Lidija Grebo - A new life in the Czech Republic

08-10-2002

Lidija Grebo fled her home in war-torn Sarajevo in 1992, to start a new life in the Czech Republic with her two teenage sons. She's been living here ever since and now works for a non-profit organisation called Slovo21, which helps minorities and promotes tolerance in Czech society. In this week's Witness, Lidija recalls her journey from Sarajevo to Belgrade, and the first time she set eyes on Prague:

"I was alone. I was not organised in some kind of convoy, or whatever. I left one morning at six o'clock, completely alone. I came to one point outside of Sarajevo and then I waited for a bus, after which I travelled for three days until I came to the village on the sea coast that I am from. I had some relatives there, some cousins, so I spent seven days with them because I was so tired and scared - I simply was in shock. After the seven days, I went through all of Croatia and through Hungary and came to Belgrade, where my children were because my parents lived there at the time. One excellent man called me and offered me to come to Prague. It was six o'clock when we arrived after twenty hours of travelling and that day, in the afternoon, we took a small walk. It was my first time in Prague. I had never been there before and I saw the Old Town Square and the Astronomical Clock and they were my first impressions of the city."