I am learning more and more that in order to make a documentary, one must have nerves of steel, the mentality of a politician, an incredible ability to negotiate, and a lot of money (but let’s not even go there).
We got back from Poland on the 8th in the early morning, after driving overnight from Warsaw. We had to pass by Borislav and meet with the man who now owns the house where Aharon Weiss’ family was hidden during WWII.
The route we took from Warsaw to Borislav made us pass at 5 am by our own street in Lviv and we couldn’t even stop. We had to pretend we didn’t really care about a hot shower and hot tea. We had to be in Borislav in the early morning to make sure that we would be expected the next day at that house with Aharon.
As we get to Borislav, we are introduced to the dilemma of Mykola Yakovytch the present owner of the house. What do you do when your own house becomes a touristic attraction and the basement where you have old boxes and pieces of wood stacked becomes a holy place? In the mid-90s, when Aharon’s brother was Israel’s ambassador to Poland, the basement they were hiding in during the war was discovered, and people started coming in buses to visit. At one point Mykola Yakovytch lost his nerves. At the same time, the Weiss family got offended because they felt they had all rights to visit that place and did not feel responsible for people in buses. So for us the main challenge was: how do you “reconcile” between Mykola and Aharon in order to be able to film in that basement?
We were also facing another dilemma: Aharon was followed by another camera crew who wanted to film the same story in that same place…
Aharon and Mykola got reconciled because of sympathy over a common disease in the family, and the two film crews got reconciled when it started pouring rain and our camera was heroically saved by an umbrella from the other crew while their camera was covered by their own rain coat.
We all left at the end; happy, wet and reconciled.