I don't know how to tell you… there was no work, and one had to live, right?
Anica Kapiteli in conversation with Anamarija Batista on Lastovo island, in the summer of 2019. Anica is a now retired inhabitant of Uble. The conversation was videorecorded by Goran Škofić.
AK: And so… Our people came afterwards. And then some went away. Not some, but many went away. The military came. And the reconstruction of Yugoslavia came. For a while, foreigners were not allowed here. And that was really difficult because there were people who were born here, and kids who went off to school in Korčula, they couldn’t come back here, because they didn’t have... There was this boy, Encika’s boy, Bartul, he jumped from a ship right into the sea, to get home. The military was here. There built these barracks and put signs saying “no trespassing”. But you know what? My husband was a port captain and we spent 18 years away. So we didn’t experience all that back then.
AB: And you got this house afterwards?
AK: It went like this. We lived in Vrsar for three years. My husband got a job there, but then the job was cut and he had to choose where to go next. There was a vacancy on Silba island, so he was transferred there. We spent seven years there, on Silba. Seven years. Kids went to school there. And after that, when there was a vacancy on Lastovo, he wanted to come back here. To be honest, I wasn’t happy about it. Yes, I love the island, every time I was coming back, my heart was pounding like crazy… I love it, but it’s difficult to live here. It’s not easy, especially for kids. You have a primary school here, but after that, you have to send them away. They’re with you until they turn 14, and afterwards they’re gone. We came back because he wanted it, I wouldn’t have come back. So we came here, continued our lives here. And that was it.
AB: So, there was no high school on the island?
AK: No. There was no high school. But the things were working, somehow, unlike now. And here, in Ubli, there were so many kids because many young military officers lived here, with families. The place was full of kids.