My aunt’s journey was every bit as difficult as I describe in LETTERS FROM RIFKA. And she was only 10 years old when she made the passage to America, not 12, turning 13, as Rifka is in the book. In reality Lucy’s mother stayed with her in Belgium but Lucy still managed to get lost after running away from the man with the gold teeth who frightened her so, so I suspect her mother wasn’t closely supervising her…she certainly had not closely supervised Lucy when they were still in Berdichev, she was simply too busy.