My name is Aisha. I’m 65 years old, but don’t tell anyone!
I grew up in Bosnia, in a suburb of Sarajevo, which is our capital. It was a good childhood, even under the Soviet block. My mother was a great women. She brought up my sister and me. We had many friends, and thought all Soviet things were good. That was before the war. The old city is very beautiful. It is all stone streets, and lovely churches. We were Orthodox and went every week to Mass. My happiest memories are walking back with my sister and stopping at the pastry shop.
During the civil war, I moved to Berlin as a young woman. I lived in Berlin for two years. It was hard to leave. But Germany was very kind to me and I knew it was for the best.
I worked as a seamstress in a shop, and that was enough to pay bills. I could not speak very well in German, but people were nice and helped.
I also nannied as “Babushka” for a very nice family. The Schmidts.I watched their children grow up. I grew up, too. I was older before I knew it. Past time for school.
Then, I went back. The war was over. I wanted to go home. I had not heard from my family for over a year.
My house had been turned to ruins. All my money, my family, gone. Mafia, I say to myself. In Berlin, I found nothing but trouble when I returned. Mafia, I say to myself. It was time for big changes, so I came to America to start over. I have often found that it is best to make a big leap in order to get un-stuck, yes?
Now, I live in America. I have my own apartment, a few good friends, and I have discovered skechers Shape Ups. I work as a janitor for a university, and for a hospital. I work a lot, but it keeps me busy and thinking about the nice things. Not the past.
There are some things I miss in Bosnia. I miss my family most of all, but they are gone. I miss the music, the fiddle players. I miss the wild dances in the city square, and the men with the flowers who would ask you for a dance, I miss the stone streets and buildings of the old city, but I know that they too are gone.
Then, there are the things I love about America. I love the safety, and I like not to worry about neighbors. I like democracy, and I like the openness of the community here., I also love all the choices. So much food, so many clothes, and so many medias! There was one paper in Bosnia, now I reads three, I can compare and make my own decisions.
I think a lot about my two countries, and it is my reflections and thoughts on them I want to share with you.