the station at watch the luggage while my stepbrother, Anton, and I took the electric streetcar and rode half an hour along a handsome wide street across town. We came to a large Russian church with the saints underground. We went in and pure gold shone in our eyes. The cupolas outside are also guilt and sparkle in the sunshine. We bought a candle in the church and a priest came with us to guide us through the passages underground. It was quite dark there, so we lit the candle and followed the priest who pointed out to us which saint was where. We kept descending and the air was foul and humid and made me nauseous, but at the same time it made laugh to think that the Russians would believe their saints were in those boxes; who knows what junk may be in there, because those boxes are covered. Next to some sits a monk, yellow in the face and painfully thin, it is sad to see. This was the Russians' holy place, that I now saw, but it seems to me, that the priests are cheating ignorant people to make money. We were offered a drink of water: it was supposed to be water from a holy source with healing powers. There seemed to b something dishonest here, since the water tasted like ordinary water, no better at all. We walked underground for perhaps 10 minutes before we came up into fresh air, reached the church yard and took the streetcar back to the station.
At 12:15 the train left. Real beauty began as we left Kiev. Immense woods, lovely clusters of birches, tall pines and straight ashes, on the ground, flowers of many colours. We stopped for 3-8 minutes in a small stations and 20 minutes in towns. In one station we ate blueberries and were careful not to make our mouths blue. Red berries on mountain ashes are visible from afar. We passed two airplanes on the ground and then a juniper wood. On a sandy plain was a fortress. Soldiers were driving past it. We stopped in Ivangorod, bought a liter of berries, small and sour. Towards evening there were and more Poles, military everywhere.
Saturday July 25. We slept almost as if at home. The train swings so comfortably that we did not notice as we passed the city of Kovel. When we arrived in Warsaw at 3 o'clock, it was very hot. We had to change stations. It was a few kilometers to the station where the trains left for abroad. We hired a wonderful coach, the seats were all covered with velvet, and drove to the other station. The one horse coachmen all have seats for two passengers, the two horse coachmen had enclosed coaches, there are also one horse hackneys and streetcars. The streets are clean, watered and the houses are large 3-4-5-6 stories high, also large churches and factories. All this we observed while driving from one station to the other.
We left the basket at the station and went looking for a room. We found a room on the ground floor of a five story house, rented out by a Jew. The room itself was nice and cool, but the air was damp. Mother did not even want to go in there at first, but since there was nothing cheaper available so close to the station, we had to accept it. We negotiated for the room for one day. There was shopping to do and we wanted to enquire about the continuation of the journey. I was grateful that God protected us and helped us so far. There was a shower at 6 o'clock, when our window was open and hail the size of a bird's egg fell on the floor. We had planned to stay for the night, but we became suspicious of the Jew in spite of his friendly way of speaking. He insisted on keeping our passports and on our paying in advance. We tried to argue but he insisted, so we became scared and unsure of his intentions toward us. We packed up our belongings and left for the station, having paid him in full. The station is huge and we had to wait a long time.
Sunday, July 26. I awoke at 5 o'clock, after little sleep. A beautiful morning. At 8 o'clock we arrived in the frontier town of Alesandrovo. Guided by porter, we bought tickets to Berlin, exchanged our money for German currency, and settled in a car. They brought our luggage into our fourth class compartment. We had had to hand in our passports at the station and they were returned to us on the train. At 9:15 the train left Aleksandrovo for Germany.
We began to eat and were just in the middle of it when the train stopped in a small German station, Ottlotshin. Here all the officials spoke German. A policeman entered the car, looked at our basket and other belongings and left. We did understand when he asked where we were going, so we replied, 'America'. Then we continued our meal and waited for the train to go on. But we were called off the train. A man explained in poor Russian that he would take us to a place where the doctor could examine our eyes and that we would leave on the next train.
In front of the station, we tied our bundles together and followed our leader. The big basket was left next to the train tracks. They promised to bring it along later. We carried the smaller parcels. The men led us away from the station. In the distance appeared a large building like a barn, surrounded by a board fence topped with barbed wire. The doors were locked. We were scared seeing it from afar, but even more so when we entered. The first thing we saw was general dirt, a lot of people were already in there. Two big rooms were for the people, one little room for the officials. In addition, there were washrooms, a kitchen and the guard's room.
We thought we had fallen into a trap, but after talking with the others, we calmed down. Most of the people were Jewish and Polish, some of whom understood Russian and they explained everything to us. This was a house for travelers who were on their way to America or England through an agency. We had not used an agency and had bought our own tickets, so we should not have been there at all. However, we did not know German and thus could not explain it to the officials. They thought they had us and we thought we would soon be let go. It being Sunday, there were no officials and no one inspected our eyes. We were told to wait until the next day. Some people have had already been there for a week, they had run out of money and had to wait for money from home. We were worried about our basket left on the roadside. It could not be done in Russia, but apparently here no one would touch anything that did not belong to them. It was true. The basket was delivered to us later on. I was afraid and Mother cried and kept asking where we would be taken and what would become of us. I tried to appear brave, but I did not know what would become of us. A bad day indeed.
Last Sunday, I was still at home, took a walk in the woods, and could not have imagined what a hovel I would find myself in today. I still hoped everything would turn out all right; I just have to patient and wait. It is very hot here and the air is stale, but the old guard will not allow us outside, he keeps the doors locked. The men climb the fence whenever they can. The guard goes to the station to meet every train, he serves as an interpreter. We call him 'soul catcher'. He has a big dog as a helper. Whenever there is a knock at the door or someone tries to climb the fence, the dog goes to find his master, sniffs around and scratches behind the door.
Right here in these rooms is where the doctor checks our eyes. There is as much water here as you wish, you can wash yourself, do laundry and cook. There is always a fire in the kitchen; water and firewood are both free of charge. We have to provide our own food, but there is no store. Bread and a few other necessities are sold in the station, but it very expensive although the bread is good and white. Milk is brought in by a woman. We still have enough food left so we bought only bread. Bedding is also free, but old and dirty. Lumpy mattresses are spread on the floor for the night.
There are many Jewish and Polish women with small children. Their husbands are in America and they are on their way to join them. There are also single people, young men who have crossed the border on foot to escape the draft and move to America. We call this building a 'prison' in a big wood. This is how I spend my first Sunday in Germany. What a sad and complicated day it was.
Monday, July 27. I slept as long as I wished, close to mother and Anton is further away. We are half dressed: two rooms are full of people, all asleep on the floor. In the morning, each person drags their own mattress onto the big table in the next room. The caretaker sweeps and washes the floor. The man went out in the morning and left the gate wide open, but the dog is guarding the gate to make sure no one leaves. I do hope we escape today; otherwise our ticket money goes to waste. We washed ourselves in the washroom. It was good. It is easy to get water. Just turn the tap and it keeps running however long. Children let a lot of water run on the floor and then the guard scolds them.
At about noon the doctor arrived with several officials. A woman acts as an interpreter, she speaks Russian, but all the officials speak German. The woman looks like a crook and is extremely unpleasant. The doctor inspected our eyes and found them healthy. An agent started persuading us that it is impossible to travel the way we had planned. Our plan was namely to traverse Germany and France and cross by boat from the French port of Havre to the English city of Southampton, where Gustav was already waiting. Last Monday he had sent a telegram to the Crimea to say that he had arrived, and we left right away. The others were supposed to accompany me as far as England and then return home. But the official keeps explaining that whoever wants to travel to England has to post a deposit of 50 rubles, or if we have a relative who knows us and has lived there for a long time, we would be allowed to go there. We do not have such relatives, and the official kept telling other stories. We said we would see the consul, but the official said the consul was not here. I would travel alone to join Gustav and immediately board the ship and we would travel on together. There was no other alternative according to the official. But it was impossible for me to travel alone, particularly since I did not speak the languages. Mother would not hear of it and we stayed and waited. As we heard later, the official also lied to us saying Southampton is such a small city that the ship does not stop there, when in reality it is a large port and most ships do stop there. We requested a refund for the tickets we had purchased and were promised payment. I wrote Gustav a letter explaining all our mishaps. And also sent a telegram to suggest he request the letter from the post office. I also mentioned the telegram in the letter, hoping that he would receive at least one of the messages. Paper and other writing material is available in the office here, it is also possible to post letters and send telegrams.
Anton went to the station and obtained the refund for the tickets. Now we are told we can leave tomorrow and are glad. We decide they finally understood we are not as stupid as they think. In the evening we are allowed to go to the station. We hear there is a consul in the nearly town of Thorn and we decide to complain to him if we are not allowed to leave. Tuesday July 29 . Officials were here again. They check papers, issue tickets to those leaving and settle financial questions. When we were still not allowed to leave, we threatened to complain to the consul and they replied this place is run on orders of the German Kaiser Wilhelm and agents arrange passage.
We saw after a while that it was a good hiding place for refugees. Those without passports or with false passports were dispatched quickly; those with legal papers were detained longer. The agent suggested Gustav come here, since there was nothing to fear. He assumed Gustav was a political refugee and I told him Gustav was not. But I was nervous about him coming, still I wrote and reassured him there was nothing to fear. I translated the telegram for the official word for word into Russian and he promised to send it himself. Now we are again waiting, not sure whether we will be allowed to leave.
Wednesday, July 29. We are still here. The telegram was returned with a notice 'recipient not there'. But we know Gustav is there, waiting. We think the agent never sent the telegram. We bother the officials every time they come because we want to leave, but they say the police gave orders to bring us here and detain us. They will not say why. We spoke to the police; he said we are being detained by the railroad manager. We asked him and he said it was the police. We asked the police again, and he was silent. So we got nowhere. Our food is running out. We try and eat very little because everything is expensive here.
Thursday July 30. Went and checked on the telegram. Today we were told we could leave and we were excited and happy. Mother wants to return home; I said if things do not improve, I will travel to Tallinn and go into service there until the problem is solved. We went to the woods several times and ate lingonberries, and blueberries, the woods are big. Gunshots can be heard from the direction of the Russian border. No one dares to go deep into the woods alone.
Friday July 31. Nice warm morning. How will this day end? Food is the worst problem. For a week we have had nothing warm to eat. We do drink hot tea. And we sleep fully dressed and not very well because the bedbugs give us no peace. Finally I got a telegram from Gustav; his address had not been correct. Now he had received my letter and knew to ask for the telegrams, and did then get them. He promises to come here, at last everything is beginning to clear up!
Saturday August 1. We got two more telegrams. Gustav cannot come here. We were told to return since we were not allowed to proceed. We were not even allowed to go to the nearest town. In the evening yet another telegram: Gustav is coming after all, now we just have to wait.
Sunday August 2. Already Sunday and we are still here. How many days we have lost sitting here, let it be a lesson not to fall into a trap another time. I read the Bible.
Monday August 3. Went to the woods with Mother and picked little yellow mushrooms, cooked them and ate them for dinner. Did not sleep well because of the bedbugs.Tuesday August 4. Bedbugs still would not let me sleep last night. Gustav did come on the morning or evening train. In the evening at about eleven, people were already asleep but a small ceiling light was still burning. I heard someone enter and turned my eyes to the door. A young man in a white straw hat (boater?) holding a leather traveling bag was looking around in surprise. The guard turned up the light, threw down a mattress next to the door and left. Everything was quiet, but my heart was beating so hard I could barely breathe. I thought I knew who the man was.
Then I saw the man go to his mattress and lie down. I was hoping to myself Mother would fall asleep; then I could go and see whether this was Gustav. Oh, how I did want to see him. We had not seen each other for five years and now we had to meet in such a horrible place. Then Anton talked with the man by the door and he got up and came over. He had taken off his jacket. He kissed me shyly and quickly and I did so wish we could have kissed for a long time. I looked at him in astonishment. Could that be the shy boy I remembered from school? No, this was a grown man and very sensible. So this was the Gustav I was traveling to meet. I was so happy to finally see him, although in a different place than had been planned.
Gustav retrieved his bag and moved into our corner. We had no thought of sleep. We spent the whole night talking. When the official arrived, Gustav spoke to them immediately about tickets. No one forbade us any longer to travel. We were allowed to go wherever we wished Gustav is a wonderful boy, as seen on the first day. How can I ever be worthy of him? In the night we sleep again next to each other in between the others. We shyly stay apart and just gaze into each others' eyes.
Wednesday August 5. In the morning, Gustav bought tickets for second class on the train and second class on the ship and we received tags for our destination. It was a square blue sign with 'Bremen' written on it. We waited for the moment of saying goodbye to Mother for the last time. The doctor examined us cursorily and gave us certificates that we were in good health. We took our luggage to the train. It was to leave at 5 o'clock. Anton had gone to Thorn. Mother came with us to the station. I was really happy to be with Gustav. It eased the sorrow of my parting from Mother. She herself must have suffered terribly at that moment. She stood with one foot on the step into the train and stared wordlessly into my eyes. I can still see that last look in my mind's eye and when I think of it, as I write, tears stream down my face although it is now over a year ago. Gustav put his arm around me, Mother kissed us goodbye. Her look told me what she could not put into words. In her eyes I saw all her motherly love for me. It told me it was the last time, as if we were being parted by death. Whenever I recall this last parting from Mother, I become very sad. Mother must have suffered so much, she tried to compose herself with all the strength she had. We looked back from the train as along as we could see her standing there alone. She had no one to console her at this difficult time.
The two of us traveled on to start our new life and soon forgot the sadness. Soon we reached Thorn where we saw Anton and said goodbye to him.
Thursday August 6. At six in the morning we arrived in Berlin. The train stopped for half an hour, but no one was allowed to leave the train. How big is this city and how splendid! In the train, a man's money had been stolen, the police came to investigate but did not find anything. We carefully kept an eye on our things lest they be stolen too. We read a book, Grains of Gold, that I happened to have with me.
The train left at 2 o'clock. It was a fast train, now there were many people in the compartment. Gustav sang English songs as we stood by the window and looked out. Beautiful fields and houses and gardens flew past or we flew past them. In the evening, children fell asleep on the floor wherever there was space. We dozed in our seats.
At midnight, the train arrived in Bremen. Our luggage was taken away in a closed cart and a man directed us to our lodgings. The city is very quiet and looks clean and big. Displays are in the store windows. We walked quite a distance before we got there. We were a large group of people. Finally we came to a building. Single men were sent across the street, women and families were kept in the building. They wanted to send Gustav away too, but he argued and was allowed to stay. Jews had been separated from Christians already at the station so this building was for Christians only. There were doors on both sides of the great hall. We were sent into a bedroom with people asleep in it. A light was on. There were double beds on two levels
Friday August 7. At 8 o'clock we were called for breakfast and then we could see the building better. It has high ceilings and everything is clean and well built. The washroom was particularly nice, there are sinks on two sides, water can be had by turning the tap, and above the sink is a mirror to comb hair. When we had washed and tidied up, we went into a big dining room. Breakfast was coffee and sandwiches. Everything is free here. There is no charge for accommodation or food.
About 10 o'clock, the doctor came. The doctor stuck a thermometer under each person's arm, looked in each person's mouth. Then he collected the thermometers and another man wrote down the number it was. Afterwards we went downtown, bought tickets for the ship and were asked how much money we had. Then they measured our height and wrote down the colour of our eyes and hair. At 2 o'clock, we returned and had dinner. For the first time in three weeks, I had warm soup, it was potato and barley soup and it tasted so good, and then there was herring, fresh and plump.
After dinner, we went into town again. I bought a belt, two pairs of stockings, half a dozen handkerchiefs and postcards. In addition, we bought several kinds of berries and liquor to take on the ship. We went to the doctor one more time to have our eyes When Gustav took out his English passport, we were free to go immediately without having our eyes looked at. We were pleased everything went so smoothly.
At 7 o'clock tea was served with bread and butter, we ate and after having taken our luggage to the station, went for another walk. The city looked festive in the evening. It was decorated with greenery and multicoloured electric lights. Displays were in the store windows. In front of the houses facing the street were pretty gardens with blooming flowers of all colours. I had battled a head cold for two day and I was losing my voice. We were back in our room by 9:30 and went to sleep.
Saturday August 8. We were called at 8:30. We dressed hurriedly, had tea and left for the station. At the station, we were given free train tickets to the harbour. The train ride to the ship took an hour. We were in a very clean second class compartment with velvet seats.
The ship began to move at 9 o'clock. It was the first time in my life to be on board a ship. The sea was gray, a sad colour. A big crowd had gathered to say farewell to their relatives and wave their handkerchiefs. We had nobody to see us off. I prayed for a good and safe trip for us. The ship's band played when the ship began to move.
We went downstairs to find our cabins. My cabin was for four people, everything was in good shape, linen rack, mirror, water tap, bunk beds. Gustav's cabin was on the other side of the ship and it was for six people. The air was stale in the cabins and I became nauseous. The ship was swaying, it was difficult to walk and I became dizzy. I went into my cabin and threw up. I did not feel like eating and stayed in bed all day. Seating numbers were handed out in the afternoon and we were assigned the second sitting. I tried to eat, but felt too sick. I ate a little later on. I was the only passenger in my cabin, so Gustav spent the evening with me.
Sunday August 9. In the morning the band played a hymn. Bells summoned us for breakfast. I had slept well. It is clear and still, the sea totally smooth and calm and all the people in a good mood. We had a good breakfast, on a card were the names of several dishes and each person could choose what they liked to have. Then we went on deck and listed to other people sing, talked and looked at the water. The sea was beautiful. I thought to myself, it is pleasant to travel like that. Before dinner, refreshments were brought out on deck. We had clear bullion with cheese bread. At 2 o'clock dinner was served. There were several courses, berries and ice cream. Plates were changes several times. Afterwards we were again on deck. At 7:30 we stopped in a French port. Mail was brought on board from a small boat, several bags of letters. We had supper at 8 o'clock, several choices again. In the evening the band and violins played in the dining room.
Monday August 10 to Monday August 17 . I generally slept well and got up late. We had meals three times a day, and at times we played games on the deck, read aloud to each other, and listened to the band in the evenings. Bed linens and towels are changed twice a week. Every morning the beds are made and the cabin tidied.
One day, Sunday, the wind blew Gustav's straw hat into the water. Fortunately he had another one. Sunday, at 10 o'clock a Catholic Mass started on deck. We went and listened. The luxury of first class! Everything is nice in second class, but first class is more beautiful. A mail choir sang during the service.
Tuesday August 18. Preparations are going on for landing. Passengers are standing everywhere with binoculars. There are a lot of ships and boats around. Before dinner, land came in sight. A lovely picture; green shores on either side. The sea becomes gradually narrower and there is a high pillar standing in the water. At around 2:00 o'clock we arrived in New York harbour. Windows are full of people watching. We left the ship and went into a big hall where the customs officer looked through our smaller parcels. The basket and bedding remained in custody of the official. We sent a telegram home and drove to the station along a very dirty street. A huge station and beautifully dressed ladies. Every five minutes a man shouts in a loud voice to announce which train is leaving. Ate a banana and did not like it.
Wednesday August 19. Did not sleep much sitting up. A clear sunny morning. On either side of the car there are velvet seats for two. It is a fast train. On either side there are fields of vegetables. At 7:30 the train stopped. We were on the Canadian border. Went for breakfast on the train and were served by negroes. Now we saw apple orchards and vineyards. It is low land, lush green with much water. We drove past the Niagara River. On the shore of a lake the train stopped. We could see the blue river between high green banks. Coloured wooden houses were visible between the trees. It was a beautiful view. At around 1 o'clock we drove through a tunnel. In one station, as the trains stopped, we saw four cars racing. There was a circular road especially built for this.
Thursday August 20 to Saturday August 22 . We passed through much land, some wild, rough places, some flat land with many fields. On Saturday we went through land which was empty; from time to time we pass a house. I saw two wolves and some gophers. Arrived in Medicine Hat at one in the afternoon. Had dinner at a dining room owned by a relative, bought myself a coat, walked around the town. It was very hot. The town is in a low place surrounded by a river, trees and hills, lovely and green. Ordered rings, got dressed and went to the outskirts of town to see Pastor Sillak. The Pastor was at home and received us in old work clothes. There were other Estonians living in the neighbourhood, but they were all Estonians we did not know. The Pastor's wife played the piano, a man played the violin. The train left at 10 o'clock. Our luggage had stood at the station all that time and on one had touched it.
Sunday August 23. We arrived in Lethbridge at 2 in the morning. We were told at the station that Estonians were in town. We were at a guesthouse, when someone knocked at the door. These were I. Kivi and A. Kulpas. We talked for a while and then started driving to the village.August 30, 1909. Now I have lived here in Barons for a year. People in our family are all hardworking and sensible. My Gus and I live in the best of trust and are very happy. We are still on our honeymoon. I tell Gus all my thoughts and sometimes we are like little children, playing with each other and telling stories. Life here is very quiet and free, and I really like it and my dear little home. Sometimes I long for Mother and my sister and brothers; oh, if they could be here! Then my joy and happiness would be too complete. I cannot even wish for such happiness. I am content with what I have and try to be worthy of my luck!
This completes the tale of my journey. It is the biggest event in my life and the dearest recollection. I will remember it until the day I die.