After having delivered 50 copies of the 8th ‘edition’ of OUR STORIES (by Year 5 of Princess Frederica) I have yet again to say thank you to all who participated and were generous with their stories and memories. I have focused a lot on the interviews this time and tried to publish as much of them as space allowed.
There truly was a range of experiences and stories. Once again, the project highlights not only the diverse heritage of these families, with birthplaces of grandparents as far away as Fiji, New Zealand, India, Brazil, Jamaica and Granada, but also the economic and circumstantial hardship that many faced less than a lifetime ago. We learnt that most stories of evacuation and immigration told had happy endings, but sadly sometimes also meant that safety in one’s own country did not preclude you from prejudice.
But as always there were so many interesting, illuminating facts for the children to consider, such as that for many grandparents, free time was spent helping with chores around the house, but more often, it was spent outside. Free time itself was perhaps a different entity altogether, someone observed, in the absence of technology and social media. Teachers at school were mostly strict and food choices at home limited, especially in the aftermath of war.
Special touches included also learning that some grandparents managed to turn their childhood passions, ie an interest in biology and books respectively, into careers, one as a teacher and the other working in publishing.
I hope everyone enjoys reading about each other’s backgrounds over the holidays and will treasure this snapshot of their family history for years to come.
It was lovely to get to know you all a little bit-until we meet again!