The Peter and Gertrud Klopp Family Project

Reflections on Life, Family and Community

Chapter 34 of the Peter and Gertrud Klopp Story – Part VI


Key Player #6: Erika Klopp, Peter’s Mother

As the drama unfolds I will introduce for each part of this chapter one person, who played a major role in our desperate struggle for being reunited in Canada.

Stepping up the Pace

“It is easier in spite of the great distance to visit relatives in Canada than those in East Germany. And we will lose our children we try to hold captive. In a higher sense we will regain them as we let them go.”  Peter’s Mother

From the moment the avalanche of opposing letters came crashing down on us, Biene and I accelerated the pace of our correspondence to a feverish pitch, as far as the notoriously slow mail service between England and Canada  would allow any speeding up at all. Biene continued to be resolute and firm in her decision to come to Canada and marry me as early as the following spring. While I had nagging doubts about our future, her bold attitude emanating from her letters was like a shining exemplar encouraging me to be strong and not to despair. Biene’s twin brother had planted poison in my heart. I had premonitions, even believed to hear inner voices with dire warnings of imminent disaster. Fortunately, Biene was always able to dispel such dark fears, which usually surfaced on my distraught mind after stepping down into my dingy basement room after a long, hard day at the university.

With every new letter she rekindled my longing for her presence. Her passionately written words filled my heart with warmth and confidence, fortifying me for the long pause in our correspondence, which was to come even before she returned to Germany. For the longest time like a weary wanderer leaning on his walking stick, I clung to her words.

Do you know Peter that I have the same feelings like you namely that I might become a good wife to you? I am longing for you so much! Your words saying that we must both grow together touched me deeply because that’s what I feel every day more. Yet, Peter is it not a miracle all the same? Look we both are going through the same experiences of life although thousands of miles are between us. In mind we are together. I feel so closely linked to you that to a certain extent the distance does not matter. Yet we are living beings of flesh and blood and not only souls. Therefore even the strongest mental link is only a substitute for being together. I want to feel your arms around me, touch you, speak to you and kiss you. Please undertake all the necessary steps for my coming at once. Have always confidence in me and never let doubts prevail over you.

My dear blogging friends, let me break the rules for writing an objective autobiography and allow me to address you directly. After reading these passionately written lines, tell me who would be the young man whose pulse would not go up a notch faster, would not feel the warmth of tender anticipation flood his heart, and would not foretaste in all its intensity the embrace of his beloved sweetheart ? Even a heart of stone would melt after being exposed to so much loving-kindness!

How could Biene have so much confidence that everything would work out in the end? Was it naive and wishful thinking or blind trust in Providence? Was she truly prepared to enter the lions’ den, especially after the barrage of opposing letters suddenly ended and dead silence from parents and brother was sending out ominous warning signals?

39 thoughts on “Chapter 34 of the Peter and Gertrud Klopp Story – Part VI

  1. thecedarjournal

    Peter- First, I love this story! Second, I love and admire your writing as I don’t think I could ever write and capture in Dutch my life story with all the passion and pain that I could in my native English. So for that I really admire you!

    Now- anyone who could write like Biene and capture a young heart like she captured yours is also talented. It is one thing to write, another thing to capture real feelings in a letter in a passionate way.

    I have told you before, I will continue to tell you, thanks for sharing this wonderful love story!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Peter Klopp Post author

      Do not feel bad of not being able to write as well in Dutch, my dear blogging friend. I had the advantage to live in Canada for more than 50 years with total immersion and to teach young students for more than 30. Something has to rub off with such a long stretch of exposure to another language. Thank you for all your compliments! They are truly appreciated.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Amy

    I agree with what the other commenters said both about the story, about Biene, and about your writing. It is so heartwarming and authentic. I also love the quote from your mother—is it something she said to your in-laws at some point? It is so true.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Peter Klopp Post author

      My mother sent me a letter containing the quote during the time of the crisis. She was always in support of our pans to get married, even she shared some of the concerns with my future mother-in-law. Thank you very much for your support and compliment, Amy!


  3. Pure Glory

    Your story comes forth strongly, told from your mother’s perspective, Biene’s strong commitment and passionate love for you, and your heart sold to her despite all the obstacles. The firm opposition and the resolute resolution of Biene who knew who she loved and would not be denied. Who can resist such wonderful love? As a blogging friend, love your commentary in the story.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Peter Klopp Post author

      Thank you very much for your kind and heart-warming comment! To receive such supportive words makes a great difference in motivation to keep writing and finish Book 1, which ends with Biene’s arrival in Canada.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Des

    Such a good story and so well told! To answer your direct address to the reader: I’ll admit the love and sincerity in Biene’s letter and your response to it all these years later brought an unexpected wave of emotion over me as I read it. What a tribute to this commitment between two young people with all the obstacles in your way! In my opinion, it was not blind faith or Providence, it was unwavering focus and determination to build a future together, no matter what. This devotion is what the world really needs more of right now.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Peter Klopp Post author

      My dear blogging friend, thank you so much for your kind words of appreciation! I read your ‘about me’ and found that we two have quite a few things in common and share values that seem to be more and more under attack in our modern world. Is Des your name? Thanks again and greetings from distant Canada!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Des

        I agree that we have many things in common, and I think we share some common views on life in general. Incidentally, you reminded me to go back and look at my “About page”, which I’ve really neglected. I did add this paragraph: “A few people occasionally call me “Des” or “Dez”.  I’ve always liked that nickname so I decided to use it for my blog.  It’s a shortened version of “Desert Dog”, which is a name I earned when I was a track and field miler in college. It seems my haggard appearance after one of my training runs on a hot day earned me that moniker.” I may end up keeping this blog and using my given name, but right now I’m just testing the waters….in the meantime, I’m really looking forward to your next post!

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Edda

    Wie stark und tapfer Bienes Reaktion auf die Briefe ihres Vaters und Bruders und ihrer Verwandten war . Bewundernswert und ohne wenn und aber hat sie sich sofort wiederholt zu Dir bekannt. Sie hat Dich gleichzeitig seelisch aufgerichtet und Dir Mut gemacht.Das hast Du auch nötig gehabt, denn Du wolltest ja auch Dein Studium bestmöglichst abschließen und das ist Dir ja auch super gelungen, wie man weiss.Eine so schöne und gleichzeitig traurige Situation für Euch. Biene war so stark.
    Eure Liebesgeschichte ist ein Roman!!!

    Weiterhin alles Gute ,Peter! Erhol Dich bitte ganz schnell!
    Herzliche Grüße!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Peter Klopp Post author

      Ja, mit dem Studium hatte ich mir große Ziele gesetzt. Da kam die Krise natürlich genau zur falschen Zeit. Ich musste doch an die Finanzierung des zweiten Studienjahres denken. Es freut mich immer aufs Neue, welchen Anklang unsere Liebesgeschichte bei dir gefunden hat. Vielen Dank auch für deine guten Wünsche! Es geht mir nun schon viel besser und esse schon mal feste Speisen. Habt noch ein schönes Wochenende!


  6. taphian

    Frauen haben manchmal ein gutes Bauchgefühl oder Intuition, lieber Peter. Vielleicht ahnte Biene schon, dass alles gut gehen würde. Es ist wirklich sehr spannend, Euch in Eurer Liebesgeschichte zu begleiten. Hilft es auch in einer “älteren” Beziehung, sich noch einmal die Anfänge vor Augen zu führen? Liebe Grüße Mitza

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Peter Klopp Post author

      Die Intuition der Frauen habe ich nie verstanden, eben weil ich ein Mann bin.
      Doch habe ich ihre Existenz nie geleugnet.
      Nach langjähriger Ehe kann ich deine Frage nur bejahen. Ja noch einmal mit Hilfe unserer erhaltenen Korrespondenz über die Ereignisse einer längst verflossenen Zeit zu durchwandern hat unsere Beziehung zu einander gestärkt und vertieft. Vielleicht bei mir mehr als bei Biene, die schon immer mehr die Betonung auf das Leben in der Gegenwart gelegt hat. Hab noch ein gemütliches Wochenende, liebe Mitza!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. taphian

        Das ist sehr interessant und schön, zu hören, dass Menschen so lange eine tiefe Zuneigung verspüren können. Vielleicht sollte ich es auch mal versuchen, lieber Peter:)

        Liked by 1 person

  7. Ann Coleman

    I think you are a very lucky man to be on the receiving end of such letters from someone you loved! Her courage and devotion are truly inspiring. I’m sure there are still twists to come in this story, but not in your love for each other.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Peter Klopp Post author

      I agree with you, Ann. I am a very lucky man indeed. These letters had gained an almost magical power, which gave me strength and courage to travel through the difficult times that still lay ahead for us. Even now after all these years her letters have not lost any of its magic even for you and many others of my followers.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Peter Klopp Post author

      Oh yes, Cornelia! So much I can reveal to you, after our first son was born in 1967 the icy conditions began to thaw rapidly and in 1968 we showed off our little Robert to Biene’s parents. Love and peace reigned from that point in a bigger family, as you have put it so nicely.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Bun Karyudo

    Just as you say, Peter, such a passionately written letter could not but touch the heart and strengthen the resolve of any young man lucky enough to receive it. While I can imagine she had to face down all sorts of nagging, pleading and argumentation when she eventually returned to Germany, I’m betting she coped with it magnificently.

    Liked by 1 person

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