They say figuring out what you want of your life is half the job done. With the difficult part taken care of, it then comes down to how passionate you are to achieve that milestone. In this process at times, the journey is more cherishable than the actual goal itself. In this feature, we try to bring to you the story of people who persevered, took the brunt of life on the chin and still emerged victorious.


It’s no child’s play to move out of your comfort zone to raise a notch up in life against all odds. Reema Patel is one such person we came across who, though from a typical Gujarati background came to a new world called New Zealand and made it her home.



Reema Patel shares her tale with Indian Weekender:


"I was a simple Indian girl born and brought up in a Guajarati village. I come from a traditional and a very conservative society where women are seen as a burden to the parents. I did all my schooling in Gujarati medium and when I finished my education, I strongly felt that all the barriers holding me back just because I was a woman, had to be broken. I moved to the Ahmadabad where I could work and fend for myself without being told that I was a woman.


I always wanted to travel around the world and when I and a friend decided to visit Australia and New Zealand on vacation, it meant I had to part with an entire year’s savings. To say it was totally worth it would be an understatement. The moment I landed in New Zealand, I fell in love with the country and I knew this is the place where I can chase my dreams. I went back to India and worked hard on my English and with my skill sets, I found it easy to get a work visa.


The first place I settled down in New Zealand was in Wellington and my first job was at a local dairy farm. Coming from the hot and humid conditions back in India, the cold in New Zealand did take its toll on me initially as it became unbearable at times. Emotionally as well, I came close to breaking down many times. But with time, things got easier and with helpful friends I had around me, I started to enjoy my stay in New Zealand.


I found the love of my life Jason Stokes, in my next job at a fruit and veggie store. The love I saw in his eyes was enough to make up my mind to spend the rest of my life with him. We are now a family and have moved to Auckland. I can never thank god enough, for where and what I am today. A girl born in a dusty little village in

Gujarat, settled down with family in a place like Auckland…


One of the biggest things that this country has given me is self-respect. It gave me the opportunity in life to express myself and achieve what I wanted to. What I have also learnt from my life is that perseverance always works. Secret to success is that when life asks you if you are ready for the rigor, you got to smile and say, yes!"