The Diary of a Young Girl February 16, 1944 - March 20, 1944 Summary

On Margot's birthday, Anne and Peter bond over Margot's presents and selecting the potatoes for Margot's birthday dinner. They are more at ease with each other and willing to share confidences about their lives both before and during their time in the "Secret Annex". Anne comes to understand Peter's feelings about being Jewish and his need for affection. She also sees how inferior he feels about his abilities, especially when compared to Anne and Margot.

Anne is developing deep feelings for Peter. He has given her a purpose to her daily life. Talking with Peter has become central to her happiness. If, for some reason, she is not able to talk alone with him she feels quite miserable; conversely, if she is able to speak with him, all is happiness and right in her world.

Anne also discovers her key to happiness, besides being with Peter, is nature. She feels the best way to overcome depressing feelings is to bask in the beauty of nature. If a person is able to be outside and take in what God has made, then they would feel as if all is right in the world.

Another burglary has occurred in the building, Mr. Van Daan had gone downstairs to sit in Mr. Kraler's office; he noticed the doors to the office were open. Not only were the doors open but, the office was a mess. He thought that a burglary might have occurred, but the lock to the front door was closed. He laid the blame for the doors and mess on Peter and Elli. He stayed in the office for a while, after he was upstairs he didn't think about the situation any more. The next morning Peter told the Franks the front door was open and several items were missing from the building. The others are not only concerned about the break in, but also if the burglars saw Mr. Van Daan. For if they saw Mr. Van Daan they might report him to the authorities, in which case they all might be discovered. The thought was, who ever came into the building must have had a key, in order to get into the building without having to break the lock. This brings fear to the occupants of the "Secret Annex", because the burglar might come back to steal more items. Another possibility is they might bring the authorities in without the knowledge of the group.

As Elli is visiting one night, she expresses how she sometimes feels very discouraged by all that is happening to and around her. Mrs. Frank tells Elli to "think of all the other people who are in trouble!" Anne feels this is terrible advice, she is told to be quiet as she tries to express her own opinion on the subject. Anne feels that she has been subjected to an injustice, just because she is young does not mean she cannot have valid opinions on matters. She takes to referring to the adults in the group as the "know-alls".

Anne gives brief synopsizes of the adults in the group based on her observations. A few of these are -Mrs. Van Daan feels that she is always considered the black sheep because everyone blames her for everything that happens. Mrs. Frank is forgiving of the lack of food and is trying to look towards the end of the war. Whereas, Mr. Frank takes the optimist view of everything is ok, the war will be over soon and it will all turn out alright.

Anne thinks that she has fallen in love with Peter. He fills her every thought when she is awake and her dreams when she is asleep. She has no idea of how he feels about her, which causes her angst. She thinks that he may see her as only a good friend and not as a girlfriend. She also knows it is against societal rules for her to ask him how he feels. He must be the one to declare his feelings first. She just wishes he would let her know either way.

In March of 1944 the conditions for the group become a little grimmer. The people who had been supplying them with food coupons had been caught. This means the ability to obtain meat, butter, fat, and oils has been cut off. It causes the women to be creative cooks, the results which are not very appetizing. Also to add to the food shortage is the inability for Miep, Mr. Koophuis and Elli to go shopping for them. Miep and Mr. Koophuis are ill and Elli just does not have the time to go shopping.

Henk, Miep's husband, has come to visit them and tells the group of life outside the building. He tells them the tale of trying to receive help from a doctor for Miep's cold. The only way to procure a prescription from the doctor is to call and tell the doctor about her symptoms. Then the doctor gives out the prescription but only if Henk arrives within the hour given to him. The only people actually seen by the doctor are the people who have serious illnesses.

Margot and Anne discuss through letters Anne's relationship with Peter. Margot is a little jealous of Anne and Peter's friendship, but she understands. The sisters decide to talk about their feelings through letters because it is easier to express their feelings.

The group, in this section, deal with food shortages and another break in. Anne and Peter are exploring their friendship on a deeper level. Meanwhile the people who help them are experiencing their own trials.

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