Have a fabulous 2012


Gaga: Rest in Peace (b.2002 - d.2010)

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Leaving Pakistan Makes me Cranky...

Islamabad: A view from my room - minutes before storms

...while living in Pakistan is sometimes frustrating especially, seeing so much talented youth being wasted, natural resources misused and a new trend of give no damn attitude towards the country but still, leaving it, HURTS. It is a wonderful place. If you have lived in Pakistan, even for a short time, you will miss this country. It still offers a lot to explore, to experience and to learn from. Still, in the madness, you may come across really wonderful people, breathtaking landscapes, beautiful  weather and great food.

When I'm away, I  always plan that on my return to Pakistan, I'll learn a skill or two, work on this or that project but once, I'm in the country - the rules of the game change. Connections, nepotism, loose talk, bribery, unnecessary favors, indiscriminate lying, blocking of information  are just  the tip of the iceberg. I can NOT handle it and step back.

I've seen many good people being marginalized and this MUST change. 

On a lighter side, I was happy to see geckos (had NOT seen one in years) again, and for some time, enjoyed the power shutdowns, water shortages, UPS batteries screaming for water to be poured into them, armies of domestic help, great food and fresh fruits, artisans at work, change of weather in minutes, rains  in Islamabad (which reminds me of the Swiss landscape (but for a micro second). This wishful thinking will blast away when: men and eyes follow you everywhere, garbage bags track you down, when cars are ready to run over you, when you will realize that the city administration has forgotten to make pavements and where they made them - people prefer chauffeured cars.

I saw an incredible increase in men riding donkeys, juggling of 4 or 5 children and a woman on a motor bike, women in hijabs out numbering women in chaddars, huge number of scavengers - gypsies of Pakistan(same type as the Roma people) and a strong presence of Afghan+Somali refugees. I saw huge waste of water in sectors such as F-10, F-11, F-8 (ma be others as well) where cars were washed in the porches by their drivers who suffer water shortage at homes on daily basis. Number of barbed wired houses has more than doubled, civic sense has gone to zero level. All this made me realized, I'm home. It is a colorful place with great divide!

I was asked the weirdest of questions by a few gentlemen (hearing I have come from Vilayat (overseas)) such as: if I smoke or drink? or one fucktard asked me during a conference in Islamabad if I believe in Allah? Who doesn't in Pakistan, I asked back?? What sort of a question was this?? Have I missed a lot in a decade's absence?? Fellow countrymen/women will leave no chance to ask you the most unexpected questions so prepare yourself, do NOT forget that they mind your business more than their own. By the way, we used to be quite descent, well-cultured people a few years ago. Where has it all gone?

Pakistan has changed in layers and hasn't changed at all!