Meet Neighbour and Filmmaker Parang from Iran for a trip back to her childhood and memories of their secret video player.
Thank you for phone me, it’s nice to hear from you.
I am dyslexic and I know learning new languages so difficult.
When I was child my mother tongue was Kurdish and I had to study in Persian or the system is in Persian.
So, I grew up with two different languages. But that is why maybe it somehow helped me
So my English not be so so bad, I know still is bad, but it’s not so so so bad.
But I know I have some difficulties with others that is learning language was writing letters, but I guess it’s part of me again to imagine things and I had this sense.
I was a child like, I love to imagine. I loved to have day dream and I just wanted to… Like every single night 1 hour of when I go to the bed, for 1 hour, I dreamed the way I wanted.
I think about every detail in one situation, or one moment when I don’t know when I’m adult, when I’m grown up, when anything I want or when… I don’t know, I have exam.
I somehow create this and the beauty of this was in imagination. Sometimes, you know it’s not possible in real life, but it’s the benefits of imagination that everything is possible. in your dreams.
I loved, I love imagining and I love dreaming about everything.
I remember my dad had a video player and it was illegal because you couldn’t have video player. You could go to prison for that.
He told me that “you can’t say that to anyone, even in the school with your friends. You can’t tell them we have this because it was illegal.”
And if they find out, they will send my father to prison, and it wasn’t the only thing. There was a lot, like my father play card, playing card was illegal. My father drink alcohol, drinking alcohol was illegal.
you know, everything somehow were… Listening to music was illegal. But I remember I was in love was Pink Floyd and we had to buy an illegal way, and pay out. I never felt we have something strange in house, because when your parents do something, you don’t scared anymore.
Like I never felt like it’s something strange or difficult or maybe dangerous in our house, with the video set. But I remember one day for example, someone come and ask [to] borrow it
for a couple day, or they have guests.
I remember they covered it in a lot of black bags and stuff and I just remember how because I couldn’t understand they didn’t tell me what’s going on, but they could see how strange they behave and they do continue.
They do not even talk about the video, but the way they behave because maybe they talk about the guest: “Yeah, we have this, we’re going to cook this”, but in their hands they packing this in a black plastic and make it prepare.
And you know, it was just strange and I could see these differences. And then when I grow up, I find out what, what is this.
So, I remember for one summer, maybe I was nine years, they are about to take one for my cousin. One for me. Mine was my magic beans. And I don’t know what is the English name… You know, Jack and magic beans… Something like this.
And my cousin was something like Cinderella.
I love Jack. I love this adventure which he took, changing this.. I don’t know, cow or something… I love that.
And I remember a whole summer, it’s like three months, every single day, I will watch that
Bollywood films were very popular. And I remember they were Indian stories and love. But for my age, I didn’t enjoy, on other hand, because my sister was ten years older than me. She loved it.
And I remember she practised all these dance. And my sister’s hobby was just watching these films and dance with them and playing.
You know, they had too much music. And and she was the one who had boyfriend and fall in love. And somehow, maybe she watched Indian film too much.
I remember I loved Bruce Lee films as well. It was other options like you know, doing fight and stuff on the film, which were very popular.
You could find was Bruce Lee and character films and these things so I love that as well.
So, yeah, Oh, it was so nice to talk
to you and have a great day.
Meet Neighbour Malka, Poet and Human Rights Defender from Iraq for a Bus trip with an incredible act of kindness at its heart.
I am from the land of the black gold
I am from the richest land on the earth
I am from the land
of sunshine on a golden desert
I am from there, but I am not there
I had beautiful dreams
I had friends, brothers, sisters.
Sweet parents and pink hopes.
I had green gardens, tall palms
and olive trees. I had a warm winter… [fades out]
Hi my friend and you are welcome to come and have Arabic food from my hand. My food is made with love for you.
My passion… The biggest passion is to help other people and to engage with them.
For example when I was in my country all people, close people. They say to me, you have got very good job, good salary and why you involve yourself in trouble about human rights and criticise government, talk about politics…
You have to enjoy your salary with your salary, with your job and you’re an academic. I say to them, I can’t I cannot be silent when I feel around me a lot of victim, victims people, poor, vulnerable.
One day I was travelling by National Express, from London to Leicester. I had an invitation from LSE course, and when I was on the bus, behind me it was lady. and suddenly I heard the voice of this lady, life suffering as she had trouble with her health, and her body started to shake and screaming.
The things [that] surprised me, no one on the bus come to her and say “do you need help”, or ask her. All people they were in their seats but for me, I just felt my body shake and I couldn’t, I opened the seatbelt and I went to her and at that time I had a bottle of honey and water and I gave her, she drink it, honey and water. Then I tried to… make her calm, when I touched her body it was freezing, her body, and this makes me scared a lot.
I can’t forget this moment, she said to me: I’m losing the movement in my body. I cannot as she was screaming, screaming, and I did massage all her hands, fingers, legs I said to her, don’t worry, don’t worry you are fine, but to be honest inside me I was very scared she is going to lose her life.
She’s going to die, her body become freezing and my body… When I did massage for her, my body become very cold because the freezing in her body then I keep it continue.
No one on the bus come to her or ask her just the driver, even he just ask her I will call to emergency ambulance.
Just then he called to ambulance and they stopped the…The bus… But I managed to make her calm, and the freezing in her body gone And she was very happy,
she said: I’ll pray for you, thank you so much.
She managed to move when I left her, when the driver move with her to the ambulance she was much better.
Managed to move. And I just felt, I just managed to… To help her, to get to get her life again.
So always this moment in my mind, and I saw her smile on [her] face. and said to me, I will pray for you.
I thank you, God, to bless you, God to bless you.
But this upset me. Why people on the bus… No one come.
And ask her or support her, or give solidarity.
We are not stranger
we are all human.
We have to share people their…
So this moment very attached in my heart.
I cannot forget it.
I’m happy that one day I managed to help Lady, and get back her… Life. Makes me very happy and proud.
I will miss you and see you again. And this my kiss for you. [Sound of kiss]
I came here.
I am here.
But I am not here.
You are a refugee.
And your choice is not your
choice, but remember.
I am human, I am human.
Meet Neighbour Bharti from India, and her amazing family of plants.
[singing in Hindi]
[Speaks in Hindi]
hello neighbour. How are you?
I know it’s been a long time. I haven’t spoke to you and I really miss you.
And I hope you are well as well. And keeping yourself safe.
So planting is my first passion, because it’s give me give me a calm and I when I do that, I feel very relaxed and I feel like I’m connected to nature.
Give you energy. I feel like that, you know, it’s like you are carrying a small babies.
You know, you give them water every day, you clean them and then you put little compost on them to feed them.
And when they they grow bigger and bigger and something they give you fruit, sometime they give you flowers, new leaves.
Whenever for myself and I see any new leaves, I kiss the leaves. I say welcome to the family.
So I feel so much loved and I love the plants. I have almost 35 plants in my house and it’s a two bedroom house.
On the left hand side is my kitchen. So I have a few plants in my kitchen as well.
Especially I have Indian money, a money plant, which we think as Indian.
It can generate the money. You know, you can welcome the money and bring the money and prosperity inside of the house and other plant.
I have Basil, but it’s not an Indian Basil. It’s Kenya, Kenyan, Kenyan and African Basil, someone gifted to me. And it just recently had some beautiful, small, small purple flowering, on the top of the bush. And it looks really nice and beautiful Fragrant scent coming out if you touch the leaves.
When we come up to the kitchen and on the left hand side on the show rack, I have two other plants.
One is another money plant, which a long leaf with the white, white pattern or patches, whatever you can see on that and that plant, It just recently got the new leaves that I just kissed yesterday.
Yes. And after that I have another plant which called some call it, its a family of erm, poison plant, but it’s good for the purify the air. So that’s why I bought that one.
When I talk to my brother and he was showing me his plants on my… And on my Indian house on the roof, and he said, look, my plant is growing this. And now I got these four tomatoes and five of that, what do you call that, brinjal, the eggplant. Did you have something like that?
So really doing a little competition with each other. You have done something and you are so eager to, you know, to see the results.
So it’s like a like when the baby is about to crawling And just the next step is to just to walk itself So it’s like that kind of excitement.
I feel like a parent and then the baby is like my plant. So I was like, OK, now I have I have both. I have just give birth to this tree now.
It’s the tree’s time to show me the growth, and I’m planning you both need to go and visit us one day, then I will show you.
[speaks in Hindi]
Thank you, thank your neighbour for calling me and keeping in touch with me. And I wish you a very happy,
happy life and have a nice day.
See you soon,
[Singing in Hindi
Meet Neighbour and Musician Rey from Iran for a concert just for you and chats about playing his beloved Santoor.
Meet Neighbour and Musician Rey from Iran for a concert just for you and chats about playing his beloved Santoor.
Transcript coming soon!
Meet Neighbour Nasim from Iran as she chats about love, treasured gifts and memories.
Transcript coming soon!
Meet Neighbour Waru from South Sudan and learn how he built his own traditional English Cob house in Uganda.
Yeah, hi everyone. I want to say welcome to you, to listen to my story.
I hope you will enjoy them
Hi, my name is Waru John Moses Mori. I’m South Sudanese
Particularly from yeah, I come from Wadupe and I have been here in England for three, for three months.
We have built a house in Uganda, which is called a ‘cob’ – which is an English traditional kind of building mostly in Devon.
That’s where my wife comes from, but I have it here in…in erm, yes someone told me that a cob in Derby, it means bread!
That’s not the bread that makes the house. And it means a lot to me because we work so hard.
My wife did the designing I did a lot of, a lot of physical work digging the antique soil and cutting grass, transporting them and getting pots
You know we were not the ones to build it because we hired builders but we have contributed a lot. The idea of building it, it was to, to actually blend the… English tradition and the African tradition because you got mud houses in Uganda.
To celebrate the beauty of the two cultures has, and in the end, you know when the house was built, it was real, you know that inspired me.
Many people are surprised yes, and to them you know it was a really big thing, but it’s not really a big thing because anyone, anyone can do it.
So suddenly you know, we moved here to the UK, and you know but I feel happy that the house is tidy, like someone is living in it, i’m really impressed yeah
If I see the pictures always you know I feel inspired. So, people describe it, that it is, it is a boat because it looks like a boat
And then others describe it as you know… it is, it’s a mushroom (laughs) You know you have, you have a type of mushroom in Uganda that somehow looks like the roof the, of the house
Yeah its real but I would say I would go there You know the boat, because it’s real and some would say that it was not a boat
So, yeah, that how, that’s how the house looks like
And the walls are entirely mud, mixed with the grass. It’s a nice thing to do, it gets me playing with it. Yeah, it was quite enjoyable, really yeah.
I helped a little bit because I was busy, you know, working I was working you know, full time, but during the weekends, oh maybe late and late afternoons, i’d rush, i’d so something for like 1 hour or you know 30 minutes.
Then I would go back. Most of the weekends, I was just you know there at least doing something
My wife is an artist, she did the designing see.. And the builder also is, you know the builder is an artist. They describe to me, how, you know, how the roof was going to look like but I didn’t understand I was like totally confused.
They, they put the iron sheets because the walls, the walls are made of mud, but the roof is iron sheet. We wanted it to be cross-hatch, but because of fires So, we decided to go for you know, for the roof.
So, when it was finished, I wasn’t around because I went to visit my mum, and when I came up I was full of joy and I was like the picture that I had… You know, it was different from, you know what I saw And that was quite a challenge by that because you know the picture I had in my mind was completely different… Yeah compared to the outcome.
I first met her in South Sudan, we were both doing discipleship training school in YWAM
and then yeah we fell in love, yeah we continued every day, Yeah that was 2010 you know very quickly our relationship… In 2011 we got engaged, 2013 we got married, that was in South Sudan, in Africa. Yeah, we got married.
We came to England, I was doing community development. A foundation in community development school with YWAM and she was finishing her 5 year at the uni she went to, Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge
So, after, after my course, our plan was to go back you know to South Sudan and to work in my, in my village
But unfortunately the war broke when I was still in England You know on that… on that same year
So we had to change our plans, to go to, to go to Uganda. We were there for 5 years working, you know before we came here.
I wanted to, to plant live, live things like hedge and grow the things around like you know. Both me and my wife you know we work hard to live sustainable, you know I like.. I like you know working in the nature, not working like it is nature
and… I was seeing, you know…In what I would like.. eating the things that you have, you know… And what you have planting
You know, it’s, it’s something, something special because… You know, different from what you are buying in the.. in the , you know in the market, because you know how they are grown, but you obviously know
And yeah… And also, you know to be ample, you know, to be blessing to give someone, you know what you have grown yeah, it is a blessing, yeah I like that.
Thank you everyone for listening to my story
I hope that you are inspired by it, or you have learnt something from it
[Waru speaks in Kakwa]
Meet Neighbour Basema from Kuwait for a swim and a seaside holiday.
She sells sea shell on the sea shore, seashells, okay, seashells she sells seashells on the seashore.
Hello my neighbour, how are you, are you okay? I hope you are well
I like a lot swimming, so my my brother say you can go to a leisure centre and he like go to like website and you have a card, like you have a price half price when you go to leisure centre.
So he did it and like a gift, it’s not that expensive.
But when he said I how it’s like you feel happy and I appreciate it because yeah.
You, you, you will do something. You like it.
So yeah, I’ll always when I open my wallet I see the card. Yeah.
I always like directly remember my my brother. He do it without I ask him. Actually Ghani is amazing.
I have, I call him my angel. Yeah. He’s like my eyes. He is very good.
I feel I’m lucky because I have my brother like Ghani. He is younger than me, between me and him six years. But I’m bigger than him.
Yeah, I love the water, like swimming a lot. Yeah, besides, [the seaside] is my favourite places,
I went to Liverpool, Blackpool, Scarborough. it’s amazing places, actually and Leisure Centre, good water here, very cold.
I can sunshine and the people, many people and children play the sand, I’m playing with my neighbour wife, her name is Anna as people or beach ball it’s called right and my my brother and my neighbour, like sitting and have like, sun or what is called, you know, when the people step on the sand and just like it’s called sun shower or like that, yeah okay sunbathing,
seashell, yes, you see so many kind of seashell there.
I like to bring it or, what is it, catch it. And I play with my neighbour and my daughters, but my son always in the sea and water just play with water.
You and you can hear the waves of the sea and how it’s make you relaxing, especially at sunset.
And just to sit at the sand and just watching and how you’re watching it, like you can see unlimited and sunset and heard waves, can say, barbecue, it smells because you can imagine some restaurant.
So there is like a barbecue. You can smell this and eat some chicken and onion with tomato and potato, potato little bit of salad [laughs] and a glass of Coca-Cola or a glass of Coca-Cola.
You can drink it yeah, but how delicious.
Thank you for calling me.
I’m happy to hear your voice. Take care and bye bye.
Meet Neighbour and Singer/ Songwriter Lydia from America for a trip to her family homeland of Ghana.
[Acoustic music plays]
[singing] I just want to take one minute to talk to you.
I just want to let you
know you’re not my man.
Oh oh, the way you smile when you look
at me, oh oh the way you act like you’re into me
baby don’t waste my time
i’d rather have a peace of mind. Baby… [music fades]
Hi, neighbour. I know the world may seem a bit crazy at the moment, but I promise it’s
not as crazy as you think it is. So why don’t we have a chat about it?
The lime green polka dot luggage that I bought My mom, I believe, bought like a set of these in different colours,
but lime green is one of my favourite colours and I’ve had it since we moved out of the States.
So I’ve had it for about 13 years now. And it’s traveled with me from the States to
Ghana, Africa, where I lived for a bit.
And then it came with us to the UK, and I also used it when I did busking because I was a busker
for about five years.
So I’d always packed my amp up, and you know, batteries, microphone, everything in that luggage. And yeah, I used it also as a stand.
I’d make my own signs so people would find me and stick it on my luggage.
And, yeah, it just it means a lot to me because it’s quite old now and it’s starting to deteriorate, which kind of made me sad.
[there is music and singing in the background]
I was looking for, a sign, or not really a sign, I think I could sense that I needed to stop busking for a while so I could finally pursue my own music because it’s great doing covers. But I didn’t want to be known as a cover singer
But because we didn’t have status at the time, busking was really instrumental for me. And like the opportunities I’ve had through busking are unbelievable.
Sometimes, you know, the people you see on the street and the projects I’ve been involved with or the venues or places I’ve been able to travel simply from putting myself out there.
So, yeah, that luggage just kind of symbolises, I think, packing what’s necessary and creating opportunities and utilising what you have.
But I do remember there’s a picture of us leaving the airport, so I remember, you know, carrying it.
And, at that time it was brand new, So the colours were a lot brighter. Yeah, I just remember being nervous because at that point we were going to Africa and although my dad is African, I still had never been.
And that’s a common kinda story for many as they call African Americans, where many of them have no connection to Africa.
Thankfully, I had my dad to tell me a lot of stories, but to actually go was scary for me because the media only portrays it as a famined, impoverished place.
As soon as we arrived, it was beautiful. And there’s beaches everywhere. The air quality, food quality is amazing. There’s a lot of just vibrancy.
There’s always music playing, always people dancing, always singing.
I guess again with the luggage, that picture of me carrying it when I left, I was 12 at the time, but I’ve always looked a bit older than I am. But seeing myself and that I was young and the clothes I was wearing
and my hair at the time was relaxed. So, you know, chemically straight.
And then when I moved there, I just saw the natural beauty and I started to grow my hair out naturally. And I learnt about the importance of the nutrients in food,
which isn’t really in our food over here.
And yeah, it just grounds you and, you know, you’re touching Earth. You’re not wearing shoes as much. So you’re literally having intimacy with the world and the earth,
which you appreciate more.
I think gratitude for how it’s [the luggage] been by my side and strength, because it’s you know, it’s endured a lot, a lot of travel and carrying my amp and things like that.
And I can’t think of the word at the moment. But just how it’s OK to leave things behind.
You don’t want to hold on to, you know, certain experiences or perspectives.
I think that’s another thing that society doesn’t prioritise is the fact that you’re always evolving and changing. I think it’s kind of like, OK, if you think this way, this is how you supposed think forever.
I’ve had many views change. One day I believe in one thing and in the next ten minutes I could change my thought on that. And that’s OK.
And I think as well, when you’re a musician, you have to accept change and be able to adapt to situations, and your endurance is always tested.
And, you know, it’s like you’re kind of challenged, OK, if you really want to be an artist, I’m going to test to see how bad you want it.
Because it’s not an easy journey. Yeah, that luggage, sometimes I don’t want to let go of it because I think, you know, I’m used to having this by my side and if you give me a brand new £500 pound one, i’d still want the old one restored.
So I thought, OK, it’s OK to have a new beginning and close this chapter and, you know, just honour it by carrying on with the lessons that it’s learnt with me, because it’s nice, I think, in life to like animate the things that mean something to you.
It’s just luggage. But it does feel like a friend.
And I love how bright it is. So, yeah, when I see it, I just think of new perspectives, new beginnings and also trust, you know, trusting in myself that I have what it takes to move on without it.
It was great to talk with you and never forget the importance and value of the human touch and staying connected.
[singing] I want to be a rockstar, superstar.
I don’t wanna live an average life
Mama, I wanna be free
Sing the songs that mean something to me…
[Music fades out]
Meet Neighbour and Singer Abdallah from Sudan for a journey into following his dreams.
[Abdallah speaks in Arabic]
Hi friend! How are you doing today?
Are you well? It’s nice to see you.
I was 10 years old, there are some people in our village they are singing every day playing some music in front of us.
I saw them enjoy, with keyboard.
Yes, I start to speak with them and I said…
(Translator) I was practising behind
my father till the point I… I perform in a big performance in front of lots of people.
I was singing and by coincidence my father saw me I’m singing there.
So, from that day he told me that this is Haram and it’s against our religion.
(Abdallah): Yeah, I feel happy. Very happy every day. More happy singing because I don’t have a guitar or an organ.
Yeah, I enjoyed the singing. I went to University. Yeah, furthest one in all University.
I was singing. [speaks in Arabic]
(Translator): So, I used to sing in the the party, or in big events or weddings while I’m studying in the
University in that region.
[Abdallah speaks in Arabic]
(Translator): And because the city, the University, I was there apart from my village or my family, I start singing there, till
I became famous and all the people all the students give me or called me as most biggest singer in that University.
I was very happy in that time.[Abdallah speaks Arabic]
(Translator): So, when I reached 18,
I started to take the decision, my own decision to sing with respect of my father.
So I never sing again in front of him.
But I continued to sing even a small events, not in front of him to respect his opinion, or his mind
(Abdallah): Yes, yes, he respect me
but he is not happy.
(Translator): One event, all the artists and the singers, the famous ones, the public figures, gathered there in one event to listen to who is the best singer here and give him like a certificate or
register him as the best one.
[sound of applause]
So my [performance] was the best one. I was very satisfied and I was very happy. I was the best one singing that day.
So the specialist to me you are the best one. [We] are now certifying you as the best one.
You have to join the unity of the artist. So you have to go to the capital to register yourself and you have the, like, ID facial ID that your
artist, or singer or musician.
So I was very happy that day and I went back to tell my father everything, but he refused for the second time.
So I didn’t go to have this ID, special ID and I wasn’t, I stopped being a singer.
[Abdallah speaks in Arabic]
(Translator:) So, I don’t know try to look for another talent like drawing but I didn’t find myself there. I couldn’t continue.
As I graduate from the University and start to be a teacher, I told myself I have to continue giving my talent to the student,
and teach them. I can reach them and learn them how to be a respect and enjoying the singing and how it’s very important to express your feelings through singing many types of songs.
My father that was his decision. I’m not upset of him even when I left Sudan and come here.
I came here. I told him that I’m travelling and moving.
So, still we are friends.
We can talk but not in the same port of thoughts.
So he is a different of me in terms of thoughts or thinking, so because he is very strict and I have I’m open minded.
And yeah. He also added, when he needs anything, anytime from me. I sent him like some money
if he wants, or what he needs.
So we are okay and we communicate nicely together.
[Abdallah speaks in Arabic]
(Translator): one song, it’s a song for the country. I love this.
Obviously it’s Arabic one. I always love to sing this one and I feel comforted, happy when I sing this one
(Abdallah): I don’t have a big dream as a singer,
but I want to enjoy myself, my music.
[Abdallah speaks in Arabic]
(Translator): Yeah we try to make like a group here in the UK to sing together and practise singing together.
Yeah, I found someone, he can play and me and sing and make like a band together and starting to think like heritage songs and record it and sell it here.
But might be it’s a very long decision or plan. [Abdallah speaks in Arabic]
Thank you very much.
Yeah, I will call you later.
[Abdallah sings in Arabic]
Meet Neighbour and Tailer Zaher from Syria, for stories of neighbourly sewing exchanges and dreams of farming life.
Hello neighbour. Nice to speak to you
(Translator): So I enjoy doing creative things like for example, repairing sewing machines, especially the complex one, redesign or repair to fix anything in a nice way.
Also, growing plants take care of the plants and ground and all this stuff. So I’m not expert, but it’s like a hobby.
I am always looking forward to something, not just to get money but to enjoy what I’m doing.
Like repairing the sewing machine, as I mentioned.
(Translator): So, for example, one of my neighbour, he had jacket. He needs to fix it.
And without any money, I didn’t take any money from him, just friendly. I did it for him.
(Translator): I was looking after my birds in the garden and he was there. He saw me and we start a conversation between us and he said, I have jacket. I need to alter the jacket.
He said, “Okay”, so I said, “Okay, give it to me.”
He said, “Okay, if you fix it for me, I will pay you”.
He said, “No, you are my neighbour. I will not take any money from you.”
So I fixed for him and he was so happy. And I didn’t take any money from him.
And one of my neighbours also a little bit far from it, in the same road.
She is Polish and she’s working in the restaurant, I think pizza… And she has two trousers she needs to alter as well.
So I… Made it for her and without any money as well. She said I should bring some pizza for children
I said to her, “No my children, doesn’t eat from out anyway”. So I did it for free for her as well.
God has plans for us. When, or prepare for us, when I am good man, they will surround me by good people as well.
(Translator): If I have enough money in the future, I dream that I have like allotment to put a different type of animal, special type of animals. And this might be will be as a man as 35 sorry, 53, 54 years old.
Might be the last dream for me if we can imagine the entrance the first room, a small room in your right hand that includes all the equipment and another room to breed the birds, and another one for sheeps oh, and cow.
And I am also enjoying growing vegetables or flowers. So there is a section or part for growing plants. But this is like a breathing picture.
But if I come to the reality, I think I have to design its very in detail.
Thank you neighbour! Nice to talk you.
Meet Neighbour and Photographer Khaled from Syria for stories of Chess, childhood, family and hope.
[sound of phone ringing]
hello, neighbour, thank you for calling me. It’s really nice to speak with you.
The things that I love in my life are my family, playing chess and taking photo my family house, it was on the side of the country.
It was so beautiful house. We have a so big garden. We have like 16 olive trees and we have like a small home for a chicken.
When I was in my uncle’s house, my cousin, my Uncle’s son, can call him cousin? Has chess, my uncle house was a flat house.
We were sitting on the veranda. My cousin was teach me how to play chess. And the first time in my life, it wasn’t easy for me, but I learnt very fast.
I have a younger brother and we have to play chess together.
There is one time when I was playing with him, I’ve put my queen in front of his king and when I moved my lord, is the queen going to kill his king and put my lord next to his queen to kill it.
When he moved his king, then I will take his queen and he said, and this time I’m not going to play with you anymore. He was like six or five.
Since seven years ago, my dad was passed away and he was the king as my mum was the queen in my life, but now I’m not the king.
My family, all is the king and the queen and i’m the chess board who are trying to keep it on it, and not to over on the floor.
I’m trying to save him in so different ways, but because my sister in Syria now and one of my sisters in Jordan and one of my sister in Canada, all my family, it’s you know, as the chess fall on the floor, it’s going to everywhere.
And so different parts of the floor now my family like this now.
When you are playing chess, it’s not a real war, but it is, it is it’s a shortfall to win in the end, but my winner it is, how can I bring my my sister to here my two sisters to here, to save them life?
It’s not a game.
It’s not because I’ve tried a lot of things to do to bring my sister to here. But there is not anyone who can help me with that because they said she’s in her country and can’t do nothing for her.
She’s in her country. I know, but her country cannot save her life.
I can say only Alhamdulelah (Thank you God)
When it is anything happened to me, my mom directly said to me, just a remember your Dad, and what he said to you, I can’t translate that to English.
You know, when a person in the middle of the sea, he can’t swim and he doesn’t have anything to stay on and you see a piece of wood, that’s the hope for him.
And mum just said, just remember, your dad said, just imagine you are in the middle of the sea and there is nothing you can stay on and you can just see the hope.
The hope is like the bits of wood.
[Speaks in Arabic]
Thank you neighbours to listen to my story,
I hope you enjoy, take care.
Meet Neighbour Mohammed from Iran for chats about his love of coin collecting.
Nice to meet you. Salom [speaks in Farsi]
My name is Mohammed Rahman Fard
I’m from Iran and I’m in England since two months ago.
Playing football, watching football, watching movie and TV shows and spend some time with my family.
Go to the landscape and just played my son, and I’m crazy about the silver coin collection.
The silver coins right now is a business of few countries just in Pacific Ocean, small countries.
They give your order to the designer and they design a very nice silver coin.
With the… So it’s a silver and top of that we have a kind of stone like Amber or Tiffany.
The mintage of these silver coins are very, very low like 999 in all of the world and just it’s but, it’s a kind of art and just beautiful and just I collect this kind of silver coin
When I was younger. I mean just very young. I collected lighters, different lighters.
Yes, that’s amazing. I gave all my collection to my friends bank note and several coins.
I will pass it to my son for sure.
I like my next generation.
Just remember me, be done
Purchased a silver coin, which I mean a pack of silver coin which is included five different sizes of silver coins.
It was about anniversary of 2500 years history of Iran ceremony we had in Iran just Shah, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi.
Is a pack of silver coins amazing for its very fantastic. No, just I remember when I purchased this silver coin pack, I dreamed and I saw my dream erm..
Mohammad Reza Pahlavi. so to me just this is the money you can collect it.
But he show me his bag, very big bag and dollar or in it full of dollar, I said “No, I’m not going to touch them.”
Just if you have the… Our currency is ‘rial’, If you can give me some rial which it is belongs to your prelude, i’ll collect it, and he gave me some rial
Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi it’s our last King in Iran, after the revolution. He went to America and Panama and then he went to the Egypt and he died in Egypt because of cancer.
And I… I think, I think it was a golden, golden time for my country in that prelude.
Bye neighbour. Thank you for listening.
Meet Neighbour and Writer Kafi from Bangladesh for chats about his journey into writing, and poetry.
How are you?
[Kafi speaks in Bengla]
My name is Kamal Uddin, my alias Kafi Kamal
in my country people know me my pen name, Kafi Kamal.
I came from Bangladesh.
I studied in the village until higher secondary, then I go to Chittagong city.
I love Bangla as my mother tongue.
From a school life I had a passion for a sports, social and cultural activities and writing.
In childhood, I used to listen to rhyme from my grandmother and my mom.
This is how I become interested in poetry.
One day when I saw a magazine on a school wall I wished to write.
Since then I have been involved in writing
My first short story book was published in 2000.
More than a dozen of my books have been published.
Combined poetry, stories, essays and political research.
Almost ten years ago I write a story in Chittagonian Language, first time.
The name of the story is “Metal”.
The Metal means soil worker. Those who cut the soil, build a road, build dams and dig pond
On the blog, I get a lot of response to the story. From that inspiration, I write five consecutive stories.
At first I could not find the publisher, because of a difficult language.
Later a publisher published the book. There we had a lot of reviews after the book was published, but many readers could not respond as mass because the difficult language.
But I’m glad because it’s the first book of the Chittagonian language.
When the book published I saw my story in a book form, actually it’s a great moment.
I feel just like this is my kids, sometimes you know when this book published I sleep in night first night with my books.
As writer actually need a single room alone. We will do and outside to have a natural beauty, maybe garden be looking easily at sky.
I have left off in my country but actually left off and not good for writing. Because when you write about in left of or text of your mind is sometimes disconnect with your thinking
Goodbye. [Kafi speaks in Bangla]
Meet Neighbour Nasrin from Iran for a snowy mountain adventure.
Hello, and how are you?
I’m your neighbour.
My name is Nasrin, I come from Iran. I live in the UK about 19 years
The best story for me is my memories, especially when used to and I was in my country, Iran.
Every week I went to Mountain with some friends, best friends, and doesn’t matter which season I love it, wintertime.
I don’t know why, because that was too cold and hard, but I love that.
And just I remember one day in that was in wintertime, we decided to go to mountain.
That was that day was too cold and snowing and everywhere was frozen.
And we went out with friends in early morning, five of us or four, I think something like that.
And when we arrive on the mountain and our friends join us and we start to climbing that was so hard and, winds came.
And with snow and some village light of houses in the village in from far away just we can see just a small light and we try to go to the top of the mountain.
That was too dangerous because weather was dark, still dark. And we try to go there and after more than two hours, we arrive to one shelter because we need to make a breakfast for us.
I’ve prepared some fire in the shelter and put the kettle, a small kettle, for tea and make eggs and something on top of fire that was, I think, best breakfast, a best tea for me.
When I tell this story, sometimes I feel that that was a test that was lovely for me and full of the memories and the and I unfortunately, I can’t find a mountain, a big mountain in the UK.
Sometimes I miss that. Yes.
Oh, thank you so much for coming. I enjoy it, a talk with you.
I like to see you more if you want and see you later. Send my love to your family.
Meet Neighbour Yasmin from Iran for stories of lost love and adventures into space.
Hi, my neighbour!
I think your face is very familiar and you have a nice eyes, and if you if you agree, you can come in our house and I give you a tea, a nice tea, it’s Iranian tea. You can try it.
And if you need something, if you need if I can do something for you, please just tell me, I’m your neighbour. I can help you.
What I want to say is my story started when I was studying in the university in Iran.
At that time, I met a boy there and he had been in love with me for three years. But I didn’t know anything about his feelings because he was very shy.
Yes. And avoided telling me how he felt.
After finishing our class. I met him in the yard at university and he come to me and he said, “Oh, I’m sorry, can I… speak about with you something with you?”
I said, “Oh, yes, what’s happened, what’s the matter with you, why are you speaking like a crazy man?”
And he said, “I want to say something. I like you. Can I give you a gift? Please, accept me.”
I said, “I think he’s crazy”, but I look at him like crazy.
And he said, “Oh, excuse me, I’m not crazy, but I like you more. Three years I…I was waiting for this day to give
you a gift and tell you I love you.”
And I said, “Oh, I got confused”.
I gosh I feel hot but he is there. I said “Okay, okay”
I get it, His gift and go to home and I decided the first time I decided to. No, I don’t like to be a friend with him.
I should return his gift. Yes.
And I return his gift to him. And after that I heard he was crying about my act. When I heard that, I was so sorry.
After that I told him, “I know you love me, but OK, I give you time. Take your time and prove yourself to me”.
Yes. And then. Err, my mother. Yes, we can’t accept him.
She told me “He don’t like you. He just pretend like you. I don’t know.”
I said, “No, he is in love with me.”
And she said “No, I don’t accept him. You should change your decision.”
And and then because we moved to another city with each other but my mother decided to cut our relationship, I, I can’t forgive him now And I think he still loved me.
But he didn’t say anything. I couldn’t find someone like him.
I could I don’t know why, but I think he was he loved me from deepest his heart and he was honest with me.
I was born in a traditional country. It was tradition – you have to obey mother or father.
And I always… Yes, when I was a child, I, I would like to be a pilot, yes.
But in our country, women aren’t allowed to be pilot, but now, yes, they can. We have 2 pilot, women as a pilot, and they’re working in our country.
I like the speed. Yes. The jet! Make a big sound.
[Sound of aeroplane flying past]
And I would like to studying about space. Yes, I’d like to be a spaceman. I would like to see the Earth from the far distance. Yes, the lightyears…
And sorry, I should go out. I have something to do, see you again, b-bye!
[speaks in Farsi]
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