One day it will all make sense
I’ve often had deep, insightful conversations with cab drivers. One such was in London earlier this month. He was speaking on the phone in a tongue that sounded very familiar. “Are you Afghani?” I asked and he was taken aback.
“How do you know?”
“Your language sounded just like what I heard in Kite Runner.”
He laughed aloud and wondered how I could remember what was spoken in a film.
We talked about Pashtun language, the Afghan culture, drug trafficking, Taliban…The distance to my friend’s place in outer London just melted away.
“I’ll tell you what’s the problem with my country. Anyone, even you can just go to any village, select the oldest man in the village sitting outside his house, become his friend and say I need a 100 men by tomorrow. If he likes you, he will say yes and give you 100 men with no questions asked! Now you can make those men do anything, kill or steal, just anything!
“When I go back home to Afghanistan, I feel like an alien. People there have no credibility. They’ll say I will come to meet you at 8 am tomorrow and when you go at 8 am, that person will not even have woken up from sleep! And the mosques there. I do not understand why the imam has to talk about politics. Don’t people go to places of worship to pray? Why do they go to listen to political speeches about something that’s happening in Palestine or Iraq? Then they start asking for donations. Everyone asks for donations. When I refuse to go to the mosque, my relatives start mocking and calling me British. It’s hard. I love my country but I cannot live there any more.”