Afghanistan: The Friendliest Country

The cover on an Afghan tourism brochure from the 1970’s that I found in a bookstore in Kabul states: Afghanistan, The Friendliest Country. Believe it or not, that’s what I’ve found during my visits there and with the continuing friendships I have made with Afghan people…

…Even though I travel extensively, I was never in a war zone before. There were a few things to get used to. As we left the Kabul Airport, my driver said, “Don’t worry that there is no seat belt,” as he saw me searching along the side of the seat. “I drive slowly.” With that, he floored it, and we raced up the wrong side of the divided street against the oncoming traffic. There are no traffic rules or stop lights in Afghanistan. Traffic when it moves, like spilled milk, goes anywhere there is a space. My driver Nabil’s technique suits the general sense of lawlessness in the air.

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