THE BEST QUESTIONS TO ASK YOUR PARENTS OR GRANDPARENTS WHO WERE BORN IN CROATIA
This guide aims to encourage you to have a meaningful conversation with your parents or grandparents who were born in Croatia. The following questions cover various aspects of their lives and are intended to help them reminisce about their past. There is no right or wrong way to conduct these interviews, so feel free to choose the questions that interest you the most. If you have children, involving them in this conversation can be a great opportunity for them to ask these questions too. You might be surprised by how little or well you know your own parents or grandparents.
1. Tell me about your childhood in Croatia.
2. What was life like in the village of Pupnat on the island of Korcula?
3. How did your family immigrate to New Zealand and Australia?
4. Can you describe the poverty you experienced growing up?
5. What was it like to move to a new country with nothing but the clothes on your back?
6. How did you manage to create prosperous and happy lives despite starting with so little?
7. How does your current life compare to your life in Croatia?
8. What was it like growing up without modern technology like iPads and mobile phones?
9. How did you and your friends spend your afternoons in the cul-de-sac?
10. What challenges did you face as a child of first-generation Croatian immigrants?
11. How did the old Croatian ways mix with the new Australian culture?
12. How did you overcome the language barrier and learn to communicate in English?
13. What role did dances play in your social life and community?
14. How did you manage to balance raising a family while maintaining cultural traditions?
15. How do you think the cultural divide affected our relationship?
16. How has your perception of our differences changed over time?
17. What do you remember most about the “good old days” before technology took over?
18. How did you keep yourself busy without devices or social media?
19. How do you think the life of kids today compares to your childhood?
20. How do you think the world has changed since you were a child?
Remember to record these conversations, either with a video camera or a recording app, to preserve these stories for future generations. Taking the time to listen to the stories that spill from the hearts of previous generations can provide deep insight into their lives and the choices they made. Through understanding and knowledge, we can bridge the generation gap and cultivate appreciation for our family’s history. Start a conversation today with your parents or grandparents – the people who truly matter the most.