Foreigners in own land

Lahore Pakistan


My sister and me near the fountain in the grounds of Kinnaird College for Women, Lahore. We had mixed feelings - away from the family in Kenya and a new environment to adjust in. 

With friends from Kenya

When we first landed in the Lahore Airport, late 1972, we were skeptical but excited. Our uncle, Khalu Islam had come from Sialkot to pick us and drop us at the Kinnaird College. We were impressed that the administration had strict rules about not allowing any male guests into the premises as it was a Women's College and the Hostel was inside the huge compound.

We soon discovered that there were many international students and to our delight we met girls from Kenya. 


Zahida Chaudhary with Shaista Karim - both from Kenya

So happy together

Rehana Chaudhary and Shaista Karim.

Class fellows

College Identification Card

Precious Document

Hostel mates

In our hostel room

Our abode in the hostel was a large double room as we sisters were sharing it. The simple furniture had two single beds, two study tables, two chairs and two small cupboards. The bedding and curtains were provided. It was a spartan life!! But the room was cleaned every day and the laundery was done weekly by the workers who were very humble and polite.

There were two British Hostel wardens - Miss Preston and Miss Bradshaw - they were really kind, sensible and caring ladies. They chose us to become 'chaperones' to younger students when they wanted to shop in the town.

Singing in the College Choir

Every Friday morning was special assembly for all the students. Apart from the Hostel students, there were many day scholars as well. They hailed from all provinces of Pakistan and represented all religions including Muslims, Christians and Hindus. There was no discrimination in any sphere. The medium of teaching was English and a wide range of subjects from the Arts and Science were offered. The teachers and professors were competent in their jobs and offered assistance readily.

Land of our birth

In praise of Pakistan. A prayer for the well being of the land and its people. Pakistan Zindabad!

With Rukhsana

She was a very sweet girl and became our good friend. She was from Sargodha. Sometimes I wonder how all our college friends are faring now -we unfortunately lost contact with each other long ago. I tried the college Alumni once but could not find any one familiar.

Our Science Project

As we were science students we loved the practicals. We took part in an inter collegiate Science Fair and won a prize for our project on Osmosis and Diffusion. 

Outside college dining hall

Meals were served in the Hall near the Hostels. The breakfast was almost always a watery porridge, bread and tea. Personally I hated it. Many students went to the college canteen to have naan, omellette, kebabs or burgers. Of course you could not always go there as you had to be frugal with the money sent to you by your hard working parent abroad! 

Lunch was around 12.30 onwards, tea at 4.00 and the dinner gong went on 7 p.m. The food was nothing to brag about - usually the seasonal vegetables, rice, daals, rotis and the ocassional chicken, fish or beef. We persevered and luckily never got sick!


Yearly accomplishments were appreciated. Safia Din recieving a prize.

With Sabeeya in Sialkot

During the holidays we travelled by mini bus to Sialkot accompanied by our beloved Uncle Slaam. It was a short drive that took about 2 hours. We usually stayed at our Naani's house, Bijli Ghar, Sialkot. It was an antique, small double storey house that had been built by our grandfather in the 1940's. At that time uncle Slaam, aunt Minnie, their three small children, uncle Jooshi, aunt Fijan and their two little kids, and our old grand-mother (Africa wali) were residing in that house. They all loved to host us and all the children became attached and very protective towards us.

Naani's house Sialkot

Aunt Hafiz, Minnie, Zohra and their children. They all gave us so much affection and care during the short times that we visited them. I still remember the karely, tandoori rotis and phindis that they used to serve us.


A few time we visited Suragpur, on the outskirts of Sialkot City. Our Tayaji Yusuf lived there with his family. We experienced village life there - without electricity or toilets. But the love that we received was uncomparable. The saag, makki ki roti, fresh makhan, kheer with sugarcane juice and the special achars....the thoughts are still mouth watering!!! 

Rasheed's wedding, Suragpur

Our cousin, Rasheed who was in the military at that time got married to Fida. We attended the wedding with Khalla Shidan and cousin Shahda.

Naani with grand children

Shahda, Zahida and Tara with Bebeji. Our grandmother doted on all her grand children and cried for her son and daughters who were in Kenya. She longed to see them and got extremely depressed in her late years. To our chagrin she passed on while we were in Pakistan. We still miss her and pray God blesses her in her heavenly abode.


During the summer holidays, we visited our family friends in Rawalpindi. Mr Akram Niaz, his wife Saeeda, children Khalid, Naima, Shahida and Bilal used to live in Nairobi but decided to settle back in Pakistan. We enjoyed remembering old times, the picnics, house visits in Eastleigh and Park road and the family gatherings in Nairobi. We went to Muree and Ayubia with them and experienced the air chair lifts, the local markets and the beautiful sceneries in the chilling weather. Such unforgettable memories!

With Faiqa and Tasneem

Tasneem was an amazingly brave person. She was married when she joined our B.Sc. class and had a baby during the final examinations. We all admired her persistence and the support given to her by the husband and family.


During a cultural event, there was a mask theme party. Do you recognise Safia and me? 

With Uzma

Our dear friend Uzma, a lovely girl from Lahore.


Programme for the proceedings of the Graduation in the Hall of Kinnaird College.

Dining in the 'Mess'

A dinner with the parents during the Convocation ceremony


Confirmation of receiving the Degree.

I D '74

Safia Din

I D '74

Shama Din

Prayer and Motto

Fare well

An emotional sight with aunties and cousins at the Lahore International Airport. We were flying back to Kenya.


Always in the heart.

Super cool friends

Shaista and Rehana - always together!

Lahore Airport

We left Pakistan but part of us remained there.

Sweet Success '75

Bachelor of Science in Physics and Mathematics, Punjab University, Lahore.

New aspirations '75

Bachelor of Science in Botany and Zoology, University of Punjab, Lahore.


Safia Butt

13.08.2021 09:45

I enjoyed that immensely You v done a great favor to us all preserving all our lovely memories Well done Shama !God bless you


14.08.2021 01:28

Highly appreciated. See other pages too!!!

Latest comments

19.11 | 07:25

You are so kind. Do see other pages on menu. You will enjoy. Bless you. Luvv.

19.11 | 01:25

Sad to know that Ms M Butt is no more. May her soul rest in eternal peace... Ameen ❤️

19.11 | 01:22

You were my favorite biology teacher. I never forgot you😊

22.06 | 09:34

Thanks dear arfa. Check out other pages on the menu. You will enjoy. God bless.

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