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Ola, Poland/Northern Ireland 

My name is Ola Sobieraj

I am 36 by now, yes, 36

I’m Polish

I come from Western part of Poland, but really central, and the city is called Poznań

I was actually teaching English as a Foreign Language to little kids

2001… I left Poland in 2001

When I left Poland, I actually left on my own, I wanted to travel on my own

I have been living in Northern Ireland for 14 years

I like Northern Ireland, it’s nice and quiet, something that always gets giggles out of people considering its history, but I like it, it’s nice and relaxed.  

I didn’t really pick to come here; it was by chance because I got a scholarship from university. Pure chance.

I am teaching English as a foreign language, but not full time, now I do it on the side as a hobby more of now.

Yes, I do, I run the Ethnic Minority Support project in Cookstown and Macrofelt. So we did a bit of advocacy and interpreting and organizing integration projects.

I brought a pair of shoes, which are a part of a traditional Polish costume

I remember them from childhood; I remember a place, a stall, where they were being sold in my home city. When I went back, I bought a pair for my daughter along with the rest of the costume.

Well, I think those little shoes, when I look at them, it brings back the memory of the place they were sold and I remember that place from my childhood in the city centre of Poznań that were part of our national costume, not even a costume worn in that part of Poznań

It brings back that memory straight away

I miss my city more than Poland in general and the city life and everything I associate with the city life, being young, free, and single.

Now it’s different, but when I go back about twice a year, I fill my boots with the city life.