Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Visiting family

I recently returned from a 2 week trip to Pakistan, to visit close and extended family. Two weeks seemed to fly by, especially since almost 60 hours were spent directly in travel. A couple of flight changes, several hours in layovers, and I eventually made it into Lahore. I spent a day in Lahore with close friends, before driving to my parents' home in Burewala, in the heart of the Punjab province. In addition to parents, I have a large extended family, many settled in that area, and it was a joy to meet some of my great nieces and nephews for the first time. It had been more than 10 years since I visited Burewala. I took lots of photos during this trip, but sadly I lost almost all of them along with my stolen laptop. I did, however, get my laptop back (long story for another day), minus the photographs, and any other files that had been saved on it, and not backed up.

I had spent hours with Abbu, going through old albums and envelopes full of faded photographs, some dating as far back as 1951, when my father was in high school. I also took photos of many of them, with the hopes to share them on this blog. Unfortunately, I no longer have those files, but my father still has the photographs. Hopefully some day, I'll be able to go through them again. Reminiscing about my childhood, with my parents in Ireland, and learning about Abbu's school and college years was a treat I'll never forget. I did have a few photos of my parents' beautiful home, still salvaged on my phone.

The main family room:

The guest room where I stayed:

A sample of Abbu's beautiful Islamic calligraphy. He has a lot of talent!

The formal sitting room:

 Me with Choti Ammi:

My sweet Tahira and my oldest nephew Usman:

We took a coach to Islamabad and spent the last 3 days of my trip there, before flying out from Islamabad Airport. It was great to have my father and father-in-law together after a very long time. And by the way, the large white ball of fur is Oscar, the deaf Persian cat, sitting in Abba's lap.

It was great to spend time with my little niece Leena, unfortunately all our selfies were erased with the laptop. This is her riding her trike on the driveway:

I have a handful more photographs saved on a journal app I used, called Day One. I should be able to download those, so there will be more photos to come. This is a photo that Nadia (my sister in law) sent me, the only one for now, that I have with sweet little Leena.

Now that Abbu and Choti Ammi have permanently moved back to Pakistan, and are settled in their lovely new home, we are hoping that they will be able to make more trips to visit us here in the States. Their grandchildren still have more memories to make with them!


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