After the collapse of the Soviet Union my father, aunt, sister and I went to Europe to see if we could reconnect with the families of my grandparents. While my aunt had maintained contact with my grandmother's family in eastern Czechoslovakia (now Slovakia), we had lost all contact with my grandfather's family.
We were successful beyond any dreams we had. We visited Baba's nieces and nephews, her village of Prislop, saw family graves and met family we thought never to meet. Through a cousin relay I still don't understand we made contact with my grandfather's family. We visited cousins living in Czechoslovakia and Hungary and were smuggled across the border into the Ukraine (we had no visas). There we visited family in Uzhgorod, Khust and my grandfather's village, known today as Berezovo. It was enormously moving, an experience I still have trouble writing about.
While we were there a cousin gave us this small painting. I believe it is of the river running by Berezovo - the Rika. My cousin's husband painted it in 1989. It's what I have of my grandfather's home.
Source: Untitled painting, Vasil Britnak, 1989. Digital Image. Privately held by Nolichucky Roots [ADDRESS FOR PRIVATE USE], 2001.