The way home
A photo story prepared within the framework of the "Çəkinmə, çək" training
This is the Umid settlement of Garadagh district, located 40 km from Baku. Although it was previously created for internally displaced persons, now it is only inhabited by people who cannot afford to buy a house in the city centre. Ladies with active lifestyles also live in this settlement. I am one of those ladies.
I don't like where I live because it is far from Baku. It seems like a forgotten village. There is a pharmacy, three schools, and a kindergarten. Life seems to stop after nine o'clock in the evening.
Our house is located a short distance from this bus stop. It is near the store, 100 metres away.
It takes 16 minutes by bus from our house to the park. Since there are no buses after 8pm, we either have to go to the park in the heat of the day or take a taxi back. There is no place to walk in the tree's shade nearby.

Since there is no park in the neighbourhood, we go to the seaside boulevard (on holidays or when we get our salary). I work as a teacher in a preschool community project for 157 manats, and my husband is a worker.
Houses are very close to the railway and we hear the sound of trains 24 hours a day.

This train track is a very dangerous place. Last year a 4 year old child was killed by a train; it would be great if there was a fence.
This street leads to my house. Imagine these roads when it rains. I am a teacher and whether I like it or not I have to go to work in all kinds of weather.
But our neighbourhood is very well lit at night, that's the positive aspect.
Now, my family and I live in a small house in the settlement. My daughter is six years old and my son is four. We also have two parrots, Ricky and Tinky.
When they sleep, they put their heads under their wings. When the female lays eggs, the male feeds her and takes care of her.

I like flowers too, but I'm more interested in cacti. Everyone thinks it is thorny, but to me, it is mysterious, it loves the sun, it protects us from computer rays.
To some, such a life may seem boring, but to me it is a great achievement. I have experienced many difficulties in my life - both psychological and physical violence, serious illness and the rejection of my relatives. Yet I have overcome everything by myself. I have achieved everything with my own mind and I am proud of it.

If I say that my husband and I understand each other, it would be a lie, we just know each other well and let each other be. He is a quieter person and I am more lively and active. He finds it strange when I laugh out loud or sing. Sometimes I want to go and have some tea in the park (there is a tea house there), but my husband says, ‘let's have it at home, what's the difference?’.

Also, I love to sing karaoke. Sometimes I wake up at 2 am and sing until 4 am.
I don't expect anything from anyone, I do everything myself and I achieve my goals. Now I work as a teacher for intellectually disabled kids in which I participate in projects related to education and gender equality.
Lamia Gurbanova

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