Storyteller: Stories of My Assyrian Ancestors
By Warda Zia Warda
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(AINA) -- Reflecting back to the 1950's much has changed in the last several decades. Today, we are able to freely share information, have numerous sources of entertainment and the human connection is all the ever closer.

Growing up in the Northern Village of Lower Chaqala in Ashur Land ( Iraq ) -- province of Barwari Bala, books were rare, televisions and radio were a luxury. We often found ourselves as children gathering at our village home to listen to stories of our Assyrian ancestors as narrated by my late mother, Helen Adam. My mother gathered many of the women in the village on the flat garden roofs under the moonlight and bright stars in the valley surrounded by the Metina mountains for an evening of delightful adventure.

Some tales took our imaginations to far away places and as children we would eagerly await day after day to hear the rest of the stories. Storyteller, Stories of my Assyrian Ancestors is a homage to those stories retold generation over generation as I recall them.

In 1996 I started a small project when I began writing these stories to keep in my personal collection. As I began to share them with family and friends, I learned the importance of publishing these stories as they carried many life lessons and was a part of our Assyrian identity that would have been otherwise lost.

Warda Zia Warda.

My mother, Helen Adam.

Along the banks of Khabur (Tigris) River, 1958. My father (4th from the right) and I (2nd from left)

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