Muzaffarabad – Day of Accidents

Having lunch in a 'hotel' and got invited

Having lunch in a ‘hotel’ and got invited

March 19, 2006

The day was started by a missed call, missed call from God. It was a small aftershock early in the morning. I was in the middle of my dream, and suddenly felt that my matras was rocked. It was exactly the same feeling as when I stayed in a cheap hotel in India, and got a room next to the main road, and the whole room would be rocked by the passing trucks or buses. The aftershock, a real earthquake, brought me back to India in my dream. And just realized I was in a tent in Pakistan side of Kashmir when I got up.

After a hot and sunny day yesterday, today it changed drastically to be cloudy and raining. Many of the plans today were altered, and instead of going to another village, I returned back to Muzaffarabad today. I met the boy who was so desperate to kiss me before, and he gave greetings, and said to me, “A beautiful… piece of meat”, and laughed. Hmm…quite a command of English vocabulary. I didn’t find this special anymore, as the day before three other different guys successfully kissed me when I didn’t notice, like when I was reading message or playing game on my mobile. They did it for joke, but it was indeed so bizarre for boys to kiss another boy to show to other boys for fun (in our country we do like sexy and funny conversation but just merely oral jokes. Here sometimes they play the action also).

I returned back to the office of the NGO, preparing some photos to be printed. Mr. Ejaz went with the Pathan driver, Jahangir, to the city. Apparently Jahangir was over speeding, and accidentally the car bumped into a woman crossing the street. The woman fell down to the street. Fainted. Jahangir was stupefied by the situation. Not any single words came from his mouth. The woman, got mad after the faint, brought them to quarrel. It ended up when Mr. Ejaz had to pay 2,000 Rupees for the accident.

Lunch time, the guys from the NGO and I went to a Kabuli restaurant. There were many Afghanis working here opening restaurant, offering huge variety of food from Kabuli pullau, keema, until Kabuli kebab. I was chatting with an Afghan, claimed came from Kabul. As my Farsi developed a little bit more that I could handle a very simple conversation in the language, the guy was so excited. But the excitement went more further. I didn’t notice this before the guys of our NGO started giggling. Rashid said to me that the Afghan guy was desperate looking at me. The Afghan was staring at me, deeply, and red-eared (this was told by Rashid).
Rashid then asked the Afghan, “Kamra hai aap ke pas? (do you have room?)”

The Afghan, still staring at me, replied by instinct, “Yes!!!”
The NGO guys fell into laughter. The Afghan, realized that he was the object, became embarrassed. His face was even getting more reddish. Rashid then said to the guy that he could get me for 200 Rupees (3 dollars). I felt that he set my price a little bit too low.

Later on the night, I was with Jahangir going to the city to print out some photos. Muzaffarabad is amazingly very bright at night, as every household turned on all of the bulbs in the building, as now electricity was free after the disaster. The city looks like a sea of stars, climbing from earth joining the real stars up there. And we saw another accident on the main road, a Suzuki with a driver and conductor was bumped by another car. The Suzuki was completely damaged, the glass was broken, and the two men were fainted. People, as in India, were very curious about the world. And this kind of accident aroused people’s curiosity. The two victims were immediately escorted to somewhere, but the spectators were still there watching the damaged poor car.

A day which was started by missed call, and ended by accidents. But it was not a bad day anyway. People of Muzaffarabad went to a party (mahfil) with a Nat singer from Karachi. I have been told that the show, free entry, cost around US$3,000 to organize. And everybody was enjoying the party, religious and melodious one, from midnight until the morning came. I chose not to join, as I was exhausted the whole day.

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