Miluše Babjaková

* 1941

  • "Where I was employed, we sang songs. All kinds of Slovak, Czech, Russian, Rutherian all kinds. And after the ninetieth year, I attended some birthday party or something. But there were a lot of us there. And someone started singing Czech songs. And one there. And even one of the executives. We don't have our own songs that we have to, this. That was one thing and then another thing. People who expressly, because the railway was based in Prague. People who expressly overtook the officials on the Prague Ministry of Transport, they were at one time. Well, they forgot everything." And actually, from day to day, when you wanted to go back to your family again, you simply had to get a passport. It was at the beginning, until it normalized at least a little. How did you even perceive that you wanted to go somewhere to visit your parents? I don't know if they were still living at that time or just with the family?(documentarian) "You know what? It was stupid, but the atmosphere was such that we said to ourselves, it can't last long like this, that something has to be done about it. Because you went to the Czech Republic and at night, at midnight, you were woken up and people who they lived here for decades. So we kind of suspected that it wouldn't be for a long time, and it wasn't long either."

  • "We were right there at those Olšany cemeteries. That's where Vinohrady was bombed and I remember that we ran to the cellar a lot. I even had a cot there. We ran a lot, but I only remember that one bombing . That was terrible after dad went out and everyone went to see what happened. Because it was Vinohrady that was bombed the most after that." And was that an alarm before? "Alarms, I mean today I have those sirens in my ear and when I hear a siren on TV. I had it in my ears for a long, long time and I was afraid."

  • "I remember, we lived on Božena Němcová on the tenth floor. And there, of course, Furča wasn't there yet, and there was that one road, from Košická Nová Ves to that bend. And there were tanks all over there. And other things too there were tanks on Božena Němcová. My daughter was five years old and still hanging around there. Then a neighbor told me that Erika, my daughter, give me a badge, that's how they talked to the Russians there. And then, when I was thirty On August, she gave birth like that, I don't know if one or two tanks. The Russians were standing by the Czechoslovak radio station, and there is a window of the delivery room right there, so I had it with their escort as well."

  • Full recordings
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    Košice, 20.03.2023

    duration: 02:02:35
    media recorded in project Stories of the 20th century
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I still have the sound of sirens in my ears

Witness Miluše Babjaková during eyd recording in 2023
Witness Miluše Babjaková during eyd recording in 2023
photo: Photo by Post Bellum SK

Miluše Babjaková was born on May 29, 1941 in Prague. The parents, mother Olga Retzmanová and father Jozef Kratochvíl, came from other Czech cities, but went to Prague for work and studies, where they met. During the Second World War, the family lived in Prague’s Vinohrady, where they witnessed the bombing that took place near where they lived. Miluše spent her childhood and school years alternately in Prague and in the border town of Česká Lipa, where they moved for several years because of her father’s work. In 1950, they went back to Prague, where she finished elementary school after the socialist coup. In 1955, she entered the secondary higher economic school in Mladá Boleslav, where she commuted every day by bus. After graduation in the spring of 1959, Miluše met her future husband, Vojtech Babjak, who was from Košice. She fell in love and moved with him to Košice in July of the same year, where she got married and lives there to this day. In Košice, she worked in the accounting department of a military hospital until 1963, when the couple had a daughter, Erika. Miluše and her sister often visited their maternal aunts, who were displaced to West Germany after World War II because of their German origins. On August 30, 1968, Miluša’s son Vojtech was born. After a short maternity leave, she started working again at the railway, where she worked her way up to the position of economic deputy. After the change of regime and the disintegration of Czechoslovakia in 1993, she experienced certain manifestations of hostility of the Slovaks towards the Czechs who remained living in Slovakia. Miluše retired in 1995, but she worked at the railway hospital in Košice for another five years. At the time of documentation, as a retired person, she enjoys the presence of her family and is actively involved in the management and activities of the social club of the Czech Society in Košice.