A Small Adventure

Jan 1, 2011   //   by Hameed   //   long, Uncategorized  //  No Comments

(Note: This is the first post by Hameed. Get used to it!)

I have an Amer­i­can friend named Jere­my. He is my Pash­to lan­guage stu­dent as well. Our friend­ship is very tight, and it goes beyond the teach­ing. One day, Jere­my asked me to trav­el to Kab­ul with him because of secu­ri­ty prob­lems and to help with trans­la­tion on the way from Jalal­abad to Kab­ul. I agreed to his suggestion. 

It was a bright Thurs­day morn­ing of humid sum­mer, promis­ing heat, in July 2008. Every­thing was all set. We took a taxi, and rolled towards Kab­ul. The trip was very fun. We chitchat­ted on the way talk­ing about one top­ic after anoth­er. The time passed very quick­ly. It flew, actu­al­ly. We arrived in Karte-e-Char at 01:00 pm. Tom- the host wasn’t at home that time. The watch­man of his home was a friend­ly slight­ly over­weight man. Not only did he let us go in, but he helped us to car­ry the bags, too. We had the key to Tom’s room by hav­ing called him in advance.
We sat in the room wait­ing for the host to come. We had one taco each at the top of Mahipar Val­ley which hit the spot for an hour. I was very hun­gry and out of patience, so I asked Jere­my to call Tom if he could come so that we would have lunch togeth­er. So he did. Tom said that he could­n’t make it until 8:30 at night. My part­ner asked me if I could wait until 3:30pm for lunch. I was starv­ing, but my cul­ture didn’t let me say no, so I said, “That’s Ok, no biggie.” Final­ly, it was 03:30pm and I thought it was time for lunch beyond the shad­ow of a doubt, when I heard my part­ner said “Hameed, can you wait for three more hours, so that we would have a big din­ner at Rose?” Suit your­self, I replied under breath. ‘What?’ he asked. As…um… as you wish, I said. Jere­my was a man who meant every word he said, but I could­n’t get over how dif­fer­ent he was that day. I missed lunch, and I had to wait for three more hours to eat din­ner. I was very shy and clum­sy. I did­n’t even have the guts to tell him that I was starv­ing. I wait­ed for three hours think­ing about the Amer­i­can cul­ture, Jere­my, and how he could sur­vive with one taco for twelve hours. I would yawn and steal looks at my wrist-watch three con­sec­u­tive hours. I felt like a fish out of water.

Even­tu­al­ly, it was sev­en in the evening. My abdomen began to give low-bat­tery warn­ing by mak­ing fun­ny sounds. Jere­my prob­a­bly heard it. Then he had to take me out to chow down. We entered this west­ern style restau­rant, Rose and had a big meal there. We returned home around 8:30pm. Tom had still not come home. He didn’t come until 9:30. He was a very chum­my young man and had a bub­bly per­son­al­i­ty. He brewed us some tea right after he came to sound very Afghan and good host. We hung out deep into the night. 

Morn­ing came. Andrew, a friend­ly man in the neigh­bor­hood, invit­ed us for break­fast. After the break­fast, I said good­bye to them. Then, I went to vis­it an aunt of mine in Kab­ul. Next, as the day was end­ing and it was get­ting dark­er and dark­er, I stayed at my uncle, Qasim’s home for the night. My uncle and his two chil­dren had just got­ten their visas to Amer­i­ca. Uncle Qasim was extreme­ly hap­py and he was telling me about their planned immi­gra­tion to the U.S.

con­tin­ued reading …