April 30th, 1992

Dear Diary,

I still haven’t heard from my friend at all. Mother told me this morning we’re leaving the city. When I asked her why, she said she was afraid the serbs were going to try and take over, and she didn’t want to be there when they did. she said we’re going to go to Gornji Vakuf, up near the Lasva Valley. Its at least a week’s drive to get there. She says it’ll be safer there because the Croats aren’t at war with us like the Serbs are. I don’t want to leave, Sarajevo’s always been my home. I’ve never lived anywhere else. But.. its not like I have much choice in the matter.

April 31st, 1992

Dear Diary,

We’re leaving today for Gornji Vakuf. I talked my mom into taking me over to my friend’s house. He wasn’t there.. but his mother, Freya, was. I asked her where he had gone, and she said he had left  a week ago. He had ran off into the hills to join the Serbians that were shelling the city. When she told me that.. I couldn’t speak. I was too shocked. I went outside to our car and asked my mother, then went in and told Freya we were leaving, then asked her if she wanted to come with us. She looked up at the hills where the guns, for a moment, were quiet. Then she looked back at me and nodded, a single tear in her eye. I gave her a brief hug, before telling her we would wait for her to get her things. I can’t believe my friend would do that to her. I can’t believe he would be willing to join the men shelling his own home, and leave his friends and family behind.  Does the fact that hes a Serb mean he has to hate us? Are we really that different?

May 6th, 1992

Dear Diary,

We’re only a few hours away from Gornji Vakuf now, I can see it off in the distance. We ran into a few checkpoints on our way here, but thankfully, They were all Bosnian. I can’t Imagine what would have happened to us if one of them had been a Serbian checkpoint. The things they’ve been doing to Sarajevo… lets just say, I’m glad I don’t have to watch. I.. just hope theres a Sarajevo left to come back to when this is all over.

May 12th, 1992

Dear Diary,

We’re all settled in now.. mother’s renting an apartment here. Gornji Vakuf’s a lot smaller than Sarajevo.. but.. at least its quiet. I don’t have to listen to explosions as I try to sleep, wondering if the next one will be in my building. The Croats here are part of the Croatian Defense Force, a paramilitary group. They are a lot more friendly to us Bosniaks than the Croatian Gov’t is. Everyone’s on edge though… they’re all worried about what’s going on with the Serbians out west.  The tension in the city is so thick you could cut it with a knife. But… at least there isn’t war here. I never thought i’d say this, but I’m glad we left Sarajevo.

May 29th, 1992

I head on the news today that the Croatian Government met with the Serbian Government. I don’t know for sure what they talked about. Hopefully.. the Croatians are trying to convince the Serbs to stop attacking us. After all… the Croatians are our allies. If the Serbs won’t listen to us, maybe they will listen to the Croatians. I just want this terrible war to be over with and for things to go back to the way they were before. I’d rather be part of Yugoslavia than have this!

June 12th, 1992

Dear Diary,

The Croatians crossed into Bosnian Territory today. I was afraid they would do this. Looks like they weren’t trying to stop the Serbs after all! I thought they were our allies, our friends! But… everyone seems to be turning on their friends and family nowadays. First my friend, and now the Croats.I still wonder about him sometimes. I wonder if he felt he did the right thing after all, or if he regrets it. I hope hes okay… The only thing that could be worse for Freya than what he did would be him getting hurt or dying. II hope he remembers who his family really is, and returns to us someday.

June 23rd, 1992

Dear Diary,

Its started all over again! The Croatians have surrounded the city and are shelling it! We left Sarajevo to escape this hell, not have it come back! I can’t look out of any of the windows in the apartment without seeing a burning building or an explosion going off. People are screaming and running around in a panic. I can’t leave the house for fear of getting shot or having someone try and loot our belongings. Every now and then I see a squad of soldiers run out towards the hills where the guns are. I haven’t seen any come back. I don’t see any way out this time, I may join up and help them.  I’ll give it a few days before I do though.. maybe we’ll be lucky and they can break the siege. I just hope my family and I get out of th… (The writing scribbles off incoherently, eventually forming a long line down the page. No other journal entries have been found inside the ruined apartment.)

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