Dimitra, an Albanian woman living for 26 years in Greece, has told another story.
She tells as a story about the first house they rented in Thessaloniki.
Preparing her family to come to Greece she was always talking about the unique light of Greece. After they arrival they rented a basement where the windows were only 50 centimeters high. The only things they could see were feet of the people walking in front of their window and car tires. Her son who was six years then asked her if that was what she meant about the unique light of Greece.
They stayed six months in this basement and then they moved to a new apartment full of light!
Dimitra emigrated 26 years ago from Albania to Greece.
She tells as a story from the first years they were living in Greece. Her daughter went to high school and Dimitra worked as a house cleaning lady.
One day Dimitra was on the bus going home after a long day at work. She was very tired and almost sleeping, as on a bus stop six or seven beautiful girls got in the bus – and one of them was her daughter.
As soon as she understood that her mother was in the same bus the daughter tried to get off because she was with her Greek friends and did not want to present her mother who was a poor migrant lady cleaning houses.
Her daughter tried to step down the bus as the door closed and she fell down and hurt herself. Dimitra did not move to go close to her so not to be recognised as her mother…they never discussed it.
Aida is from Albania. She came to Greece when she was fifteen years old, studied in high school and then went to a vocational school to become a hairdresser.
Aida got married very young at her seventeen and has two grown up children.
She is now living for 21 years in Greece
Aida tells a story about her name, because she is very proud of it.
Her name was given to her because in Albania during that time she could not be baptized and get her Christian name that was Charitini after her grandmother.
When she came to Greece and still until now as soon as she is asked her name, the first question is where are you from? so from the beginning she says my name is Aida and I am from Albania.
When Aida came to Greece, she was amazed by the lights on the streets and the houses and the cars on the roads. She did not know a lot about Greece because was prohibited by the system in Albania then to talk about Greece or any other country.
Bebe is from the Democratic Republic of Congo. She came with her husband in Greece fifteen years ago.
She is a very active person in the Panafrican Womens Association and in their church. She is very proud of her origin and dresses only with her country’s fashion clothes.
Many women stop her on the street or wherever she goes to ask her why she is wearing her head-wrap (Dhuku). Bebe answers that it is a communal identity and signifies resistance and she is resisting to change her clothes and her identity.
Her story is not actually a story but is a pray in Lingala, her mother tongue.
Storytelling for adult education and intercultural understanding