Far, far away, over the seven seas and seven hills, is my homeland, Bosnia and Herzegovina…
My name is Zeljana Zubac, and recently I have introduced another name into my life to fit in with the system, so please call me Anna!

I arrived in Australia in December 1995, as a refugee from the war that affected and destroyed Bosnia.
It seems to me like yesterday, everything was so strange to me, the Australian way of living, language barrier, and cultural differences. Summer in the middle of winter, cockroaches and spiders, the list goes on.

However I remember those days as days of great challenge, for me and my family. What I also remember was a great deal of personal commitment and determination to rebuild my life from the beginning. I felt like a Phoenix, rising from the ashes.

Back in Bosnia we had a comfortable life. We believed in human values, we had our own culture, history and heritage, and our own business. In a split second everything was gone. However I was fortunate, my family and I survived. The certainty is that the pain and memories will always be part of my life. I have learnt to live with that, and I did not allow the pain to turn my life into madness and hatred.

Australia is a country of great opportunities and on my voyage I have explored so many avenues. My special thanks go to the Professors and teachers at The School of Business, Griffith University, where I graduated as a Batchelor of Business, majoring in accounting, marketing and Tourism. They had enormous influence on my life.

Today I feel Australia is my home, I feel secure. I like my job, my colleagues, my neighbours, and even a pie does not taste too bad.

We have learnt to consume life with a small spoon, when you have been close to death you know how to survive. Nothing is a surprise now.

My dream is to be an auditor, to be a CPA and open a private accounting business.

I started this article as a fairy tale, which believe me it wasn’t always, I will finish with the old Frank Sinatra song, “I did it my way!”