Split WWII Refugee Tales: A Diary for Puse (Part IV)

Total Croatia News

Updated on:

Part IV of A Dairy for Puse continues on January 27, 2016, the latest installment of a mother’s diary to her daughter from 1919 – 1953, capturing a moment of Dalmatia and Dalmatian exile in history.

Start at the beginning with Part I here.



The Italian occupation of Zadar ended by the very specific anomaly, when just the city itself (without any hinterland) would become an Italian territory. Although it was our little “Ardito´s” working place, she had to move with the whole set of our Zadar clerks to the Croatian territory. We were sent to Split, but because there were no habitable flats in Split right after the war, we had to live in Vranjic for a period of time.

Vranjic, “Piccola Venezia or LIttle Venice”, as the Split autonomists called it, truly is a village, which looks like it is drowning in the sea with all its compact houses, because only a small peninsula is connected to a narrow strip of land to the mainland.

Our house on the coast was a bit more spacious. A tall palm rose in front of it with a vegetable garden on the west side. For little Puse, it was a paradise on earth, where she was able to move freely, twitch grass, pick flowers and catch butterflies, which would never let her catch them.

Vranjic small kids would gather in front of the fence and stared at Puse, who was the centre of their attention. They wouldn´t dare to get closer, so they would just look at her and call her and she definitely wanted to get to them. Finally, one adventurous boy broke through the wooden door and all the others followed him. Puse found herself in a real kids heaven.

When, there was finally a place in the town for us – the golden freedom ended and a new city life started, clerical life again.

The former Zadar diary for small Puse has fallen into oblivion by the new times, new friends and new impressions. Four years have passed and the little baby Puse has become a vivid little girl – when one day, Ivo and Braco get an idea to test her intelligence – offended by her mother always praising her and saying how she would be a lot smarter than they are. She is five years old and they give her a broom, put her at the bottom of the stairs and order her to sweep them. She was so happy that her brothers would entrust her with such an important job and steps on the first step to sweep it. Despite the broom being too large, she being too small, she still managed to sweep the step well. Then she moved to the next step above the first – and they both rowdy burst out laughing and looked triumphantly waggish at their mom.

Read more


Subscribe to our newsletter

the fields marked with * are required
Email: *
First name:
Last name:
Gender: Male Female
Please don't insert text in the box below!

Leave a Comment