© 2002 Friends of Bosnia  

The Vrajolli Family
We first met Enver Vrajolli in April 1999 in Macedonia. We were looking for a
translator, and as a newly– arrived refugee from Kosovo, Enver was looking for a job. For the next five days we worked together closely, visiting refugee camps. He knew he was lucky to be with his parents and his girlfriend, Aferdita, in a private home rather than in a refugee tent. But his story of a violent exodus from Pristina was no different than the hundreds of thousands of other refugees.

The large photo to the right was taken while Enver’s parents were refugees in Macedonia. After we left, the entire family eventually went to Italy and Germany, before returning to their home in Pristina in December 1999.

When we visited Pristina in January 2000, we were guests at their home on Prilipi Street. Their house survived the war intact, although many of their possessions were stolen. Like everyone else in Pristina, they had little electricity and heat, but they were fortunate to have a wood cookstove that kept their large kitchen and living room warm, and a kerosene lamp for light.

The night before leaving, Aferdita cooked us a magnificent dinner. They were very proud of their pickles which they had hidden in their cellar before being driven out during the war. When they returned eight months later, the pickle jars were untouched. We couldn’t help thinking that their fate could have been like hundreds of thousands of refugees from other parts of the former Yugoslavia who won’t return to their homes for years, if not decades, and, meanwhile, their pickle jars will remain hidden in their cellars.

Enver was fortunate to eventually get a job with UNMIK, although he is barely able to support his family. His education and future have been shattered, but he is overjoyed to be living in a free Kosovo. He and Aferdita got married in the spring of 2000, driving around Pristina with all of their family and friends, honking their horns.



  Above: Mr. & Mrs. Vrajolli as refugees in Macedonia, April 1999.
1) Mrs. Vrajolli and Aferdita at their home in Pristina.
2) Enver (right) in Tetova, Macedonia. April 1999.