SHOIDONA VILLAGE, TAJIKISTAN
Robia is 37 years old. She is a very energetic, interesting woman with a great sense of humor. She is also a great dancer and likes to sing. The spinners often ask her to dance when they take a break at the workshop. She is married and has three sons. They have a small plot of land and her husband is a farmer. He worked in Russia in the past but was deported three years ago and can no longer travel there. Robia hopes that her children become educated and find good jobs. Her oldest son was recently admitted to law school. But education is very costly. Robia did not have enough money so she took credit from the bank to be able to pay for her son's schooling. She is very happy to have work. She uses her salary to pay the loan interest.
The saddest time in her life was when her mother died because her mother was not even 60. Her mother was the only woman with whom Robia could discuss any problem. Robia does not like to be alone. She loves to spin and enjoys going to the workshop. She finds each day in the workshop uniquely enjoyable, including when they share a lunch together. She likes to work in a women's collective with the other spinners. She tells them interesting stories and anecdotes. The other women also enjoy working with her because she makes them laugh. They miss her when she is not around - the workshop is not the same without her.