[i] Okay. [respondent name] thank you for doing this to have this conversation together. That you have some time for us project. To begin with with the interview, I got you requested for an item choose what for you is very dear. And I’m very I wonder what that is. And if you’re there Yeah, I can tell you about that.

[r] Yeah, that’s one of my guitars. My best friend. And who always goes with me and who’s always next to me. I use those for good and also in bad times. But it always is, then I can get there express myself, then I can express my feeling involved in that. Then I can are what I am. Together with my guitar.

[i] And what does it mean that’s what you are?

[r] My wish?

[i] No what that means.

[r] That means a lot for me, it’s just then I can be what I am if I put my guitar next to have me, and if I play then I can completely shut myself off from the outside world, then I can really come into some kind of ecstasy. Then I can really to be all me.

[i] When am you started to fall in love on a guitar? Oh, it’s been a long time. It’s been 32, 33 years ago. I was immediately sold, with the first one. With the first tones I was totally fell in love with guitar. I have, I started playing with my brother. He taught me. And since then, I have my guitar always with me.

[i] And how did that come about?

[r] Yeah, in my family was music always very important. I grew up with whole a lot of music at home. My mother used to sing, my sister used to sing, my sister used to sing… also played guitar. My brother plays guitar and I also started when I was 11 years old.

[i] Do you remember what your first song you were playing?

[r] Yeah I guess, I’m not sure if I know what song it is. But I played on one string. I played bass guitar then. And then I played, my brother played there. And every single one of him… he asked me to help him, we had two guitars at home at the time, if I could give him a hand. And, I said yes right away. So I have, thus started and so it came into being. Me and guitar. Inseparable.

[i] Still? Still. It always will be. Forever like this.

[i] Would you what want to play us? I’m very curious what that is.

[r] Yeah, no, I want to. Am I gonna play a song that will make me lately, which I’ve been doing a lot of I’m busy. And that’s just at this time with me. So then I’m gonna really play one of the latest songs. A little bit. I’m on watch here. So close your eyes and get some rest. I’m here to watch your heart. It’s been faulted from the start. I’m the ribs in your chest. I’m not an angel. I never mean to make you cry. Jumping through my hoops with dissension in the troops and a smile inside. What’s that over my shoulder? Fear of getting older. Stay with me. Sing me a love song from your heart or from the phonebook. I don’t matter me I’m an apple, you’re the tree. I won’t fall when you shook. What’s that over your shoulder? Fear of getting older Stay with me. la la la la la la la la It ends with a kiss. It ends with a tear. It ends with the lights out bathed in our fears. Tell me nonsense I don’t want sincere. I saw the lightning. Cut through difficult winter sky of the year. la la la la la la la la

[i] Very nice.

[r] Yeah.

[i] Thank you.

[r] Yeah, I got that from a friend as a gift. Then I, I call it a gift. Did I get it from her this song heard for the first time. Then I was right sold. So I had to teach him how to play.

[i] And why were you sold? Can you tell me more about that?

[r] Yeah, about music first, I think music very nice. But so do I, uh, um, lyrics I find It’s a lot of fun. A love song, that’s about love I really like that. That’s just the way it’s supposed to be on guitar. Love, guitar, grief. That’s all on guitar.

[i] What does that song do to you if you play that?

[r] Okay, yeah that does quite a bit. While I’m singing and playing that I’m thinking of a few things. How that came about, for example, that song, when I first …time. That I thought that was very nice and since then Don’t let go of this song. I think it’s very beautiful because every time I then I’ll do it.

[i] What kind of emotions are involved?

[r] Yes, a lot of emotions come on top of that. Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. Also from now, but also from the past. Also from friends, from family, from so is that girlfriend. She’s coming up, too, so.

[i] It’s still a special song.

[r] Yeah, it certainly remains a special song. Also a very special person from whom I heard that for the first time. She gave me and I’m very happy about that.

[i] Good to hear. And nice that you do the same with me here wanted to share for the project.

[r] Yeah, nice that you wanted to interview me. So nice, too.

[i] You now have a song played. You told me, guitar is a life from you. Music means a lot for you. But can you tell me something? Who are you? Who’s [Name] ?

[r] Okay. Yeah, I… I’m [name respondent] . I am coming 45 years old. I’m from Bosnia. [painting falls off the wall] Oh. I’m going over Bosnia… That’s a sign. I think so. I’m from Bosnia. I’m 20 years old. came to Holland as a refugee. With my girlfriend at the time. Meanwhile we don’t live together anymore. And yes, I’m a regular guy which is a normal life in Bosnia has had. A very good one, I’d say a very good one had life as a child. Very nice childhood. And when I came here I was, just before I got here, I was busy, I studied in Sarajevo. And because of the war there I’m actually quitting. And I still have two and a half years active in the war participated and on a given time I was a little tired of and– of all the things that happened out there. I I’ve seen a lot. Been through a lot. Seen a lot of bad things and that actually helped me get away from my hometown and my homeland. Without war, I’d never be here. But, yes… it was different then. And then I decided with my girlfriend to run away together. We came to Holland. Then you’re probably gonna ask why the Netherlands. Yeah, yeah. We had a girlfriend living in Amsterdam. And she said that sth. easier to get papers here to get, to stay here. And I had didn’t make much sense when… I didn’t think to ever maybe come back. But that’s why we went to the Netherlands came and stayed here.

[i] And how was that, that choice, to make those. From gosh. I’ll leave now my native country back, I’m leaving.

[r] Yeah, I have to tell you honestly, that was not so hard to make that choice at the time. I’m at war experienced. And that’s why I’ve been Military I have a lot of things seeing what I didn’t agree with. Especially after the… how people interact dealings and how how people don’t people are, were no longer. How they were bad, actually. And that they are the others were gonna hurt. And it touched me so much that I thought now that’s not the country I want to live in. That’s not what I learned as a child, that’s not how I grew up. How I’ve dealt with people. I didn’t like that. That’s when I decided to leave. There was another reason easier, it would have been, I was in love. I was together with my girlfriend and we wanted to be somewhere together where no does not mean what faith you have and who you are and what your name is. That’s what we wanted don’t want to go through it. We wanted to go somewhere where is not important. And then we came to the Netherlands.

[i] And what did that do to you to make all that see, experience and then decide I’m leaving.

[r] Yeah, I have to honestly tell you I think I kind of trauma as a result. Anyway, I’ve suffered trauma as a soldier with who has to shoot, who has to shoot, who has to shoot, who has to shoot, who has to shoot, who has to shoot, who has to shoot, who has to shoot, who has to shoot, who has to shoot, who has to shoot, who has to shoot, who has to shoot, who has to shoot, who has to shoot, who has to shoot, who has to shoot, who has to shoot, who has to shoot, who has to shoot, who has to shoot, who has to shoot, who has to shoot, who has to shoot, who has to shoot? waging war, who must as opposed to what you’re used to. I’d rather find with my guitar making music than walking with a gun. That’s what made me… I did, yes, made another human being. I’m sure of it. I was 23 at the time, 24 years old. I was supposed to start living. I had to… with friends go party. I had to go after women, you know, that’s just part of it. I just had to enjoy alive, but I didn’t. So that’s really got me made other people out of me. Whatever it is, is that… I think I’m very damaged thereby and I miss, I have to honestly, I still miss that time that I’m 23, 24, that I’m that I can travel, that I can do things that I like. And then there was no chance.

[i] And now when you get back Thinks, uh, are you now other than you would be if you had?

[r] I guess I’ve changed a lot, yeah.

[i] Can you get some tell you more about it?

[r] Yeah, tell me more about it. You know, if you miss that. Then you miss your whole life, I still miss my, yeah, it’s not childhood, but it’s that age and doing this kind of thing. I guess now I’m also try, because I’m no longer together with the girlfriend at the time and I’m trying now a little freer life, I have to be honest. I’m trying some catch up on things. I just need that. And that’s how I feel, and that’s where I then I’ll do it. Then I will. So then, when I think about it, yeah, I think a little… I’m sorry. I’m a little sorry. That’s how it turned out, as it turned out. But yes, You can’t reverse that. You have to… just trying to enjoy your life. And anyway, that I that I had to shoot had to go to war. Active participation. Yeah, that’s got me a whole other human being too made. I’ve seen a lot, too, a lot… Luckily, I guess I’ve never seen or that I killed somebody or that I, you know… Happy I’m at war too remained human. Where I.., who I wanted to be. I don’t have a bad things done. I have didn’t hurt anybody. Not in any case on purpose. And I’m very happy about that. I’m very happy about that.

[i] Got that on at present influence on your life? That period?

[r] Yeah, it did affect my life now. But in a way you can’t be the same person. And I think I kind of.., I’m very open in there, too, that I’m a little damaged in there, too. That I, you know, I’ve finished and mood swings, I think it’s that’s why. Because of my war period. I’ve also tried to process somehow. I don’t like to think to that but then I do have occasional need to… You know, suit… I the computer and I’ll check in every now and then wartime movies or some documentaries. I need that from time to time. I don’t know why, but that’s what I’m looking at to that now and then. Sometimes I also dream and over there and sometimes I have feeling like I’m somewhere, for example, if I walk somewhere that one thing I see that brings me back 20 years ago, which I I’ve been through. About weird things or… I do, too, from time to time subconsciously I’m not aware working on it, I’m trying to… I have to myself… Whatever I’ve done internally, I try meditating a little bit, too. I’m also trying a little work on yourself and that helped me anyway. I haven’t stopped and said that’s it. But… but.., i try myself also develop. And become a better person anyway. But that certainly affected me. Still do, but…

[i] Can you tell us a little more about how to use that goes around? That you say meditate, for example.

[r] Yeah.

[i] How did that go?

[r] Yeah, how I deal with that. Sometimes I don’t want to think about that, you know. Sometimes, you put it away, too. But, you know, that’s a feeling you can’t… can’t quite get away. Sometimes that comes up. I have friends I can talk to. I also have walked in on a therapist for a while. I needed to to tell. That’s when he advised me to have kids with me. And tell me kids. I find that very difficult. But my kids are a little wise and then they come they’re behind with questions. And then they ask a lot of questions: “how did it go? And “What have you been through? And that helps me, too. So those conversations have with friends or with children. Occasionally it just comes up. And with my guitar, I often have conversations about. If I make music then …that’s coming up, too. Then so have you.

[i] And meditate, How does that help you?

[r] Yeah, you’re working on yourself. To inner things. That’s that’s what I got through my work. I work for a anthroposophical body. That is the doctrine of Rudolf Steiner. Is also someone who once in Croatia was born and actually been Eastern empire. Coincidentally. I came across this kind of people here against it. That doctrine is about the spiritual world. A kind of spiritual world exist. And that it is accessible through your own inner development. And that helped me a lot. That’s what I’ve been touching Come on, I’m still working on that. And meditation anyway, that’s for everyone well, you know. There, you work on your own peace. To that own you work.

[i] And can you tell us anything about how you got in touch with that with that leather? How did that happen when you think back? Yeah, very coincidental. I was… We were still together then. We went to Rotterdam came. We were supposed to get a house here. And I was unemployed. While I’m one, I can say, whole I’m a handy guy. With my hands I can’t just play the guitar… play, but I can do other things. And then I went through a friend acquainted with the a woman who just became a widow who wanted to …change everything about her place. Everything that reminded her of her dead man, she wanted to change. Then I got for her a wall painted and she was totally please. She asked me to fix up the whole house. So from laying parquet to painting walls and actually I did everything that was necessary for her. And she had a handicapped daughter. Who lived in a foundation an anthroposophical foundation and they needed someone which is convenient. Those different can do chores. Then she asked me, “Would you “want to apply there? Then, what I wholeheartedly then wanted to. Was I really looking for a job. I wanted to do something. Wasn’t for me to stay home and do nothing. So I applied there. And… and.., then I was hired right away. Within a few days, I’ll have a “Melkert contract.” It’s such a “refugee thing” that you know what that is. Do I have a Melkert job offered. That’s how I came into contact with one of those institutions. It was for me the first time, I have to be honest, in a year that I really felt like a human being. I’d have been so welcomed into such a company. Really not as a refugee or not as someone who comes from somewhere. But I was really received like a human being. It touched me so much. That I totally fall in love on those people, on my colleagues. On that kind. To Orion. That’s my employer. I just felt from day one at home. And there they had so much understanding for me, you know. You scared me. when I got to know the residents. That were all people with a need for care. Physical or mentally or both. And I was a little freaked out. I thought: “I hope I can find my way around here. But with the help of my colleagues, I’ve been very… learned a lot from people I’ve worked with. And that I’m still after, how long I’ve been working here, 17 years, I think. That I work here. So that’s how I got in touch, by any chance. And I still am. here.

[i] And you say so: “you felt like a human being. What’s that? What’s that for? Why ? wasn’t that before?

[r] As a fugitive, I don’t know if you as a fugitive here, that was very difficult to find a way out. The people weren’t real, in the beginning, open. For people who somewhere come from, especially before people from abroad. Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, people are very Careful in there. I felt a lot of people who have a little are cold to each other. And we didn’t have any friends, we had not really anyone in Rotterdam. There were two of us here and then you have to really do a lot to get here to be able to make a living. To get here to be able to make a start. And, so there was a period of a year in which I didn’t really felt good. We had thought about that a couple of times as well to maybe go back, you know. That was pretty hard. In reception centers and, you know, all the time to move. I didn’t really feel at ease. But when I taught people here know, from the first day I felt valuable again, felt I’m human again. Did I really feel… I could be what I am. And they accepted that. They really liked to see me as I am. And that gave me a huge push. I can never forgot when I first came home. Did I say to my girlfriend at the time: ‘yeah, you know, I haven’t been through this yet in Holland, these people… I can’t explain but you have to go through it. “Really talk to them. And there I really was …all real… I felt like a valuable person. Who has real value. And and that could be what it is.

[i] And how is that then moved on again?

[r] Yeah, I have a permanent contract after that got it. And then my girlfriend received work at Orion Foundation. And inside a year, a year and a half year, we’ve been asked as resident employees within “in community”, we call it “community.” to live. And 15 years ago we were kind of looked at as cult I have to be honest. That was… Yeah, we… do a lot together. We had a lot of meetings. We had a lot of annual parties. We had a lot of fun. We’ve, you know. you, that’s what people in the beginning found in the neighborhood Pretty exciting. And that was a first, too, in my opinion, in the world. That in the anthroposophical foundation, or a community where disabled people live and work, they come into the neighborhood. In the old days, they’d always put away somewhere in the woods or behind the fences and then they wouldn’t have had much contact with the outside world. I think Orion scoop here’s to this area. And also what we did then is: it’s about people from outside have much to do with much get together with the people from the neighborhood. That after 15 years here, we are now very famous, you can Zevenkamp or these parts of Rotterdam don’t propose without Orion. And that’s actually… People are watching us then as a sect because they didn’t know much about us. Because they, you know, two little contact with had them. But now we’re all set, I’d say “settled.” That we really mean a lot in the neighborhood and we do that a lot together with the people. And we’re like residents employee come to live here. And I still live there. I’ve got the whole very much to my liking. I couldn’t imagine to live here in a terraced house. My children grew up here and they still like it to be here. Then I’m still the only resident employee in Orion. I still am and I hope I can still for a very long time.

[i] And how does it feel to have a part to be from that foundation?

[r] Yeah, I have to say I’m honored to be here. can live. I live in, you’ve seen, a green environment. That’s very quiet, very nice. I’ve got the best neighbors of Rotterdam, I always say. I live together with 8 heavy handicapped people or I’d say, people with a need for care. And we’ve never in those 16 years of trouble had. I’m honored to live here. It’s true, I’ve got to go on. from work and my private life. Sometimes that’s too much. Then they can always reach. And then I’m actually 24 hours reachable when I’m at home they can always call me. But on the other hand I have a lot of freedom that I’m very good at separating that too. Do I have enough time to my private life also good to build and do.

[i] Can you tell us about your role in that foundation? My role… I am started out as a handyman. I did my first year alone. And after the first year, I did with a few of our residents did. I’ve walked every day in different houses. We’ve got 16 locations here. So I have every day, with two boys with a care request, visited houses and did small jobs with them. Those were two guys who were on a higher level. And who were very handy too. But they lived in Orion. I’m done with them, I think seven years. I’ve also been in homes worked as a tutor. I’ve, what else have I done? Yeah, I’m… Then I came to live here, I have my own had a workshop. Where I’ve guided people and did different jobs. What I’m doing right now, I’d say, I’ll arrange fire safety in Orion. All about fire safety has to do it goes through me. I also check all the fire stations in Orion, sometimes I do… with residents, sometimes I do it alone. Got certified for. And I guide people on their workshop, here in cultural center. If, for example, our room is rented out or if it’s in theater, if it’s in concert, then I’m gonna go with people and set everything up. Of technique until I clean up, I’ll do anything. That’s what I’m doing right now.

[i] And within that foundation how is your relationship with the residents, with the staff?

[r] Very good. Yes, I have very good colleagues. Anyway, we’re far exceed what we were 15 years ago. I think we count about more more than 100 residents and more than 100 employees. I have very good contacts I’d say, especially with residents. I I… know every resident and every resident knows me. They met me through my guitar, too. It’s got helped me a lot here, too. I make music very often in Orion. I also give private lessons to a couple of residents. They love to make music with me here or at their house. Yeah, that’s very healthy, very good, I’m really enjoying myself here in Orion. Am I very happy that I’m here.

[i] And can you tell us something about how you’re combining music with the foundation? Yes, I combine… We also have a music group. And anyway being people love music. Just like me. Maybe even more than me. And they always ask me wants to come into one of the houses and make music. Today I just got a question from a ceramics workshop whether I’d once at half past four in the afternoon to their will accrue to music to do with them. I teach private lessons, guitar lessons, to three residents. Occasionally we perform together, in our cultural center. And our annual parties anyway, when we celebrate, there is always a lot music present. It’s made by me or by someone else. I’ve got a lot of colleagues who also make music that different playing instruments. Occasionally we get together and then we’ll make a party of it.

[i] And what does that do to you if you can share your music with, yes, the residents of this foundation?

[r] Yeah, that makes me happy. Then I’m all in my element. I certainly make music for others too. And am I very happy that I that can share with them. And and… certainly proud of them that they’re with me want to play or sing too. Yeah, that makes me just happy man.

[i] And what kind of music is it that you two make together? Oh, we play all kinds of things. From Beatles to to Andre Hazes, for example. Anything. We make …of everything. It’s really all kinds of music. From rock to blues, from Dutch-speaking to even Bosnian music I play with them, they really like it. Yeah, really nice.

[i] And is it for the residents only an activity of making music or has it any other purpose out of you, too?

[r] Yeah, you know, it’s another purpose. I’d say I’m teaching three guys. And then there’s me a little into it. And, I once wanted a way find to start hitting people, to to start triggering people, to start triggering people …let them be happy. There are three residents are very different from each other. And, I make music with them on three different ways. That will never really become great guitarists. But how they enjoy being they play guitar with me. You know, that’s enough to see. They sing and they play guitar their way. Two can’t play chords themselves, but how and how they’re laughing at that. You know, that’s for I achieved a goal. If I come and get them to come to me when you see that smile on their faces. And that they’re always talking about that, then it’s really a situation for me where I think yes, I have make sth. So I’m really trying to make contact by having music with them. And I certainly have. We’re very happy about it. I also hear from parents that they’re always talking about them coming to me. To make music, playing guitar. That makes me excited, too. I love nice of you to do that.

[i] And how do you see that continuing? In the future?

[r] Yes in the future I see… In terms of music, you mean? Yeah, you know, there’s a lot ask for in my foundation residents music class give, especially guitar lessons. I don’t have a lot of time for that. I have to be honest, I’m a busy man. I like different things. So I said I’m going with the three guys down the road. And I’ll see about it later. But now I have I don’t really have much time to hiring people to make music, when there’s a lot of demand for it. But I can see it, they like. If they like it, we’ll do it together, if… there will come a time when they don’t like then we don’t do that anymore.

[i] You say you’re a busy man. What else do you do? Yeah, I’m busy, man. I have two daughters first of all, those are genuine most importantly ladies in my life. 19 and 16 years old. And that’s very helpful. Youngest daughter lives with me and eldest daughter lives with her mother. He doesn’t live either, by the way, far away from here, but they’ll come to sleep with me or with her. She can decide for themselves where and how they want, they can sleep always decide for themselves. My youngest daughter of 16 is a top athlete. That tennis very high and he travels a lot. He trains a lot, and I’m very, very involved. all these years. That’s now, I think, that she’s been playing tennis for seven years now. I’ve traveled a lot with her. I’m very much involved. I’ve got a lot of work to do on that. And with the oldest, I have to be honest, I have a little less obligation. Good thing it always is waiting to see what we’re gonna do together. That we talk together that we have do something. So yeah, that’s my job number one. Being a father. And besides, yeah, I work out a lot. I also have a lot exercised as a child. That’s also remembered when I was 16. I know I had to choose again, I had to move on or I had to play more guitar. I have chosen happy for my guitar. But I kept doing sports a little bit. And still do. I sport two, minimum twice a week. I play table tennis. And until two three years ago I played league, too. Now, I only do that recreationally, but as fanatical as a professional. So do I. I have very …a lot in a large group… I have a lot of friends. I go with a lot of my friends to. I make a lot of music. I also play in a band. I perform a lot. Or with me in Orion or somewhere else. Any chance I can get my guitar then show me, I’ll get it. And then I’m gonna make music.

[i] Can you tell me more about that? About your band.

[r] About my band. Yeah, nice. Yeah, it is, after 15, 16 years that I’ve lived here I’ve had a met some people from Ex-Yugoslavia. And we have a bond where I, a guitarist, and a singer from Bosnia. We’ve got a singer who’s half Dutch, half Croatian. And we also have a band member, a Dutchman. He’s playing cajón. Yeah, we just happened to find each other. I was… looking for a singer and I wanted a little towards traditional Bosnian music go in. But I ran into her and she likes a completely different style. And she’s got a guitarist too involved. We have in addition to that we love music we’ve found each other as human beings, too. We’ve found each other nice and we can work with get along very well. So besides making music we’re became very good friends, too. And it’s just a positive atmosphere when we see each other. When we’re together make music then then it really is a Have a nice evening. Or a pleasant day, we do it almost all day. That’s very nice, really super fun. That makes me happy. From this kind of people and that energy. That we all shine that’s real to set up something we do.

[i] What kind of You guys make music?

[i] We play familiar covers of R&B. But we also play, we also make music from Ex-Yugoslavia That’s where we all grew up and that’s all in us. Our cajonist he’s Dutch. That’s music you with emotions. And we can do that very easily and our bringing in emotions to make music. So if we have a concert give where very many people come from Bosnia or from Ex-Yugoslavia, then we usually play our songs. They’re from over there. And if we’re playing in a Dutch cafe, then we’ll play half-and-half or just english.

[i] And why is it important to you to be in such a band?

[r] You know it’s not, I wouldn’t say, important, but they’re people I have a thing with. Whoever I can be with who I can laugh with, with whom I spend a lot of energy can give and much receive energy. And that makes more special when you have people like this around you. That makes it very special. And that’s for me very valuable. You know, we’re really friends, too. Besides the fact that we’re making music, we’re friends too. And that’s easier, too. To put that energy into it. To do things.

[i] And performing for the Dutch or for a Bosnian public, does that matter? How do you see that?

[r] It doesn’t matter to me. I like them both. So for me that makes not so much out. Of course I like for people as well who can feel the same way I do. I like to play. But do I also for an english song to play. I like them both. I’m somebody who very often doesn’t make choices. He’d rather do things with it than that he repels things. So, yeah. That just belongs to me.

[i] And what’s that? That feeling, that feeling with music? Can you tell me anything about that? Feeling, yes. Yes that music brings to my attention all the good things. everything positive, everything. While I also make music like I’m sad. I take my guitar too, I don’t know, in tears or if I’m really a had a really bad day, when I’m tired, when I… I’m sad, if I’m sad. Then I can get my guitar too. That also helps me around my feelings let up come out or express oneself to be what I am. That I think it’s very important.

[i] And, what’s that “be who I am”?

[r] What’s that? I’m… I’m… didn’t come true either. What’s that “who I am”? I try to be who I am. I have, that’s also a song by a band that comes too from Bosnia. And it’s about you have to be what you are. You shouldn’t try to be someone else. Be who you are. That is the easiest thing to do. Don’t have to play, don’t have to acting, but being who you are.

[i] Why is that important to you?

[r] For me it’s very important. I’m really trying to are who I am. And yes, I’m not always easiest. I’m not always the most beautiful. I’m not always what others want to see. But I’m always who I am. That’s very important to me. I can’t play, I can’t acting. In real life I try to really be who I am.

[i] And how come, that so important to you?

[r] I’ll be honest. I felt me always a little different. I felt like a child and as someone from 12/13 year I always felt alternate sth. than my friends. And it doesn’t have to be on the positive side, but just made me feel different. I always felt different. Then, for example, one of my wishes when I was 16 to… [laughte

[r] I don’t know if I’m allowed to say that. Of course you can. When I was 16, I wanted to… My wish was how would that be to get to Amsterdam by hitchhiking and go smoke a joint there. Where you, where nobody makes or you do or you don’t. That was really my wish when I was 16 years old. With a friend to hitchhike to Amsterdam and there to smoke a joint on the Leidseplein so as not to hooves somewhere to be where no one sees it. I was thinking what kind of freedom is that, you know. Then you’d feel free. And for me it’s very important to feel free. Then I can be who I am. So I always felt a little different. I read a lot of books when I was 17/18. You wouldn’t expect that, but I read much more than my friends. And I know that when I was laughed at once that I thought then, you know, I’m not gonna tell you again that I… read books. And now I don’t read at all. Guitar is my book, so I’ll have a lot with my guitar. But at some level I felt like a little different. Now I still feel unlike others. We are all different from each other and every human being is unique. But occasionally feel I feel different. Be who I am.

[i] And in the Netherlands, in Rotterdam, do you feel enough that you’re could be? That you can be who you are? I’ll be honest with you. Since I… break up with my girlfriend I’m a little more myself. In a relationship you can’t always be who you are. You have to adapt a lot, too. And every now and then I’m struggling with that. And now I’m trying to… Now I feel like I’m a little more it’s me that I’m more can do my own things. That’s… also easier when you’re alone. If you’re in a relationship right now… I always felt a little, Yeah, not really who I am. And that’s normal, you know. You have to… adapt to others. Anyway… I think I’m here can be who I am. Definitely my job is my life, I live on my work. And then, there, I can be who I am. With my friends, I can be who I am. With you, I’ll always be who I am.

[i] And in a city like Rotterdam what’s it like to be yourself out there?

[r] There you lose very easy. I have to be honest with you, I feel I’m all Rotterdammer. I’m very proud of our city. You live in it, too. And every time I’m anywhere, I’m proud to say I live in Rotterdam. If I’m in Rotterdam, then I’m a Rotterdammer or if I’m in Veenendaal, I’m also a Rotterdammer. But that’s where you lose yourself quite, I think, is it’s very easy. It’s a big city. It’s a busy city. Everyone has a busy life. And that’s where I sometimes lose myself. Sometimes when I go to the city then go… For example, I have a feeling that I don’t enjoy the city very much. That I have some things pass by. That they pass.

[i] And why is that?

[r] I don’t know. That’s just, yeah, I don’t know. I also feel… Yeah, it’s very difficult to explain. Yeah, you lose your just in a city like this. I’d like a little more connected want to be with Rotterdam. I live all the way to the outskirts of Rotterdam. House where I live is really the last house to Zevenhuizen, so really last house. So there really lives on the periphery. Really out of town. But if I go to town. I like to go downtown. Then I’m not really… You know, I’d like to see some more of Rotterdam. I would like to see some more hear from Rotterdam. I’m missing a piece there.

[i] And what do you miss?

[r] What am I missing? Yeah, to to be more involved. To be more involved. I don’t know what things, but to be more involved. That’s also because of my busy live. It’s because of me, too, not just me, how would I put it, through our city. But it’s also because of me. By my busy life that I don’t have much connected to… I feel totally 100% Rotterdammer. I’m really proud of our city, what all of which have ever happened. I’ve also got a little in the looked at history, read it, yeah. To mean more for Rotterdam or more to be for Rotterdam, I could work on that.

[i] And what would that could be?

[r] Well, what could that be? You know… what, I’ve ever, for instance, tried to what you can do for yourself, you know. You have to try to do things yourself. You shouldn’t expect others to do things like that. I once did an action on the with our residents. In daytime activities we went every day around the Zevenhuizerplas we went dirty pick it up and clean it up, you know. That’s… for example, what you can do. And then I thought hey, that would I can do, you know. If we go for a walk making around pee. If we go for a walk also just take all that dirt with you. Put it in the bag and then help in a way to cleaner city or our environment.

[i] And do you think there’s enough room to do things like that in Rotterdam?

[r] That’s what you have to do searching, you know. You shouldn’t sit at home and expect something comes to you. You need more be active. Yeah, I think there’s a lot you can do. But then you have to show initiative, then you really have to take the initiative, I guess. I’ll do that. not much himself. I have to be honest with you. But, I’ve got, you know… You can make time, but yeah, I don’t make time to do that. But I’m very proud when I across the street in Rotterdam. Then there’s always something can see you new.

[i] Why are you proud of Rotterdam?

[r] Yes, I have proud of Rotterdam that it’s a working city. That it, for example quite different sth. here is if you go to Amsterdam is going. Amsterdam is a city where are a lot of tourists. There are also a lot of tourists, but Rotterdam is really a city that works hard. And Rotterdam, everything they went through in World War II, that you’re completely flat has been bombed. What has become of such a city. That’s really… I’m proud of that. Take pride in the fact that so many nationalities live in Rotterdam. Know you do. Like nowhere else in the world. You should be really proud of that. All those parts of Rotterdam. Say something, Old Port. Say something, Feyenoord, anything from Rotterdam.

[i] What do you think of the place in Rotterdam that you’re most proud of?

[r] Place where I most proud of ben. Yeah, I don’t really have one place. That’s a lot of things I like, For example, Delfshaven, old Delfshaven of Rotterdam. Erasmus Bridge, Cube building and new central station. Cockpit. You know, all that icons of Rotterdam. All that for me, makes Rotterdam. I don’t really have one part of the city. I like everything.

[i] And the Rotterdammers?

[r] Yes, Yeah, you know, that’s different. That’s different, too. Rotterdammers are also people who are adamant works that stand up for themselves. My world is something here smaller, I have have a lot to do with the same people. And because of that, I have little contact with really the whole of Rotterdam. But, uh… Yeah, Rotterdam is for me too people who work hard. Who can be happy but who also a little can be distant, have I also experienced in Rotterdam. But I think everyone’s proud that that he lives here and that he’s a Rotterdammer.

[i] What makes that pride? What’s that to you?

[r] Yeah, I guess with has to do with history. That Rotterdam always about Rotterdammers for themselves could coming up, just like the city actually People make a city as it is. And when you look back at that history, to all that kind of stuff than that human beings and not the city itself. People make city. As far as I’m concerned.

[i] Which place in Rotterdam is the most special, that makes you feel the most special?

[r] Where I most have a special feeling about it. You know, I think I have a lot of places I haven’t seen it in Rotterdam. I happen to be on Facebook. A friend sent me a picture of that said that’s in Rotterdam. I said that can’t be, I’ve never seen that before. That was a building where bicycles were hung, you know, I loved it. I thought that was striking. I’ve never considering. I have to go over there and see. But a special place for me… Yeah, Coolsingel, I think, that was for me when I first …seen and experienced time and time again, was “huge” to me, was huge for me. Then I thought it was Rotterdam. Yeah, that’s Rotterdam. That I’ve ever heard. And all those stories you’ve heard. I guess… that Coolsingel is a very special place. Next to this building. This is where I came to live when the building wasn’t finished. This is also quite a special place for me. I think maybe before Coolsingel.

[i] Can you get some tell you more about it?

[r] Yeah, that’s a building, a cultural centre of the Orion Foundation. Which is made of three parts: the first part is cultural center, the second part is a caretaker’s house, where I live, in this studio. And third part is house Amerlande, where 8 heavy disabled people living or people with a need for care. Yeah, that’s actually… This building is in a very special made room. Here was an old farm once. An old farmer had grown very old. He couldn’t take care of his animals. And he didn’t want this piece of land sell developer. He wanted something here special comes. And then pioneers of Orion by any chance in contact with came and met him. They have met him explained that they have a search for a place in Rotterdam true sth. come out special to stand, so this one cultural center. And the old farmer was the same and he said if I die then I want this piece of land sent to you and that it belongs to you. Then agreements were made that old trees and old orchard that it continues to exist. Farm, they got rid of that and do they have this building placed. And we still have… have below a scale which is made of copper. Everyone’s done their bit. Every employee and every resident has a blow with a hammer given on that scale. Even the old farmer has a stroke with hammer given, which is carved downstairs in the ground and it’s fixed. So that’s all here very special. How did people get to this piece of land? And that that farmer really didn’t want to give a developer sell it to something really special. That’s what makes it special. And certainly the people who live here. Our residents makes this place special. The plan was once to come here one building too places, where people meet. Where people interact with each other things can work together and in either case do things together. And that would be a yoga center or a meditation center. It’s used very often. By people who meditate or who in some other way being inwardly engaged. In this building you always feel very a lot of energy. Really a lot. You can always feel that. And everyone, I don’t know if you went through that when… you came here for the first time, everyone feels something here. They can’t but they feel something. And that’s what I feel still like me come in here. If I go on vacation and if I I always feel at home here. I feel a lot energy flows.

[i] Then what’s the most important thing moment in this house for you?

[r] Principal moment in this house is when I came to live here. At first, I didn’t believe that I was family would live here. Was very special. I’m still being asked by people who coming here for the first time. They ask me how you managed to come and live here? I’m really honored to be here. Yes, the most important moment has come to live here. When I moved and when I first night slept here. I felt really good.

[i] Why was that so special?

[r] Yeah, I always had something with this building. I could to design this house I could and I carried along. I designed some things myself because of what that would look like. That’s already for me very special. That I could think. That I could participate in design. And yes, it’s just at work liveable Pretty special. Especially with my neighbors here. Very nice.

[i] And in Rotterdam, what’s the most special moment in Rotterdam for you?

[r] Most special in Rotterdam at that time was I first came to Rotterdam. I had to go into town. I had to go to town and we were dropped when for our home. So I had to center find out, I had to get on the subway. I didn’t know anything about which way I had to go, had to I’ll sort it all out myself. My girlfriend was then pregnant and stayed home. Did I have to find the center myself and first impression when I came downtown when all those buildings were seen and how big which is Rotterdam. In the beginning I didn’t really like that. I felt, I always come from a small town. While I was studying in a slightly larger city. But as big as Rotterdam, that was really big for me and I felt a little alone with my girlfriend. I felt like a a little lost. In Rotterdam you can also feel lost, while people are warm, they have so is she, on the other hand, that they can be cold, too. That you can feel lost. That’s possible. You don’t have to. to be for everyone. And I felt a little lost in such a big city. That’s my first impression of Rotterdam.

[i] And how did that happen? Can you get over there tell you about what? Your life in Rotterdam?

[r] Yeah, go on, you learn Know Rotterdam. Then it gets easier and easier. Then you’ll see that it’s is not such a difficult city. That you do have access. To get to know him better. And you have to be open to learning other things. Then that relationship between me and Rotterdam is getting better and better. That it’s come to this point that I really feel all Rotterdammer.

[i] And how did that happen? That relationship with Rotterdam?

[r] How did that happen? Yeah, you know, I’ve got a lot events in Rotterdam experienced and I know Quite a lot about Rotterdam. I don’t know all the places, the Rotterdam I don’t know I want very much I’d love to meet you, I’d love to see you. But I think we’re whole have become good friends. After 20 years, I almost live 20 years in the Netherlands, that we’ve become good friends. I feel embraced me in Rotterdam. I feel at home.

[i] And what has taken care of that?

[r] What made you do that? Yeah, I think be open, you know. I think I’ve become more open to Rotterdam to me like Rotterdam to me. It’s, it’s, uh… Feel at home. Says enough for me. When I’m in Rotterdam I feel at home. Yeah, you do. I can’t really explain how did that happen? But it’s been through the years. All known places. You’re gonna store everything in your brain, that helps to make you a little easier deal with that. Or to feel at home.

[i] What does that mean? Feeling at home?

[r] For me it means that a lot. I’d like to feel at home. I feel like I’m on other places at my leisure. But this, here feel I really feel at home. While I do like opinion is you should around the globe feel at home. So not just in Rotterdam or not just in Bosnia. You have to I also find on the whole planet Earth you should be able to feel at home. But yes, this has something special. Rotterdam, I’ve got something special with it. It’s a special city. Anyway, it is.

[i] And what does that mean to you? If you feel at home somewhere?

[r] Yeah, that means a lot, that gives a lot of rest. If I wasn’t really comfortable here I’d definitely feel like moving. But to feel at home, that gives a lot of rest. Then you can are who you are. How about ? don’t play you. or acting. Then you can you are who you are.

[i] And in which parts of You lived in Rotterdam?

[r] I’m first couple weeks I am lived in Rotterdam South. That was an instance where you had to wait on a house you get in Rotterdam. We actually wanted to to live in Amsterdam. And in Leiden. And then there was no place. Glad in itself when I heard that we went to live in Rotterdam. We wanted to continue studying. We both didn’t graduate. So we… thought we were gonna pick up the study again. And that’s why we have to go to Amsterdam. Also because Amsterdam is a city, if you’re young then you want you’d love to live in Amsterdam. After that, I was very glad I didn’t has become. Because I… had children and then it would much harder to be there raising children. I will first say that we came by chance, I don’t think there’s any such thing as coincidence. That’s… just a reason we came here. And I’ll be honest. I’m coming. always back in my little world. When I saw Orion a main building we lived here in Zevenkamp, and I saw a building every day that’s getting bigger. What they’re building from our main building. And I felt from day one when that building saw I felt something about that. I thought what’s that special here. Building is special what it looks like. It’s built organically. And a lot corners and everything. And I felt something about it. I did. I had something with this building but I didn’t know what. Only after years, when I came for the first time for a job interview. Where was I? In this building. And I’m sure that this was meant for me to come here come to live and work here. That’s me a hundred percent sure.

[i] You’ve got a while first on South and then you went to Zevenkamp…

[r] Yeah, then we moved to Zevenkamp. Then we moved into, two houses in Zevenkamp, moved twice. And then we came here. So I don’t have much lived in Rotterdam. South and then Seven Camp.

[i] And if you’re South and Seven-Camp compares.

[r] I have to be honest with you. I wouldn’t south have so much to do at home feel like here. I’m too busy man. So I’m going to live in the South, I wouldn’t, such a busy street where I lived for a few weeks. No, I wouldn’t. choose to stay here.

[i] And why?

[r] When we came here was much quieter. Could I just, on the one hand feel a lot of freedom. That was a little newer, too. There were some old buildings. And here it was a Pretty new neighborhood. And it was safer, too, I have to be honest, to live here. Especially since there was a child on the way. I felt a little more at home here than in Rotterdam South. That’s just it. I felt me a little freer here. Newer, that sort of thing.

[i] And how was that, to here in Zevenkamp your children grow up to be seen?

[r] Yeah, that was fun. They had a nice school and we had also had many acquaintances through my work. My work that was in Zevenkamp. Pretty nice, but when I look back now what can I see. Your don’t enjoy much. I guess I’m not really enjoyed it a lot. I thought at the time enjoyed a lot. But if I now looking back, then I guess then you can also do a lot much more enjoyable.

[i] And how do you mean?

[r] I mean, that was for us also uncertain time. Shall we get the papers in the Netherlands? Could we stay here? And then… you’re always doing that. Instead to your to look to the future. To look at see what more you can do. What you can do more can do for yourself. Yeah, what more can you do for your future. You know, you’re hardly not working on it. You I’m more busy, Sure, with your kids, but also the situation that I’m not sure if I can stay here or if I have to… you go back to your homeland? Is that what you want? That has a lot of energy took, like, a lot of time. While in that time you could much more enjoyable.

[i] Does that include affected raising your children?

[r] Definitely. Yeah, for sure. You can really see to my children, to my eldest is much more uncertain than my youngest. I’m sure that also has to do with that we were also unsure when our eldest was born. That we are very uncertain were. Shall we stay here? Can we make a good living here? Can we be who we are here? Is it going to be possible to get a to build a future? When youngest came we already had a Dutch Nationality. And I’m sure that they also became more certain because we were sure. That they have some more of that energy than Martha. The oldest. I’m sure he is. When we got Martha we were also insecure. Shall we stay here? May we… stay here? How’s that going? She has as a child that Definitely got it. And now you see still on her. She about some things a lot doubt my youngest.

[i] And the youngest, how is there went along with the upbringing?

[r] Yeah, that’s at any rate with the second child you always do a lot better than the first child. If somebody says that’s not true, That’s true. With the first child you’ll learn. We were young parents. We were children, too, twenty-four. But with the youngest it was a lot went much smoother and much easier. It’s, I won’t say better. You got a lot with your first kid, too. you try your best, but you learn with your first child how you’re doing have to do second. That’s just the way it is.

[i] And how’s that, to put your kids on to feed in a city like Rotterdam? Yeah, you know. I was then haven’t been much occupied with that my children live in Rotterdam. You’re more with your world busy. Especially since you’re also from abroad. You try, you create a world where you feel safe. And then all those familiar then you’re gonna use it. Anyway, Rotterdam… You can be proud, but you can’t go through much of that. You’re not going through much. Rotterdam as a big city. I enjoy Rotterdam more now than I did then I was a new parent.

[i] How come?

[r] I’ve got a lot more time. I also go to Rotterdam more often. Yeah well, this is Rotterdam, too. But if we’re talking about Rotterdam then that’s a much larger area. I go to other parts of Rotterdam now. I just have more time.

[i] And that connection with you and your daughters. Can you get in there tell you about what? What’s it like? Yeah, like any parent, that’s up and down. I think I’m… have a good basis with my daughters. That I’ve laid a good foundation and that I taught them as a parent what standards and values are. Standards and values they vary, too. They will also have to do a lot have to figure it out. I think I have good laid the foundation for my children. And that they have a good become human. And now it’s going up and down. From an argument to a very happy moment where we go frolicking. We’ve been through a lot. And I’ve got a little less contact with my daughters because I split up I’m with my partner. We broke up. I have a little less contact. I always try a lot to have more contact with them. So do they. So that’s just the way it is. But we eat together a lot. They come to me. I wish she’d spend every night to be here, but that’s impossible. But it’s a good bond. So I… find basis, that’s very important. And my kids went to Free school gone, both of them. And that also has to do with with anthroposophy. There you also learn that every human being is unique and that you is going to develop in its own way. That you’re gonna find out for yourself, what’s right for you and what’s not right for you. Then you can make your own decisions. And you can do it your way. That’s very important.

[i] And why did you go for chose the Free School?

[r] I’m in touch with free school didn’t come here until I came to work here. But I’ve got a lot in a free school considering what our whatever parents or grandparents how they feel about that with certain things have been dealt with. For example with homeopathy. I think your grandparents and parents also use it a lot have made. Of the natural products, natural medicine. Our parents did. That’s not gonna be such as that mentioned here called homeopathy. But they also have a lot took advantage of that. And just that you’re allowed are who you are. That you Free School may develop in your own way. Yeah, that’s what attracted me. That’s what helped my kids, too. to have an opinion of their own. Or in your own way from child to child to become an adult. So that has made them the way they are. And you’re not a grade. There, you really are a child that’s seen. For example, my eldest daughter was in Free School. And my youngest daughter was a top athlete. Didn’t want to to Free School. She wanted to go to a top sports school. We said fine. We wanted you to go to Free School’s going but she wouldn’t. She’s a very spirited aunt, so she said no. I’m going. not to Free School. I don’t like that at all. I go to top sports school. She’s been in a class there where all of them are top athletes. Top sportsman of football, of tennis, of volleyball, I don’t know all about it. But she went with us very often to annual parties, to concerts, To Free School for our eldest daughter. And that’s got her interest aroused. That they’re on a at some point, in the second year of her middle-aged school said that she doesn’t feel at home in top sports school. They don’t see her as Anne-Marie, many teachers know her name’s not. And she thought that was very weird. She needed attention. She needed to talk to teachers. She wanted to are busy. She did very often things at school alone. Because she trained a lot she also had exemptions and then she went somewhere sitting in a room just writing keys or I don’t know all of them. Didn’t like them at all. Then she had asked herself if she gets to go to Free School. And then she’s still on Free School. So she did it herself… Oldest we have say made a way, but the The youngest has that all to himself. So she couldn’t in a school where, in a very large school, where actually your teacher doesn’t know your name. She didn’t like that at all. That’s impersonal. She wanted to go to a personal school. She’s totally blossomed on the Free School. So highly recommended. And there’s people out there all faiths, everything. And that’s just a very nice way. I really think so. Our working method also has a lot to do with the Free School to make.

[i] How do you mean?

[r] Yeah, the way it works, you’re actually going to see what a human being really needs. You don’t go around people view superficial. You’re really going a little deeper see what people need in order to develop. And like I said every human being is unique. And every human being has a certain image and it has a certain way you deal with him. Someone has autism and sb. is only physical handicapped. So you really should take a closer look at people. That’s what we’re doing here in our company. We do a lot with work therapy. And we have a lot of people with autism that we accompany. A lot of people that are spastic. That’s… another way of to escort. That’s a whole different view. We’re not regular institution. We don’t go in the morning wake people up. 3 minutes brushing teeth, 2 put some clothes on for minutes, 12 minutes breakfast. We do that on a very quiet, on a very different way. That’s very important to me.

[i] Why do you care? That view of life and that approach?

[r] I saw that for a moment that can help people. I really have with my own eyes. I’ve really experienced that, that it helps people. That people develop. If you really a problem with people see what his problem is. Then you can do something about it. Then you can help them. You develop himself in there, too. So I’ve also become a very different person. I’ve also developed a lot there. And I like working with people. I also counsel people. I also have personal conversations with people where I counsel them. About sexuality or about a whole other thing. Find very important to really looking at trouble.

[i] Can you tell me more about that? About your mentoring role with the people.

[r] I’ve got all those things besides that I’m said what I do. I also have a man that I’m guiding. Who’s also a psychiatric is a patient. It was very hard to find someone who wanted him escort. And then they asked me a year ago to deal with him. Because I’ve also counseled people who are also dangerous …who could be freaked out. And still before that I’m getting special training. I’m getting special training. Every month I become a little guided in there. How to teach people also overpower if necessary is without hurting them. And then they asked me to escort him and then I said yes when I didn’t want to. I thought it was very hard case, but I like that challenge. So that’s got me helped me say yes. And in the beginning that’s very difficult. He could go crazy too, he was not satisfied with anything and very easy to get angry. He could also hit. And now I’ve been working with him for eight years. Are we really a very good colleagues with each other. We’re real, it’s a little unprofessional, but I’d… say we’ve become a little friends. While I’m really doing my job and my private can get a divorce. But after eight years, just a few days ago. told me we’re going together for eight more years. We will. All those negative things almost got away from him. He’s not gonna be so easily angry. He can make his feelings Leave it to itself. He worked on that, too. And he can do a lot explaining how he feels. And I can do a lot more doing things when I know how he feels. He didn’t used to be able to tell me. And now you can. And that’s only because I gave him wanted to meet and because he was open to let me in. At watching him see what that’s like. But in doing so, I also developed myself. Am I also learned a lot. Was I also open to myself to give to him. And with him together. Doing things like that.

[i] And why did that pull you? Why was that a challenge for you to take on this?

[i] It was a challenge to try something. To see if I can do something change. If I can help somebody somewhere. In the beginning it was very difficult. Have I wonder how to do that. And also brought my work to my house. That goes not good. And then he’s angry, then he’s somewhere hit somebody, then they hit something or was angry with me. And yes, just a challenge. I’m right here. I can be who I am here. Now I’m coming again back at that. You can just do that on your own way to try things out. You can figure it out. It’s endless to find a way how you can make someone is going to supervise. Or how you’re gonna somebody’s gonna talk. How to talk to someone can accomplish some things.

[i] And the method that you then apply it like this, has that also to do with the teachings of this foundation?

[r] Yeah, that’s got to go through. Look, that’s an anthroposophical foundation. Anthroposophy, that’s a Greek word. If I’m right “anthropo is man and ‘sofie’ is philosophy or something. That makes that method strong. That it’s a supernatural world is open. Some find it all bullshit. But to get there a little deeper. I’m convinced that something is above us. I don’t know what that is. That this world also exists. That this will put us on some can also help things can make better people. You know, you don’t have to not to be a belief, but something. Everybody has to believe in something. that you can attach to anything buttons or hold on tight. That’s what attracted me. Was I was totally open to, I was totally amazed when I started working. I’ve worked with very special people. Of whom I really went to see how they treat people. That was very special to me. How much peace they bring, how they can spend hours with people be busy and guide and talk and even get beaten. But they won’t do anything with it. How they treat people that really got me so attracted that I still do.

[i] And all those things that you does here, has some kind of relationship with the past, with Bosnia? Does Bosnia affect what you do?

[r] Yeah, it sure has. Bosnia has influence on everything. I was born there, my roots come from over there. And I’m very proud where I come from. I feel like also Bosnian, besides the fact that I have the Dutch passport, have a Dutch nationality. Still feel me that I’m a Bosnian and and Bosnia will always be a whole particular area his, say, land. I think that even if I retire go, very often go there. I’m still going at least there once a year. My mother who lives there. My brother lives there. That certainly has something to do with it. It’s got made me human. What I’ve become. That Bosnia there’s a very big part to play. You bet your ass I am. There was I’m a little free, too. I always wanted to be free there, too. It was a little harder there to be free. Sometimes there were situations that it wasn’t fun because I took the liberty. Because I have long hair, because I wear earrings. That was with us a bit harder but

[i] Is it easier in the Netherlands to be free than in Bosnia?

[r] I think it’s a little easier yeah, think it’s a little easier, yeah.

[i] Why?

[r] You, you don’t think much what others think of you or think about things and and where I come from is it still important what your neighbour of or what your what some people around your friends, family what they think

[i] And what’s it like when Bosnian, someone from ex-Yugoslavia, and then do this job, to live here in Rotterdam?

[r] Yes my colleagues think that’s very special. And I know that my old manager said he was gonna have coffee with me sometime, and he said to me, yeah where you’re from that’s he said to me, that’s the future. From communities like this. Really? I’ll never forget he said where you’re from, Balkans really is the future. For, for, for this kind. This kind of philosophy, so to speak. And and I’d be very nice, you know, like something like this in my hometown to start. Have very often thought about that. Very often. That would, that would be very nice to have something like that there, over there, over there. Over there, starting there.

[i] Why?

[r] Because first, that way of working and how to deal with people cope. How, how, how you how softly How, how, in a special way dealing with people. And because that’s where people are in need of care, but they become but they don’t really like seen there by the family. You know, that would give me some people want schools, or want to want to show that they people are also very special. You know, you can care but how you do things lives You experience them in your own way and we have to understand that you’re a care request may yet are you a human being and you experience things in your own way. And we have to respect that. We have to… And with us, where I come from come I sometimes find that it’s not respected. How to be a person in need of care thinks about things. He should be able to have his own opinion. He must also be able to laugh at music. Then he’s not just laughing, that makes him happy. You know, this kind of things I’d like a little more wanting to pay attention. I’d like that very much.

[i] That’s your future dream?

[r] That’s definitely one of my future dreams, yes. I, I do every now and then certainly to, to the charities. I’m gonna… I’m going with my old manager of the Orion Foundation I’m also went to India where I taught guitar. and and three weeks at the closetless [closetless] children I just, with them, with their spent those three weeks. In one, in one house where you actually nothing fancy about it, you comes on a base. You eat just what they eat and you do what they and we make a lot of music. That’s actually a foundation who has a friend that a friend started. Many years ago. Did he start in India and he still does. He, he, receives or, whether he accepts closetless [closetless] children who don’t have have a good future because they’re closetless. [closetless] are. That’s the lowest level in India. And they’ve got to get there, they’ve got to… can live there. They need to learn English and they have to play the instrument. And then they have a chance for a future. And then go… I sometimes go there to teach there. As a volunteer. I love nice, I like to help people, I just through, through my employer or through my company many people have made donations. That we sent to Bosnia for people in need of care. So then we’re always somewhere, where help is needed, there is always somewhere what to do.

[i] How did that start you you’re so committed to the others?

[r] Yeah, I know. you don’t know that I have to be honest when I was young, I was also not really someone who’s done a lot of work. But, um, I think that, uh, that my parents have that very often done before. Anyway, anyway, you know that’s normal with us that you’re helping others somewhere. But I think that, that I this piece developed here. Here are a lot of people who need good goals work, here’s also become commonplace in the Netherlands many charities becomes a lot work on it. That I’m more here you have learned to do that. And certainly in the Orion Foundation. There’s a lot here people who travel, and who for good purpose very do a lot of things. So I guess that this piece here really, really blossomed.

[i] Do you have that with your daughters too shared? Do you see that with them too?

[r] Yeah, that one, they know that, too. They also do the occasional what, you know. That, that they know how important is to be a human being, or for, for your fellow man what, what to do. You know I’m from convinced that if we if we ever get out of here are on this one in this world. If we go to a go to another world. That everything that remains yours stays the good things what you did. What’s in front of you …fellow man has done. That’s where you’re remembered. Or that’s ever mentioned, and not that you have a lot of money or that you’re a big home, or that you have. I think that we on this world have been turned over, to do something for others, too.

[i] And then what is it most important to you …which you say you do now, That’s what I want people to do to me remember when I’m gone?

[r] You know, if I I would, yeah I’d really like what I just said. I’d really like find to this type to this kind of community, or this type of foundation in Bosnia open, because that that at this rate. That you really go see what what people need. I have. I just got out of Bosnia two months ago came back, I’ve seen a lot of things there. Um… I’ve known a lot of things, I have a lot can feel what people there need especially people with care needs. This is really something we must want it there. That it’s really something to open these kind of foundations over there. In order to do this in order to be able to say practice. To to be able to do there. I’d love to. If I ever get a big would win a prize, a destiny, then I would really then I really would. Then I really would.

[i] Yeah, nice dreams.

[r] Yeah, I hope so. as well. And guiding people, teaching people how how to do it this way. I learned, too. Am I also here learned, that would that would be my dream are. Lots of music, lots of a lot, a lot, a lot of er… A lot of therapies. Doing a lot, a lot of things outside. A lot with you, with your hands busy to… That’s really kind of therapy also for people who have no need for care. I think every one of us, every man has some kind of care need. Not that we’re all right have developed. So I guess this is to deal with your hands, to get to feel valuable people. To feel that you have something do sth. for society or for your fellow man. That’s what I think.

[i] And would you want to go back to Bosnia? or do you say I stay in Holland?

[r] I would I’d like to go to Bosnia for that. I would, I think that I could do that. I guess so. I was– almost moving to India, almost. With my then partner and with my kids, almost. We were offered to go to India live there and run a house like this and we didn’t but because our children were small. But I guess so. I guess I will someday, that I would.

[i] But you chose to stay in the Netherlands for you kids?

[r] Yeah, I chose to stay in the Netherlands because we also just few years lived here in the Netherlands and, Yeah, uncertainty, you know well, yeah, you don’t know. Yeah yeah yeah you think a lot after we do isn’t it? Yet decided to stay here. But it also seems to me very nice in India to start a house like that. And with your kids and, and freedom, eh, that’s also eh… It’s also a kind of freedom, if you can do that.

[i] And you raised your children here anyway Hey, you guys have decided to stay here. That upbringing of your children, do you have that done as a Bosnian, as an ex-Joegoslave… as a Dutchman?

[r] No, you know, how we did something that you brought with you. The way you are. Then you’re gonna give your kids give it like that. And my my children have grown up. We always have mother tongue at home spoken, so Bosnian. We’ve always done at home. And my children speak, speak fluent Bosnian both. Really very good and turns out she’s going to school have been that they’ve learned that really very good there I’m very happy to. That they both speak Bosnian. My kids are crazy on Bosnia, both of them. Definitely the oldest. They always like to go to Bosnia. They would like to go to Bosnia once a year. And, uh… And beyond our, our, our home is us Dutch spoken. And I think you should move in, too, that you have to be in society should just be able to turn around for a while. We always have, in-store or talked somewhere we’re always Dutch. But at home, we always spoke our mother tongue. And we still do. A little mixed right now. But we still do if we when we’re home, we’ll talk Bosnian. And, you know, my kids think that too very nice that my children are Bosnian, then they can talk to family members talking. Then I don’t have to do anything you, they can do it all by themselves. My youngest also goes at Christmas to Bosnia itself because they hasn’t been in the summer. So it’s very important to them, to go to Bosnia, to, to, to… They feel at home there, too, They really like that. I know that oldest once to me and asked my ex-girlfriend why did you guys from Bosnia came here? Wasn’t that really a chance to stay there? And then we had to explain to her that that it’s really not good was to stay there. But they think nice, so I’ve got I think I that I raise my children have more like a Bosnian than a Dutchman. But I’ve got them all I can, all possible, all possible Dutch, so to speak, if you can put it that way, gave things away, for himself, for himself, um, feel at home here, too. To burgle well in, in. I’m also a bit Dutch become, fully adapted to To all those rules, I love eh, om, om, I don’t like of rules, but yes. Sometimes, sometimes from time to time you’re in on it, sometimes not, but but, but, uh, yeah… Yeah, yeah, I think I’m more a Bosnian nurtured my children than a Dutch one, but yes it is, you know that. I’m 24 years in Bosnia lived and There was no other way.

[i] And what’s the most important thing Dutch what you gave you daughters?

[r] Own opinion to to have, to have, to have for the sake of the sake of the sake of the sake of the sake of the sake of the sake of the sake of the sake of the sake of the sake of the sake of the sake of… Here you can have be more what you are. There’s nowhere to be ashamed and say where you’re from and where your parents and your grandparents are from. You must be proud to be from Bosnia. And you should also be proud that you live in Holland. That’s it. too, it’s also your second that’s actually their first homeland, and Bosnia was just my first homeland. They can always say that where, where their parents are from. if anyone asks: Oh [respondent’s name] , where that last name come from? That you’re proud to say that your parents from Bosnia. And that’s what they always say. My daughters are very proud of where, where, where we’re from. They don’t have any, don’t bother to. They don’t feel foreigners here, were born and raised here. But are proud of where their parents came from come.

[i] What are your daughters called?

[r] Oldest who’s 19 year, her name’s Martha. And youngest’s name is Anna-Marie.

[i] Why did you go for chose those names?

[r] I, we’ve been chosen for those names because they’re international. They can, you know I have really then thought about the fact that you, too They are, a little Bosnian names. You’ve got Martha’s in Bosnia, or in ex-Yugoslavia it doesn’t matter. And so did Anna-Marie. And she thinks, for the youngest for Anna-Marie they always think she’s Annemarie. But she’s Anna-Marie. So then they can here Anna-Marie but then they can also there’s Anna-Marie. I think that’s for kids which is easier if I’m honest. That’s why they are got those names. And the youngest has of, of my ex-partner’s sister’s name. And I named the youngest one. And that’s also with us or with them to make grandparents. That, that’s all four grandparents there in her name. That’s also a a meaning of.

[i] If I’m so, um, all in all take what you’re doing, you are actually very much engaged in being yourself, conveying that to you daughters but also transfer to Yes, the occupants of this house. The whole doctrine you’re, you’re putting your whole very much in favor of others. Can I sum up so that your contribution to the city of Rotterdam so that’s being there for the others and make sure that they also shape oneself and be themselves. Yes, you can. You can see that. You can see it like this. Being yourself and and rather with others together to, to conclusions until, until things come together. Yeah that I’m at such a special place, and that I live the I say again, the best neighbors from Rotterdam. Yes, it is, You can call that, you can call that maybe as a contribution. That could be. That I, that I, together with residents things do things. That I’m gonna that makes me better, Go make Rotterdam better. Rotterdam also special go make ya. That, that’s possible.

[i] In what way Does that make Rotterdam special?

[r] Yeah on the, anyway, makes such a foundation makes Rotterdam special. I really do. That that, we make own products. That that’s that on our our logo also says, uh that we’re in Rotterdam. And that, that’s a little contribution to society. I think so. I do. We are well known in, near and from people recognize our people and our products. And, and, and, yeah, that’s kind of some kind of, sure contribution in a better society. Or or for Rotterdam.

[i] Have you ever thought you’d be now huh, after so many years in Rotterdam who have been able to make a contribution the first moment you came in here?

[r] No, no, no there I have I didn’t think about it at all. I thought I’d have to be honest I thought I’d apply for a job and then I’ll stay for a while until I find a better job, but… I’ve had so many chances to get somewhere to work differently. I don’t have any not at all think about it no. This, this is just at, here I may be who I am. In my work I have I also have a lot of freedom. That’s just what, that can I’m the best at what I do. Then I can do my best, then maybe I can I’m gonna try harder because I have a lot of freedom. In my company, I have. I have very a lot of freedom. Can I have a lot of things Doing my own way, in my, I’m allowed to plan my own schedule. I’m very happy. I am. I don’t like that you’ll be placed somewhere and of you working from then until then. I can’t do that. That’s not like me. That’s why I sometimes in my private life some problems that I have so much freedom want me to have. That I want me to have with little things I can feel I’m doing, that I can’t breathe properly. That I.., I need some space somewhere.

[i] And in Rotterdam, you can the freedom to be topheid experienced?

[r] Yes, I think so, Yes, Rotterdam is metropolis. You can be who you are here. Yeah, I guess so. Yeah, I think so. I also feel free in Rotterdam. I feel free too.

[i] If you think back to the interview now. We’re talking about had a lot of topics, about your contribution, huh, of the there are for others, together being, doing things together. Do you have anything else you think, gosh, that would… I really want to tell you? For this project, what else did not come up but what’s really important to you, huh? Rotterdamish. A part of my life, of my life story.

[r] Yeah, that’s it, it. What I could bring give it to Rotterdam That, for example, I can specifically say about refugees I’ve been there and I know that I know how that can be. Rotterdam can do that seem very cold. If you come from somewhere and are here for the first time and. Then that can seem cold, while not that’s how it is. But maybe there’s something there We used to come here all the time. That’s a city that attracts it is anyway the Netherlands is a country. Maybe because there’s something somewhat what arrange things better for the people to feel at home sooner. With me it took one year before I get home began to feel. That could be much sooner. Maybe that’s something to Rotterdam, to get some trying to do it. In order to get that kind let’s not forget people embrace and and give love and and say that you then that you’ll be full. It doesn’t. Rotterdam that’s what people do, but… That’s how it can be placed.

[i] And what made it come that you felt that cold?

[r] Yeah, it’s because of our insecurity, but also also uncertainty of other people, in order to to get acquainted, to to come into contact with to communicate to, you know. That I’m a very open person, I make very easy friends, I make very easy knowledge of people. Me, me, but that was it’s kind of hard at first to get here, to do here. Yeah, that’s that. That’s normal, but I think there’s something there can be done. To make it easier or sooner or more feel at home here.

[i] And what were you missing there most of all? Contact. Contact, or what more for see what people need. You know, just contact. To on, that’s just a little more to make some more contact. From both sides. But, from Rotterdam for sure. To get some more over there. In order to get to people sooner involve things. To involve people to make people feel. You know as a fugitive comes here and you’re so lost. Then she can lose herself, then you can also bad on the road, you know. That wire is also very small. You can do that, or go your good way or go your bad way on. That wire is very small that you can go that way. I think that very often the people who come from abroad they’re going bad. Because it’s a little easier. Or because, because Yeah, easier because you. That’s where you get seduced. Through that cold, through. Maybe distance or through by letting more people involved, you know. That, I’ve experienced that myself. I had When I got here I could also get bad choose path, to bad out on the road. Or not. I didn’t have that in me Luckily, I didn’t choose that. Have chosen the right path and I had kids and then you have to. Then you don’t just go bad, but that happens all the time. Do I have a lot of people who have chosen a bad path. Because she’s not at home …because they… Then they get there, they think they’re there be embraced. But that’s actually is, appearances deceive you know, that’s not true.

[i] That’s very good advice. Yeah, That’s for sure. Something you missed.

[r] Rather embrace people and make you feel at home.

[i] Okay, then I’ve got a lot of heard about you. Yeah, I want to… thank you for that. That you wanted to participate in this project and your life story in all its colors wanted to share. Thank you [respondent name] .

[r] Thank you, too.

[i] I hope you liked it a little bit. Yeah, I liked it a lot. At first it was exciting but, I was relaxing so fast That wasn’t a problem. Thanks to you, too, for… have chosen me to be a part of this.

[i] Well it was definitely worth it.

[r] Well, thank goodness. Thank you.

[r] You too