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Finding Neverland Blog Archive

Friday, August 21, 2015

Humans of New York in Pakistan (Part 2)

Humans of New York in Pakistan
"There were no paved roads here when I was a boy. We had to walk for 3 days to get to places that only take 2 hours now. There was never any money for school. We had no wealth or property. Beginning at six years old, I cleaned dishes at a restaurant until 9 pm. Then I would go to sleep and start again. All my money went to my parents. I'd hear stories about cities and airplanes, but they seemed like fairy tales. I'd dream of visiting these places, but before I could get too far, I'd be hungry again. So I grew up thinking that the entire world was like our valley. I thought all children lived like me. Then one day when I turned 16, I had the opportunity to visit to the city of Gilgit. I couldn't believe it. I saw a boy eating at a restaurant with his father. He was my age. He was wearing a school uniform. I broke down in tears."

(Hunza Valley, Pakistan)


“I wanted to be a singer. I loved music. I practiced all the time and worked on writing songs for myself. I loved sad songs especially. But the community put so much pressure on my mother. My father passed away when I was twelve. And everyone kept telling my mother that a girl could not be something like a singer without her father’s permission. My father wouldn’t have minded. He was always so supportive of me. But my mom was so worried about what people would think. She begged me to stop. She grew so nervous that I finally told her, ‘It's OK, Mom. I’ll stop.’ Now I just listen to music. It’s too sad for me to sing anymore.”

(Hunza Valley, Pakistan)


Humans of New York in Pakistan
"What's your favorite thing about your sister?"
"Her happiness."

(Hunza Valley, Pakistan)


Humans of New York in Pakistan
"I grew up in the village behind me. It's very beautiful here but there are few opportunities. Whenever I think about my children's prospects, I grow sad. I have nothing to provide for them so they'll probably end up like me, taking whatever work they can just to survive. My parents died when I was ten. I went to live with my aunt and my uncle. They never gave me grief. They never made me feel bad. But they were also poor, and every time we sat down to eat, I felt like I was stealing from their family. The guilt grew so bad that when I turned 15, I tried to build a shed for myself. I lived there for about six months. But then the winter came. And eventually the cold grew stronger than the guilt."

(Hunza Valley, Pakistan)


Humans of New York in Pakistan
"I want to be a chef."
"What's the best part about being a chef?"
"You can make your own dessert."

(Hunza Valley, Pakistan)

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