Editor’s Note: As the 26th anniversary of Ukraine’s independence as a nation approaches on Aug. 24, the Kyiv Post is asking Ukrainians who live abroad to comment on their lives and their reflections on their homeland. To participate, Ukrainians living abroad should send a photo and answers to the following questions to Kyiv Post chief editor Brian Bonner at email@example.com
Kyiv Post: Where are you from in Ukraine?
Daria Mingaraeva: Kyiv.
KP: When did you leave; why did you leave?
DM: 7 years ago, for studies.
KP: How did you end up where you live?
DM: It all started with studies, got a job in the UK
KP: Do you ever regret that you are not in Ukraine – why or why not?
DM: Hahaha. Don’t. Best decision in my life. Fair attitudes, market offers more variety, I get fair pay for my skills.
KP: What do you miss most about Ukraine?
DM: Don’t miss it at all to be frank.
KP: What do you miss least about Ukraine?
DM: Bureaucracy, traffic, dirty streets, ugly adverts, common people’s blind devastation, laziness and mentality, climate, pretenders-no-doers, people being always late, average restaurants, bad service, parking mess, etc.
KP: Does where you live have more opportunities for you than in Ukraine?
DM: I’m a fashion business consultant, I fleet from brand to brand, choose my own schedule and there’s no such profession in Ukraine.
KP: What relatives/friends are left back in Ukraine?
DM: My mom, a few acquaintances.
KP: Do they visit you or do you visit them? Often?
DM: Both. A day, a week, a month…
KP: With Ukraine coming up to its 26th anniversary of national independence, how do you feel about your homeland? Is it making progress as a nation? Or not so much?
DM: I feel lucky I’ve left. Yeah, sure, Ukraine is moving towards a new kind of covered-up corruption.
KP: What would it take for you to return?
KP: What do you wish for your country?
DM: To wake up and act. If the world knew more about our slave mentality, Ukrainians would make a great laughingstock.
KP: Do you think that wish will come true?
DM: Not in a century. I definitely won’t be around to witness the change.