Guilhermina de Souza
"My boss only pays for one bus ride so I walk the rest of the way."
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Now living in
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I worked in a family’s house, it was reasonable. I came from Minas Gerais, when my mother went to live in Recreio. When I came to live there, my mother said I was only a year old, but I ended up staying there 53 years. I didn’t pay electricity or gas bills, I brought up my children on my own without a husband, and I didn’t pay those bills. My bills are all up to date, I have never been late paying energy bills. There, I didn’t have to pay for transport, I rode a bike to work. Everything was nearby. Here, we’re far away from everything, I sleep now where I work for three days. I go on Wednesdays, work, and just come back on Friday night. Here, you have to pay for things. You have to pay the boys on the door, these boys who cut the grass, you have to pay them. It’s very bad here. A lot of people came who shouldn’t have been mixed together. People even fight over the plants in the garden, because there are a lot of badly brought up children here, playing with kites, horrible.
But it’s a good house, we just need to get a bit organised. If they mess with my plants, I call their mothers. It was a lot of sacrifices [in the old place]. the neighbour’s daughter liked me, and we shared a house of hers together. I was working in a bar, where we used to make food to deliver to building sites. I had a small room in her big house. I earned very little and couldn’t build my own place, not with a young child. After a while, we made a kitchen, living room and bathroom together. It wasn’t bad. It was a lot of sacrifice, we did it brick by brick. Here, I’ve got two bedrooms, a living room and a kitchen. The houses are good. At the time, they valued my home at 12,900. What am I going to do with 12,900? I wouldn’t be able to buy anything, would I? I said I would prefer a house to the money, you know? A lot of people took the money, a lot of people fought not to have to leave. But you have to sacrifice a lot, leaving in the middle of the night to get a bus from here, when it’s raining, etc. My boss only pays for one bus ride, so I walk the rest of the way. We used to get an empty bus because there weren’t many people there. When it stops here, it is already extremely crowded. Campo Grande is great, I have lots of friends here. I think what makes a place is the people, isn’t it?
Reporter: Natalia Viana
Photographer: Natalia Viana