Kabul – The First Day of Ramazan

Fantastic breakfast: big bread and bean soup

Fantastic breakfast: big bread and bean soup

Yesterday people were not sure yet whether the fasting month of Ramazan would start today or the day after. “We are waiting for the announcement,” said Abdullah, a driver from Bamiyan. But today, it was clear that the Ramazan started officially. It is one day earlier than in Indonesia, as Afghanistan was following the trend in the Middle East.

For travellers, fasting is not obligatory. Kebab restaurants still prepared their meat and actually you still can eat anything as usual, just not in open way. The restaurant owner made the kebab indoor so that the smell would not invite people who were fasting. The Hazaras are Shiite. Abdullah said that for Shiite it was OK not to fast when travelling, but the Sunni Afghans were very strict about religion and still maintained fasting even when travelling long distance.

As Ramazan started, suddenly the number of travellers dropped dramatically. Usually it was easy to collect passengers to go to Kabul from the bazaar of Bamiyan. But today I had to wait up till two hours until the car filled up. It was a 10 hour journey to Kabul, and when the car reached Maidan Shar, the capital of Wardak province, the unpaved, dusty road suddenly changed to be smooth asphalted road.

“’Jamping’ from distress to ease,” said Babur, the great Moghul king when reaching Yakawlang after the dreadful trip from Chekhcheran. Now I could say the same when reaching Kabul after the long Central route haul.

About Agustinus Wibowo

Agustinus is an Indonesian travel writer and travel photographer. Agustinus started a “Grand Overland Journey” in 2005 from Beijing and dreamed to reach South Africa totally by land with an optimistic budget of US$2000. His journey has taken him across Himalaya, South Asia, Afghanistan, Iran, and ex-Soviet Central Asian republics. He was stranded and stayed three years in Afghanistan until 2009. He is now a full-time writer and based in Jakarta, Indonesia. Contact: Website | More Posts

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