Zahidullah - Green Card Voices


Occupation: Student

Country of Birth: Afghanistan

Current: Minneapolis, MN

“We couldn’t leave the airport because we wouldn’t be let back in if we left. For about ten days, we were stuck in the airport. Then, finally, we were able to get on the plane to fly from Kabul to Kuwait.”

Born in Nangarhār, Zahidullah loved his province for its chapli kabab and oranges, the best in Afghanistan. At school, his favorite subjects were science and geography because they’re related, he says. 

When the Taliban reached Kunar, a nearby province, Zahidullah and his family were fearful. However, after a few days, Zahidullah’s father called and instructed him to bring the family to the airport. Once there, there were many complications due to flights continuously changing and there not being enough flights for all the people trying to leave. For about ten days, the whole family was stuck in the airport because if they left they would not be let in again. Finally, he and his family were able to get on a plane to fly from Kabul to Kuwait.  

From Kuwait, they flew to Texas where they spent four months in a Texan resettlement camp before Zahidullah and his family finally arrived in Minnesota. 

When Zahidullah came to Minnesota, he didn’t immediately experience culture shock. His father went to the shops with his friend, who had lived here for five years, but Zahidullah avoided it for a bit. But after experiencing the markets and shops here, he started to see the differences between the two cultures. How in Afghanistan, they use kilograms, but pounds are used here.

Zahidullah feels his life now is simple. He goes to his school and hangs out with friends on the weekends. For the future, Zahidullah wants to be a lawyer or to study science.