Alena Lorencová

* 1924

  • "It was a factory in Babí near Náchod. We assembled engines for airplanes, and it was horrible there. The Germans watched us wherever we went. There was a girl who said something to them and she was deported to Terezín for that. And I... we played such a joke, we were young and jolly… There was a paint-spraying workshop next to us, and the tools they used looked like revolvers. I took one of them, just for fun, and brought it home. There were two of us staying together, and I came there and showed it to her: ´Look, I got a weapon.´ But when we came back to work on Monday, I was called to the office. Somebody had turned me in. Somebody had just informed them that I had taken it. I said: ´But it was just for fun, it was a joke.´ - ´A joke you're saying?! This is sabotage.´ Christ, I was nearly sent where my friend had gone."

  • "It was a terrible week. It kept raining and raining and we were thinking of them, wondering how the children were doing there. Well, what happened was they were camping between those two ponds there – and they released water from pond in Možděnice. The camp was flooded, and my dear little brother arrived home just with his rucksack – and nothing in it. The water took everything. They have saved the tents, but all their small belongings were gone."

  • "To be grateful that they can do it, that they are allowed to. And to try to protect the nature, and to watch out for things around them – to take notice of the vandals who cause damage to the nature, who destroy benches and everything. If the police is not paying attention to it, then they should do it in their free time, when they walk around and look around themselves, and not let the others destroy it, whether in the cities or in nature."

  • "At that time I was already participating on the camp. It was a girls' camp, but it was not set up in the same place, because the stream was nearby and they were scared after the flood. Our camp was thus located right by the pond, behind the mill. It was nice, because the miller would come to visit us in the evenings. We would sit by the campfire, sing, and the miller, who was a great story-teller, would come to us, and we always looked forward to seeing him. Otherwise it was a regular camp. We practiced knot-tying and first aid to pass the time. We also held regular duties. There were not many of us, just a small group, perhaps six or eight tents. We were going for walks in the forest, marking the trails and following the markings."

  • "It was not a tent camp, we stayed in some pub or something like that. There was a hall inside where they prepared straw mattresses for us on the floor and let us use the kitchen. It was great that we could cook there. The entire village gathered there when we arrived. We introduced ourselves and told them that we would like to help them; it was the harvest time. When the farmers and landholders saw us, each of them picked some of our older kids. But the children didn't mind, they were helping them and they all liked it. They were outside in the healthy air, doing whatever was needed: babysitting, raking… I was thus left with the younger children who were closer to me. We didn't have to do anything, and so we were going for walks, I tried to... we would read or learn something, talk about things, and we had fun. Evenings were the best: there was a nice little meadow behind the village, a secluded place with trees, and we would all gather there, including the older children who worked with the farmers. We would sing and the young people from Libchavy would come to join us, and it was really nice, and they liked to remember it afterwards. At the end they came to say good-bye to us and some of our children even received some reward from them."

  • Full recordings
  • 1

    Hlinsko, 29.12.2011

    duration: 25:27
    media recorded in project A Century of Boy Scouts
  • 2

    Hlinsko, 15.10.2012

    duration: 01:01:30
    media recorded in project A Century of Boy Scouts
Full recordings are available only for logged users.

I was very happy that I, a little girl, could greet the adult leaders with the Scout greeting

Alena Šafránková 1945.jpg (historic)
Alena Lorencová
photo: Archiv Vojtěcha Homolky

Mrs. Alena Lorencová was born October, 28, 1924 in Chotěboř. Her parents ran a packaging business in Hlinsko; there she learnt the cardboard-maker’s trade and worked for her parents before the war. During WWII she was doing conscripted labour for the German army in an aircraft engine assembly factory near Náchod. After the war she worked in a textile warehouse as a treasurer in the Jednota grocery store. Since she was from a small trader’s family, after the communist coup in 1948 she was regarded untrustworthy and was the first one to be dismissed from her job. Her parents’ business was confiscated by the state. Mrs. Lorencová began working in the factory Electro-Praga, where she first worked in the galvanizing workshop and later transferred to the production line for health reasons, where she remained working till her retirement. As a young girl she was a member of Junák (Czechoslovak Scouting organization - transl.’s note) and Sokol. She was inspired to become a Scout thanks to her brother whom she had visited at summer camp. She became a leader of a Scout pack before the war. After the restoration of Junák she was the leader of the first postwar camp for Girl Scouts from Hlinsko, which was held in Libchavy near Ústí nad Orlicí in 1945. She married shortly after and started a family.