You Don’t Even Know Me

You don’t even know me, and the place of my birth, the rich valleys, the beautiful mountains, touching the sky. You choose not to see the breathtaking scenery, the bright colored culture of these people so misunderstood. You fail to see the beauty in the endless desert sun the oasis of a date palm or two in the glowing backdrop of a desert sky. You don’t understand how these people could have built such wondrous buildings, each a grand palace in it’s own right. You don’t see the rivers and the lakes nourishing the bright, quiet, and serene landscapes of my beautiful place of birth, where my roots first sank into the ground and have remained since, even so far away.

After this little spiel here, many of you, my dear readers, will not recognize the beautiful country of my birth, because the media, and Hollywood, and perhaps Fox news have painted the picture for you. You only hear of the political troubles, troubling the people of my home, and the minority that has somehow represented the rest of us, even when we share the same hopes, dreams and ambitions as you. Yes, you.

Now, you’re probably wondering, what is this strange young woman ranting on about? What is this mysterious country I have failed to see in the same way? 

It’s the often misunderstood nation of Pakistan.

Yes we have our problems, but as a Pakistani-American, I see things both ways. I understand how sometimes fear or even plain lack of education can drive people away from learning about all the nice things in a strange, far away country.

I understand that perhaps explaining every little detail about my country will probably be very boring to you, or even unbearably long, so I’ve decided I would touch up on something that happens to stand out to me the most at the moment, the scenery.

I’m about to go on about the landscape so here we go…

Pakistan is one of the only countries in which you can travel from one end (the north) to the other (way down yonder), and see a totally different climate and different culture altogether! The northern areas are predominantly mountain ranges, many of which we share with our neighbours Nepal, China and India (sorry if I missed any other neighbors :P). Something cool about these ranges is that we have one of the hardest mountains to climb, Nanga Prabat, as well as some of the most beautiful lakes at very high altitudes, like Lake Saif-ul-Malook…

Nanga Parbat which is south of the Indus and on the west of the Himalayas

Lake Saif-ul-Malook, what a beauty! 😀

We also have quite a bit of valleys in Pakistan too, such as Neelam, Kalash and Swat valleys (ignore the misleading media coverage of the Swat valley, I assure you it’s not that scary -_-). They too are quite pretty, and often overlooked because, let’s face it, we don’t get to see how pretty they are when you see gun-wielding militants roaming around in the pictures and videos you see on TV or elsewhere. Ah yes, thank you media..

Swat Valley 🙂 Behold, the skies are blue and the grass is this surreal color of green!

Neelam Valley. Look guys, if you didn’t know this was Pakistan, how many of you would’ve thought this was Europe…?

Kalash Valley, here you’ll see some pretty distinct cultural differences from other parts of Pakistan. The people here are so colorful! (even though they aren’t pictured)

Ah yes, now for the place you probably think of when you hear Pakistan, the desert! Ok maybe not but anyway….Pakistan has some nice deserts too. Despite the harsher living conditions, the people there have a colorful culture unique to them much like the people of Kalash and Hunza Valley. They have their own unique art, language (a few actually), as well as style of dress and whatnot. We have the Cholistan desert, which upon stretching for miles meets its cousin the Thar desert (note: I’m just giving a brief overview of places that stood out to me, but Pakistan has way more to offer mmk?)

Thar Desert, a vast expanse of sand. And trees, and surely people..somewhere

Cholistan Desert, and pictured is Derawar fort.

Yes, I know for all those who have probably caught on by now, I have missed quite a few landscapes in Pakistan (la-duh it’s alot, I mean alot to cover), but here’s a look at the other parts of Pakistan, the beaches and rivers, bodies of water..

There’s quite a few rivers in Pakistan as there is valleys, but some of the biggest are the Indus, Satluj, Jhelum, and Gilgit, and Chenab rivers. Something unique about the rivers here is that just like the rivers in Latin America, we have blind river dolphins swimming in our lovely rivers…

Gilgit River, look at the color of the water :0

Jhelum River…

River dolphin 🙂

Here is a look at the beaches in places like Karachi and Balochistan:

Clifton Beach in Karachi

Gwadar Beach in Balochistan…So pretty ^.^

 

Well, although this is really just scraping the surface, I’ll try my best to cover more things as time passes, but readers please, please go ahead and try to find out things about this lovely, misunderstood country, because this post being only an intro, I can’t cover everything. It’s up to you guys to find the treasures beneath the sand, and all the wonderful things that makes Pakistan so loved by the people that have seen it’s beauties. 🙂

P.S. If anyone has any suggestions of what I should add, please let me know! I want to hear what you all think of this introduction, have I opened up your eyes to another perspective?

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