Situation: A major catastrophe has devastated the infrastructure of the United States. My family and I are among the survivors and we are being evacuated to another country. We are only allowed to take 3 small items but upon arrival discover that only one item can be kept.
Question: What would you take and why?
Response: Well, after careful consideration I think that the 3 items I would take would be my scrapbook, family videos and our family emergency evacuation notebook. I have several scrapbooks that I have created of my family with several themes but the one I would take would be the one I created for my grandmother years ago. This scrapbook is special for my family because it shows our family history from my great-grandparents to my second cousins. It includes many of our family members and stories about them and from them. I love having family get-togethers and documenting them on video so I think that I would have to quickly grab my video stash because it shows some our greatest family moments. The final item, our emergency evacuation notebook is our family resource so it would be necessary. Upon arrival and being told that I am only allowed to keep one item I think it would have to be the scrapbook. We are basically starting our life over so we have utilized the emergency evacuation plans. As for the videos, if I could stash a few I would simply because of the memories but I think that the scrapbooks would be a great way to keep a written record of my heritage. I think that I would devastated after being through a major catastrophe, forced to leave my home with only 3 small items and then having to narrow those 3 down to one. I can't imagine having to completely restart my life in a whole new place. On the other hand I would be fortunate to have my immediate family there with me to start over.
Insight: Sadly enough my family was in a similar situation in which much of our family history was lost. It wasn't as major as being forced to leave the country but there were other issues that my ancestors had to deal with. One of the worst examples was the courthouse, which contained all the town's official records including birth and death records, were destroyed in a courthouse fire but only the records of the African American citizens were destroyed. So our family history has major gaps in it that my grandmother and I have been working to fill for over 5 years now. As I thought long and hard about this assignment it became obvious that we, as a family, need to work harder at finding ways to preserve our culture. It also made me think about the children in my center that are immigrants and how hard it must be to move here and leave everything behind. How do you maintain yourself in a world that is not your own?