K-095 Doda, Syria

 1 Navê mi *****-i, e-j Sûrî-mi, e-j muḥafeża Ḥesekê-mi. Gudnê mê-d neqeba Qamişlo û ʕamudê de-yi, navê gundê me Doda-yi; gudikî biçuk-i niha şuẋlê bîst malkî tê de-yi. berê meżin bû şêst-ḥeftê mal tê-d hebû.
My name is *****, I’m from Syria and I’m from Al-Hasaka Governorate. Our village is between Qamishly and Amuda, the name of our village is Doda; nowadays, it is a small village that includes about twenty houses. In the past, it was bigger and used to include between sixty and seventy houses.  
 2 Xelk ḥemi ç’ûn beled, ê gi cû xwendinê, ê go mala xwe bir, ê derket oripa. Ana gundkî biçûk-i. Ê go lê dişuẋulin felaḥ-in ḥemi, ʕerd merdê wana heni. Nîsk-in.. e go tiştê go diç’înin nîsk-in, genim-in, ceh-in ev tişt miştê wilo-ni.
All of the people have gone to the town. Some people went for studying, others just moved and some people emigrated to Europe. Now, it is a small village. People who work there (in the village) are all peasants who have land. Things that they grow are lentils, wheat and barley and so on.
 3 Em ser ḥidûdê Tirkî-ni ṭebʕen, di ser me ri Menderê tê, Qesra tê. Neqeba me-û Qamişlo teqrîben diwazde kîlomitr-i.
We are on the border of Turkey, certainly; next to us (our village) to the north, there are Medere and Qesra (Kurdish villages in Turkey). The distance between us and Qamishlo is 12km.
 4 Bere ʕerda riyê ax bû ḥerî bû, ç’ele em nikarîbûn ç’ûbana ebeden ila bi terektoraba. Niha baş-i niha zift kirni teqrîben ribik seʕetê mero digê Qamişlo. Em… ṭebʕen ez li gund mam ḥeṭa ṣefa şeşa, medresa me ḥeṭa ṣefa şeşa li gund heyi. Piṣti wêna ez hatim me li Qamişlo xwend ḥefṭ û ḥeyşt û dûra ez ç’ûm Şamê me li Şamê xwend.
In the past, the roads were soil… were mud. In winter, we could not move at all unless using tractors. Now, it is good, they have asphalted the roads; it takes quarter of an hour to get to Qamishlo. We…(hesitation) certainly, I stayed at the village till grade six, our school goes up to sixth grade. Afterwards, I came to Qamishlo where I studied grades seven and eight and after that I went to Damascus where I continued my study.
 5 Li Şamê jî ew jî e li Zorarva bûm; Zorava jî menṭîqek jê-r dibê… bi ʕerebî jê-r dibê Wadîlmeşarîʕ. Ew jî menṭîqa kurmanja-yi wek dibê ʕeşwaîat-in ḥemi malê muxalif-in. li cem Meşrûʕdumer-i Meşrûʕdumer menṭîqek raqî-yi. Em… li wir ḥemi kurmanj-in ṭebʕen eẋlebê wa kurmanj-in. ḥemi ê go dişuẋuli ê gi bilaṭa ê gi siramîka ê gi dehan-i ê gi li wir dixwîni ê gi tê ʕeskeryê yeʕnî menṭîqak feqîr-i.
In Damascus, I was in Zorava; Zorava is an area that is called Wadi Al-mashari in Arabic. It is a Kurdish area that basically consists of slums and illegally built houses. It is close to Meshru Dummar which is an upscale area. We…(hesitation) all people who live there are Kurds, for sure the majority are Kurds working in flagstones, ceramics and painting houses, some of them are students and others are doing their military service which means that the area is poor.
 6 Ez li wir mam, ez teqrîben ji noṭ û ç’ara di ḥeṭa di ḥezar û… ḥeṭa par pêrar ez li wir mam. Mi tedrîs dikir ji xwe ri, me-j xwe-r dewrat ji ṭilaba-r vedkirin me ew dikir.
I stayed there; I was there since approximately ‘94 till two thousand and… I stayed there till last year or the year before. I was teaching; we were opening courses for students. That’s what we used to do.
 7 Emê vegerin ser mesela… ser mesela gund. ana wek vî ç’aẋî meha şeşa germ-i gelkî germ-i. Ana wxtê ç’andinyê-yi e dibê qey niha genim ma genim nîsk ma nîska diç’înin niha, bes wextê genim hîn nehatîyi, şuẋlê pazde-bîst ro di-ni. Niha ç’andinya wa-yi, cew gelkî germ-i.
Let’s go back and talk about the village. Now about this time (of the year), the sixth (month), is hot so hot. Now, it is harvest time, I think they are reaping wheat and lentils by now, yet the time for reaping wheat has not come yet, it could be about fifteen to twenty days later. Now it is harvest, the weather is so hot.
 8 Berî wêna di meha ç’ara û sisya di behar-i, wê ç’aẋê… wê ç’aẋê wilo wextê ç’ûnê-yi, wê ç’aẋê xweş-i. bihar-i şînkaî-yi, cew xweş-i.
Earlier to that, in the fourth and third months, it is spring. That period is the high time for going out, that period is nice. It is spring, green and the weather is nice.
 9 em nêzîkî T’irkî-ni, nêzîkî wa cîyayê T’irkî-ni, fe wilo bêhna mero derdikevi, şînkaî-yi dora me. em li wir beri em digyan hevdo xort mortê gund pir bûn. Em… me dilîst, me bi ṭipê dilîst, me bi ẋara dilîst, me bi ẋar û firing dilîst, me bi k’ortê dilîst. Xortê gund pir bûn.
We are close to Turkey, close to the mountains of Turkey. So, it is so relaxing and there is greenery all over the place. In the past, we used to gather there and there were a lot of young men in the village. We used to play… We used to play football, marbles, marbles and coins and ditches. There were a lot of young men in the village.
 10 Niha ev t’işt nemayi t’eqrîben, yanî carê gava gi e li Şamê bûm ez diç’ûm gund ev t’işt ebeden nemabû. K’es li gund nemayi, e… niha mayi bes inû ḥer yek diri bes jibu ehil mehlê xwe bibîni û xelaṣ, ev mayi hew wilo.
Now, these things don’t really exist anymore, I mean that when I used to be in Damascus, I occasionally used to visit the village and these things had stopped happening. No one (from his peers) has stayed in the village yes… now, what is left is that everyone goes (to the village) only to see his family and relatives and nothing else, this is left and that is the situation.
 11 Berê mesela inû ḥidûdê T’irkî gelkî aṣê bû, k’es… musteḥîl bû k’es heri, me dibhîst digo ʕalem dirin bes… , bes niha ḥidûd wek dibê vebûyi yeʕnî p’iştî va eḥdasê Sûrî ç’êbûni ḥidûd t’eqrîben vebûyi, yeʕnî ʕalem ne-b… ne-b sihûlet dirin zeḥmetî tê-d heyi bes dirrin yeʕnî e go şuẋlê wîna li Tirkî hebi, Serxetê em dibê Serxetê,   şuẋlê wî li Serxetê hebi dirri.
In the past, the matter that the border of Turkey was sealed, it was impossible for anyone to cross it, we used to hear rumors about some people crossing the border but… but nowadays, you can say that the border has been opened, I mean that after the events happening in Syria, the border is almost open, I mean it is not too easy though, there is some difficulty to cross the border but people go, I mean people who have issues in Turkey, Serxetê (a traditional Kurdish name for Kurdish lands that are in Turkey, usually used as opposite to Benxwte [the Kurdish lands in Syria]) we call it Serxetê (literally means the lands to the side of the line), people, who have issues in Serxetê, go.
 12 Ana tiştê go T’irkî… gelek biṭaʕetê ji T’irkî tînin, meselen çek ma çek, xwarin ma xwarin ana ḥemi ji T’irkî tînin, ji K’urdistanê tînin. Ev baş-i biʕtîbar riyê go dirin mûḥafeżatê di, dirin berê ji Derʕa tanîn, ji Ḥema tanîn, ev xiḍra û ma xiḍra û tişt miştê wilo. ana ev û ew rê hatiyi girtin, îca ḥemî ji K’urdistanê wa tînin.
Now the matter of Turkey… they bring a lot of goods from Turkey, for example now they bring cloth and food from Turkey and Kurdistan. This is a good thing considering that other roads which lead to other governorates… in the past, they used to bring (things) from Deraa and Hama, things like vegetables and the like. Nowadays, all of these roads have been closed, and hence they bring everything from Kurdistan and other places.
 13 ṭebʕen em ser xeṭa ḥidûdî-ni, li ẋerbî me ʕamûdê-yi û wek dibê li alîyê şerq T’irbesipyê-yi û Rimelan-i û Dêrikê-yi ew ica dikevin wî muselesê alîyê Dijlê di, li alyê Kurdistanê-ni
Naturally, we live on the border, to the West of our village comes Amuda and, as they say, to the East side come Tirbesipiye, Rimelan and Derik, they are in the triangle corner close to Tigris river, they are close to Kurdistan.
 14 Ser mesela ç’î di wilo ʕadat û t’eqalîdê me li gund, hebû berê dermale me şerjê dikirin, niza e dibê qey ev tişt nemayi. berê wek ʕadet bû ev enû t’eqrîben t’alîya biharê… t’alya biharê xelkê ḥema ḥer yek ji xwe-r golikik dik’irî.
Concerning our traditions and conventions in the village, in the past, we used to slaughter cows, I don’t know, I don’t think this exists anymore. It was usual in the past that all people buy calves by the end of spring.
 15 Wê ç’aẋê digo nogon, nogon ne golik-i û ne çêlek-i, di neqeba wa de-yi. Dik’rîn û ceh û ka ma ka didanê ḥeṭa dibû serê ç’ele, serê ç’ele îca meselen digo îro wê filan kes dermala xwe şerjêki carna meselen sê-ç’arka li gund şerjêdikir, îca zilam ma zilam wê xort mort ḥemi herin wê bi werîskî wê nigê wê çelekê girêdin û wê li ʕerdêxin û wê şerjêkin û ḥemî quṭ dikin û ç’îk dikin û ḥemî xwê dikin, dikin qeṭê wek k’efa… ne wek k’efa dest wek nîvê kefa dest, ḥemî xwê dikin xwîya a ṣexrî, xwîya a we libê mezin û ḥemî dixistin k’îsê semadê di û datanî xanîyê bara ne frêzer û ne mrêzer.
That time it was called ‘nogon’. ‘Nogon’ is neither a calf nor a cow, it is in between. They buy one and feed it barley and hay till the beginning of winter, then for example when one of the villagers is going to slaughter his ‘dermale’ (a calf that is fed and reared up in order to be slaughtered for its meat later on) sometimes three to four villagers could do it at the same day, then all of the men of the village tie the cow’s legs, drop it on the floor, slaughter it, cut it up into pieces and cover it with salt. The meat is cut up into pieces not in the size of the palm but half the palm of the hand; they cover all of the meat in salt, the rock salt that has big crystals, put all the meat in bags and place it in the stock shelter. No freezers or fridges were needed.      
 16 Îca dima… meselen wê bimîni ç’ele ew goşt xeranabi ṭebʕen, ḥemi di nav xwê de-yi. Ç’ele ḥer carê wê meselen… wê sibê meselen wê ṭirrşkê ç’êkin dixwazin goşt di navxin, êvarî wê di qeṭ goşt derxin wê di nav avê xin, di nav xwê de-yi ṣibandî-yi bi xwê, wê êvarî di qeṭa texin nav avê di û ḥeta roja di sibehê bik’ûn şorbûna wê hah baş bû yeʕnî wilo ew şorbûn jê ç’û yeʕnî.
Then, for example, it will be kept till winter; being fully covered in salt, the meat certainly does not spoil. In winter let us say, for example, they are going to cook Tirshik (A Kurdish food that basically consists of vegetable, tomato sauce and sometimes meat) they would like to add meat to it, in the evening (he means in the day before evening) they will immerse two pieces of meat in water because the meat is covered with a layer of salt and they keep them till next day morning so that its saltiness is removed.  
 17 ṭebʕen cîlê niha, e dibê qey gelek ji wa pê neḥisyani û gelek ji wana ew tişt nediḥebizand yeʕnî, nedixwestin ev tişt. Tê bîra mi mi jî gelkî wilo kêfa mi jê-r nedhat yeʕnî, biʕtîbar mero goştê ṭerr dixwazi ne evê xwê kirî, ne xweşbû yeʕnî.
As for the current generation, I think they did not hear much about this and many people did not like it. I remember that I myself did like it as well because people tend to prefer fresh meat rather than the salty one; I mean it was not tasty.
 18 Ev ʕadetik bû berê. P’iştî ev frêzer ma frêzer derketin, k’esî nema dermale girtin û beha jî bûn k’esî nema girtin, Ev ç’û.
This was a custom in the past. After freezers and such devices have come to existence, nobody took ‘dermale’ anymore, because rearing calves became so expensive, and hence nobody is keeping calves for slaughtering any more, this has gone.    
 19 Berê dehnûk hebûn, ṭebʕen ana jî heni bes berê bêtir hebû. Dehnûk.. neqrî hebû, neqrî wek beroşkê meżin-i gelkî meżin-i, yeʕnî ʕirḍê wêna ez dibê qey ew wek daiîre-yi ew ç’îka wêna ji ṭerefê wê ḥeṭa ṭerefê wê teqrîben mitrok mitrok û bî-sîh santîm hebû.
In the past, there used to be what is called boiled wheat. As a matter of fact, it exists nowadays too, but it used to be more widespread in the past. There was what is called ‘neqri’, ‘neqri’ is like a big cooking pot… a very big cooking pot, and I think its width which is like a circle, from edge to edge, it would approximately be between 1 meter and 1m, 20-30 cm.
 20 Pênşeş biloka wê têxin bin di ya kevrê meżin li gund hebûn wê têxin bin di, û bin t’ijê dar û mar û jek û mek û t’işt mişt’ê kevin û hema ç’i hebi dixin bin di û agir berdidênê. T’ijê av dikin ḥeṭa ew ava wê ber k’el îca genmê xwê berdidênê, we genim dik’eland.
They would put six to seven cement bricks beneath it (beneath the big pot to have space for setting fire) or using some big stones instead, then they put sticks, wood, old cloths and anything that they no longer use under it and set fire to them. They fill the big pot with water and as soon as the water boils, they steep the wheat into the hot water to boil.
 21 Disa li gund di bû deʕwet ḥemi zarok marok ḥemi lê vedḥewyan. ḥeṭa k’elk pê-v bê û îca bi bêrê li hev dixistin, we neqrî-yi jê-r digo neqrî bi bêrê li hev di xistin ṭebʕen ev ji bo ç’i bû ev dehnûk jê-r dibêjin jibo bikin birẋul t’alî.
Again it becomes like a wedding in the village where many children gather around the big pot. When it starts to boil, they stir it using a shovel. All of this process was for the sake of making groats later on.  
 22 îca piştî gi dihat k’elandin, zaroka jî ḥemi ḥer yek t’aska wana beware-yi, wê bê, wê xwedya malê wê ji wa-r ḥer yek taska wî t’ijê biki diç’û malê ê gi ji xwe-r piçik rûn lê dikir ê piçik xwê lê dikir û bi kevçîya dixwar ya bi desta dixwar û ew bû.
Then after the wheat is boiled enough, children with their bowls in hands come and the housewife fill their bowls in boiled wheat, and then they go home; some of them add some margarine to it, others add salt and they start eating it either with spoons or their hands and that is it.
 23 Dihatin ew dehnûk gava dik’elyan îca bi zembîla ḥemi wê bi bêra berdin zembîlê wê zembîl ser ṭerefê neqrîyê bi ḥeṭa gi ew ava wê jê bê xwarê wê bibin ser xanî bik’ûn ḥeṣîr ma ḥeṣîr raxistini û wa dehnûkê xwe ḥema wê raxin.
Having boiled the wheat, they used to put it in straw bowls and keep it on the rims of the big pot to filter water out of the wheat, and then take it on the roof where the mats are already spread out for the boiled wheat to dry.