Kübra Ünverdi was born in Pakistan and lived there until she was 9. Even though it has been two years since she left Pakistan and settled in Bosnia and Herzegovina, she still lives there in her dreams. She depicts her friends, the house where she lived, and the mango tree in the garden in her pictures. Living in Pakistan with her Bosnian friends is her greatest dream!
Kübra Ünverdi is 11 years old. She was born in Lahore as the first child to educationist parents who were teaching at the PakTurk educational institutions at that time. Since she lived in Lahore until she was 9, Kübra considers herself a Pakistani. These days, she lives in Bosnia and Herzegovina, so far away from Pakistan. In 2018, she and her family had to leave the country of her birth and early childhood to settle in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Kubra’s body is in Bosnia and Herzegovina, but her mind and thoughts linger in Pakistan… She keeps on recounting her life and friends there. She tells us how she misses everything about the country where she was born and has considered as her homeland. So much so that, she draws the pictures and the floor plan of her previous residence in Pakistan to make it more vivid for her Bosnian friends while she narrates her memories to them in much detail.
I have new friends, but …
Kübra misses the friends he had in Pakistan the most. Of course, she made new friends in Bosnia and Herzegovina but her friends with whom she learned to talk and played home occupy an entirely unique place in her heart. Even though she may possibly return to Pakistan one day, she also does not wish to leave her new friends behind: “I would love to take my friends to Pakistan to live with them there.”
Pakistan’s spice-blent cuisine comes second in her wish-list. In the first year of her arrival in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kübra could not eat anything at her school’s cafeteria. The food felt bare and bland for her. Thankfully, her mother compensated this lack of taste at home by cooking Pakistani food for Kübra with the spices she had brought from Pakistan.
‘It is sad to be forgetting Urdu’
Keen on drawing, Kübra draws the pictures of her previous home in order not to forget Pakistan and to be able to narrate her life there to her new friends. She draws and points at all details including the verandas, staircases, the furniture and the paraphernalia, not forgetting to add her favourite mango tree in the garden…
She is so sad as she tells her Urdu has slipped. She says, “I don’t want to forget Pakistan and Urdu”. She dreams of taking her new friends along for a visit to Pakistan: “I consider myself a Pakistani, and I sincerely wish to return to Pakistan one day. I have very nice friends here too. I wish I would be able to take them along with me to live in Pakistan as one.”