4 - 6
Kabul - Kamikaze
Completely dirty after a two day ride over the rough Hindukush mountains we jumped off a crumbling vehicle in Kabul. The city appeared as a cosmopolitan melting pot everything available. It was arriving like a caravan in the ancient times in Samarkand, Baghdad or Xian. Just it was the capital of shattered Afghanistan in 2002. Someone can imagine the weeks of travel through the country before. The national bank long ran out of paper to print money, therefore we looked around the market to get national cash. There a guy approached us and offered tea and a lift to his house, where water was available to wash down the dust of the mountains. A welcoming invitation and after some minutes Kamikaze - how the host was called by his friends, sitting in the shadow of a fig tree - showed them proudly his vegetable garden. It got obvious, how he is financing the big Landcruiser and the satellite phones on the table in the back. Of course no questions about that, that is common sense - necessary to survive the long way south to Kabul. It already got dark when the party was over and the way back was saver by foot than with stoned Kamikaze steering the bulky Landcruiser through the narrow lanes. Again common sense. Some guys with Kalashnikovs were hanging around taking care of the security of the neighbourhood and the walk to the hotel - more a shack with some rotten toilets in the corridor and some rope beds scattered around a bare concrete room with one small window - was again no problem. Surviving got a daily manner for us, like for everybody else around here.