"It was exciting but worrying leaving family behind because I had a big family. First of all, I knew the language problem I was going to face, when I came, he was living in a flat, I thought in England the houses were made of glass"– part one of episode two on the Gup Shup podcast is all about how life was for Shameem, who migrated from Pakistan to the UK after her marriage.
Gup Shup podcast is a series of conversations between Daniyal and those from the first generation. Its first episode is with his grandmother (Shameem) who he lovingly calls ‘Nanu’. The conversations take us back in time to when Nanu was a young girl "We were six sister and three brothers, my grandmother lived with us helping my Mum and we thought she was the one who brought us up". Describing the area Rahim Yar Khan where she grew up in pre-partition, she says "It was a close community if someone was sick people would come and see you".
The 25-year-old from South London thought of the idea after losing his grandfather in February last year. He says, “I had the privilege of growing up with my grandparents and spent a lot of time with them, but I didn’t know about their past when my grandfather passed away it was the triggering point for me – so much history and experience gone, which I don’t know about”.
More than just a series of conversations of fond memories, Gup Shup serves as a bridge between the first and second generation and aims to bring together two very different identities from the same background. The podcast also allows those from outside of the South Asian community to get a better understanding of the community as opposed to the way the South Asian diaspora is seen through mainstream media. “Some of the stuff spoken about can be considered taboo, such as divorce, so it is about normalizing conversations about certain topics. Divorce is a big one, a lot of people go through it, but brushing those type of conversations under the carpet won’t do anything, we need to start being open and have these conversations,” he told Asian Voice.
Daniyal originally recorded the conversations solely for himself, but he realised the power and change it could bring. Split into three segments, the podcast series takes us back to childhood for the first generation, migrating to the UK and becoming figureheads of their family. The podcast is a more so intimate and personal audio journal allowing its listeners to imagine and contemporize life back then. For those who don’t have the privilege of growing up with their grandparents, it provides some understanding of how life was for the generation before them. “I think it’s important to have these discussions with the younger generation because they think they know everything, but we’ve lived it already and can help them make the right decisions in life and learn from our mistakes”, says his Nanu.
On the next episode of Gup Shup, Daniyal speaks to his late grandfather’s best friend Jameel. “The male experience will always be different to the female experience of the generation, it will be the same topic but a completely different angle”, he told the newsweekly.
Hoping his listeners are able to take valuable lessons from the podcast, he said “We can learn so much from the elder generation and give them the time that they deserve, it’s really important, the only thing we are up against is time. We don’t know how long certain people have long left and that’s the thing I am pushing out is for people to go and have those conversations”.
To rewind back into time, listen to Gup Shup on https://soundcloud.com/gupshuppodcast it is also available on Apple podcast.
More than just a series of conversations of fond memories, Gup Shup serves as a bridge between the first and second generation and aims to bring together two very different identities from the same background.