The scheme shows the alternative path that Zakyeh Mahmoud Qasrawi (80 yrs old) has to use to reach her house since the closure of Al-Shuada street in 2006. Her main entrance is on Al-Shuhada street and now it is completely blocked. Today the elderly woman uses the main entrance of her neighbor's home, located on a parallel street, she climbs up on their roof terrace, reaches the rooftop of the building next to hers and enters her house through a little door that had to be made right after the closure of Al- Shuhada street.
There are two doors in the house that Zakyeh Mahmoud Qasrawi has lived in for 56 years. She is 80 years old. During the curfew of 2005, the door leading out to Shuhada street was welded shut by soldiers while the family was still inside, and it has not been opened since. Trapped in their home, the family decided to make a new door in the other wall and created an entrance by force. This door is small and leads out to a narrow path that runs through several courtyards to the souq. She is allowed to use her balcony, which is protected by a fence financed by her own money, but she still does not dare venture out there in fear of settler attacks. She is afraid to turn on the light in the living room and to go there at night, and she never uses the two rooms closest to Shuhada street. Before the street’s complete closure, her family was under frequent attacks by settlers who threw rocks at the windows and broke the glass and window panes at nighttime. When her family walked on the street, the settlers spit on them, hurled insults at them, and targeted them with rocks and skunk water. Sometimes they would come and dance in front of the door. The army did not stop or prevent the settler’s attacks. The soldiers used to come here many times. Once, they forced Zakyeh and her family out on the street and slept in the house for the night with a soldier standing in the door.
She now lives here alone. When her children lived with her, they were often kept at home for their safety. Once, the daughter was alone upstairs when settlers broke into the house. They attacked her and pulled out some of her hair, but she managed to escape. Nowadays, things are different. “We don’t see them, they don’t see us,” Zakyeh says. “We are scared, the soldiers are scared, I don’t want to live in fear. I’m ready to live in peace.” She tells us that she is happy to see internationals here. It makes her feel important. This house is her home, she tells us. She will stay here until her last day.