“Who, after all, speaks today of the annihilation of the Armenians” is inscribed on one of the walls at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington D.C. We did not tour that museum, but we did tour The Zekelman Holocaust Center in Farmington Hills, Michigan. Even as one approaches the museum the building and grounds were designed to evoke the Concentration Camps of the Third Reich. There unfortunately has been seen a rise in Anti-Semitism around the world again, and hatred is easy to foment anywhere. The word “genocide” was coined in 1944 by Raphael Lemkin, a Polish-born lawyer who fled the persecution and moved to America in 1941. We actually had to go through a security inspection, before we could enter the museum.
Upon entering the museum, the first image to be seen is a boxcar that was used to shuttle humanity to the Concentration Camps, with no concern for humanity. While the building does not look that large from the outside, it took me several hours to go through the exhibits, and some I did not stay for long and others that required more effort, I left for perhaps another time. My Bride left the exhibit halls to go hear a talk, by a “survivor,” but I passed, as I worked with a survivor for three years during my high school years. Instead, I got a chance to watch a group of students running around and laughing as if they were at a basketball game, thankfully they must have been escorted out, because they were not disrupted the serenity of the occasion. While I could go on and on about the atrocities and hatred, I would rather mention the hope which was personified by the Viola and Gary Kappy Anne Frank Tree Exhibit and Garden. The Zekelman Holocaust Center is home to one of eleven saplings in the United States harvested from the white horse chestnut tree that grew outside of Anne Frank’s hiding place and mentioned in her diary writings.
As we were leaving the center, we pondered where to eat, and I suggested a restaurant that my dinner club uses several times a year; and my Bride had never been there. My Bride wanted something warm and strong after the tour and she had a Spanish Coffee, and most of the time I go there I start off with a Maker’s Mark Whiskey Sour and then have a glass of wine with dinner. We had Broasted chicken and Broasted potato wedges and started off with creamy Cole Slaw. Alas, the restaurant is not known for a fine wine carte. I went with something full bodied to go with breading of the Broasted chicken. I had a glass of Jacob’s Creek Classic Shiraz Australia 2020. Jacob’s Creek has a large portfolio of wines spanning several regions and varieties and they are based in the Barossa Valley and are known for good value. The company Gramp & Sons was established in 1847 planting vines along the banks of Jacob’s Creek. In 1850 the wines used the Orland Wines label, and Jacob’s Creek appeared on labels in 1976. Today it is part of Pernod Ricard. A deep purple with notes of dark cherry, plums and mocha. On the palate tones of dark fruit and soft tannins with a very short finish. The wine is a bulk wine that is to be enjoyed as close to the vintage date as possible. My Bride enjoyed the restaurant and we were both in awe of our day at the museum and if you go, give yourself a minimum of three hours, and if they have a speaker, even longer.