auschwitz-birkenau , poland

That was what came to mind when I saw my younger sister's fallen hair extension discarded into a bin today. It's a bit of a harsh leap, train-of-thought-wise.

In one of the blocks at this infamous Nazi concentration camp, there is a long exhibition room, where one side is partitioned with a pane of glass that followed the length of the room. Behind that pane of glass was human hair, filled up nearly to the ceiling. The hair belonged to the prisoners who had been gassed, and all their hair had been shaven and collected to make....textiles. To drive the point home, there a little exhibit in the room displaying the bolts of fabric they wove out of the hair. I understand that some of them were used to make socks for the German military.

It was a bleakly beautiful, harshly memorable visit, but that room is what springs to mind whenever I recall Auschwitz and World War II. For me it truly represented the callous, ruthless efficiency of the Nazis.

I know, it's just a hair extension, and I'm not in anyway condemning hair extensions. I can't believe what a powerful memory it invoked.


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