Category Archives: calcutta

home & calcutta

Shideh & Manata, I really enjoyed reading your posts. When I think of the places I call “home”, it is defined by the people who are there. In the past 3 years I have lived in 3 different cities. And each time I have left one place, the new place never feels like home even when all my “stuff” is there. There is a cliche that says “home is where the heart is”. I find it very true. I speak of my “homeland” as Pakistan, though I have never lived there for longer than a few weeks. My “home” is still in the small town where I grew up, although I haven’t lived there in 7 years. I feel at “home” when I am with my family & the dear friends I call my ‘family’. For me, it is not the boundaries of our houses or the soil of a nation that make me love a place or make it a home. It is my experiences, the people and my association with that place.

Last summer I went to Calcutta, India as a chaperone for high school students who were traveling to do hospice work with the poor. Calcutta is where my father was born and where my great-grandfather opened the first optics shop that turned into the family business spanning three generations and four countries. Continue reading


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Filed under belonging, calcutta, culture, homeland, India, love, Pakistan

born into brothels

The following series of videos are the documentary “Born into Brothels”, winner of the 77th Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature. It’s a visually amazing and heartfelt documentary about a series of young people living in the red light district in Calcutta and a photographer who introduces them to the restorative power of photography. 

(Born into Brothels 1 0f 8 )

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Filed under calcutta, India, photography, youth