Photographer's Note

Photo of a Roma lady in charge of second hand clothes sale in the flea market in the town of Polican. She looked like she had the situation completely under control and you would not want to mess with her! There are some 100 thousand Roma people in Albania that have arrived there from the Indian continent some 600 years ago. They speak their own language mixed up with lots of Albanian words. They have been very resilient in maintaining their colourful lifestyles and even the communist state did not quite succeed in its attempt to forceful integration.

Albanians are incredibly tolerant towards other religions, ethnicities and general foreign customs and the Roma people live very peaceful there. That said no one really bothers knowing them better either, quoting Albanian saying: “You live in your house and I live in mine, the street is where we meet!” The transition of Albania to democracy must have been especially difficult for the Roma as when it gets tough it is the “others” that pay the biggest price but in the long run the freedom gives the Roma a great opportunity to maintain their life style and make money out of their superb trading skills.

tyro, BennyV, worldcitizen, gildasjan, daddo, Vasa has marked this note useful

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Additional Photos by Aleks Gjika (agjika) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 103 W: 39 N: 516] (3177)
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