The story of an American falling in love with Pakistan sounds fascinating, doesn’t it? Well, let’s tell you an even better tale. This is a story of an American girl Emily Hauze, who not only fell in love with Pakistan but is also trying her best to improve Pakistan’s image worldwide. It sounds like a fairy tale, however, it is a true story, showing her love for Pakistan in a way that certainly needs to be appreciated by all of us.
A little something about Emily first; she hails from Tennessee, moved later to Pennsylvania, USA, and is a photographer, a blogger, an art lover, a culture-enthusiast and a passionate individual. She studied German literature and music in her bachelor’s and master degrees in Pennsylvania. She is an avid student, ever eager to learn all forms of cultures and arts. She is fascinated by dance, literature, theatre and music.
She has already visited Pakistan multiple times, four to be exact, and still wishes to explore more and more. She says that she wants to visit the country twice a year. She doesn’t have to spend much as her friends in Pakistan never let her to pay for anything, which speaks for the hospitality of her hosts.
The curiosity to explore more and more, especially historical and cultural sites always gets the better of her every time. What she does is pack her bag and book a ticket to Pakistan, where the cultural heritage is abundant and the foods are delicious, people are friendly and treat her with respect. When asked about the reason behind her visits to Pakistan in an interview by a travel blog Jovago Pakistan, she reflected:
The question of a “reason to visit Pakistan” is almost irrelevant, because the truth is that Pakistan has given me a reason to do almost everything that I do. Discovering and sharing Pakistan has become my true calling.
She said that the people back in America don’t really know much about Pakistan, some people do have a dubious impression of Pakistan as a struggling country. Before her first visit, she never really knew anything about Pakistan and had no perception about the country. However, she started exploring and researching about the cultural heritage of Pakistan to know what she can expect from Pakistan.
Emily feels that she belongs in Pakistan, she has a family here and that she has never received this kind of welcome anywhere in the world. This is what makes Pakistan different from other countries. The warmth and the homecoming-like feeling whenever she visits Pakistan has no parallel. She also spoke about her longing to return to Pakistan again and again, saying:
There are a million other reasons — more to discover, learn, photograph, write about, share — but at heart it is a simple longing to return to my second home.
Pakistan is her second home, that’s how much she loves Pakistan and its people. She thinks that her connection with Pakistan is a direct one, all her friends are there and she has a loving family in Pakistan.
If someone speaks unfairly of Pakistan, it is painful to me, just as much as when America is insulted. I am not a disinterested journalist coming to Pakistan with neutral emotions. I care about Pakistan because it has become my own.
Emily has been doing her best to promote a positive image of her second home, be it through her blog, social media or displaying Pakistani culture by wearing traditional Sindhi-Pakistani wardrobe in America. She intends to promote Sindhi literature by translating the rich cultural poetry and sharing it with the West. The fact that she talks so much about Sindh is because of her attachment to the region, she has seen almost all of Sindh during her visits.
Ms. Hauze has been a fan of Mughal architecture from her childhood and Lahore made her wishes to see that in real, come true. She absolutely loved the Badshahi Masjid, the Tomb of Jahangir and Lahore Qila. She wants her fellow Americans and other foreigners to visit the serene shrine of Abdul Latif Bhitai in Sindh as well as Mohenjo Daro; which takes you back to the glorious past.
The foods served in Pakistan had a peculiar delicious taste, Chai (tea) stole her heart particularly. According to her it is a symbol of the hospitality and relaxation and that it is very tempting compared to the tea the western world has. The real Pakistan is far more enchanting and it’s not like the media portrays Pakistan to be. In the end of her interview she said nothing else but ‘Pakistan Zindabad’.
This article originally appeared on Jovago Pakistan.