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New Zealand's First Refugees: Pahiatua's Polish Children

Barber or baba?

Barber or baba?

While living at the Polish Children's Camp in Pahiatua, my father Bolesław Jankiewicz, who was a staff member there, knew very little English. One day he decided to go to the Pahiatua township for a haircut. Not knowing his way around the town, he stopped a couple and asked, pointing to his hair, where he could have a haircut? The couple replied by asking: "You want a barber?" My poor father was shocked! He did not want a "baba" (which in Polish means a woman who is old or of ill repute), he just wanted his hair cut.