The city was empty by 16:00. Everyone was hiding at home. We couldn’t take the pressure. My wife lost 10 kg, and I dropped two sizes. And it wasn’t because of the hunger, just the environment
They started looting the factories and taking the equipment to Crimea, 120 km from us. Evgeniy Balytskiy from the Opposition Block was appointed the governor of the Zaporizhzhya region. We knew what kind of person he was a long time ago. When there would be an event on May 9th to celebrate Victory Day, he would get together some dressed up communists, take a red flag, put on St. George’s ribbons and march as a separate group. But there were others too. Met an acquaintance who was in the police, he approached me and said, you know, I have a family, they need food. So he was trying to explain himself.
The city was empty by 16:00. Everyone was hiding at home. We couldn’t take the pressure. My wife lost 10 kg, and I dropped two sizes. And it wasn’t because of the hunger, just the environment. There’s a Russian truck going, it turns to block the road, a man with a shotgun gets out, stops all the cars and checks them. If they don’t like someone, they detain them.
Even before we left, about 200 people were kidnapped, many were released, but some vanished without a trace. Beside that, my wife has thyroid issues; she has to take Euthyrox - and it was nowhere to be found and no way to order more. We would start each morning looking for it. At the end, she stopped talking and didn’t want to go. We had a fight in the evening, but decided to try to make it out and took our neighbor with her kids with us. We could leave towards Zaporizhzhya, but the drivers raised the fare to 150 dollars per person. And the queue for the evacuation buses was huge. The neighbor went there with her kids (6, 4, and 1.5 years old) for a week, and couldn’t board a bus.
“Don’t worry, you are home now”
Anyway, she made signs saying Children, and white pieces of cloth. It was on April 9. On the way we saw a lot of destroyed vehicles, even though they took some to Crimea. Every checkpoint was a humiliation: the guards are beaten down, hungry, but they are begging for cigarettes and poking everywhere: pockets, purses. We had to reset the phones to factory settings. They turned all clothes inside out and made the men undress. But some were okay: oh, kiddos, don’t be afraid, I have kids too. We had to pass 15 checkpoints over 70 km.