Love and Death; or, Time to Go Home

Delhi, Hindustan 2:21 p.m. It’s hard to write now, because the tears are still filling up my eyes and rolling down my cheeks. One of the many things left unwritten in recent days has been Sara’s, and to a lesser extent my own, adoption of a sick and tiny little puppy in Mazar-e-Sharif and subsequent adventure…

A weekend in Balkh & Mazar-e-Sharif

Back in Kabul Afghanistan 8:05 a.m. Well, so much for flying to Delhi last week. We just couldn’t drag ourselves away yet from this first engagement with Afghanistan—so we changed our tickets (at no cost, thank you Afghan air travel system) and went exploring furthur into the Afghan hill country. Nothing like 20+ hours of driving…

Mountains of Textiles and Mixed Feelings

Turquoise Mountain Foundation Compound Kabul, Afghanistan 7:45 a.m Well, my heart is a jumble of mixed emotions these days. On the one hand, I feel turned slightly inside out by the whole experience of being here in Kabul, and being at the end of this road trip I’m feeling my desire to be home again, in…

The Panjshir Valley, & an ancient Buddhist stupa

Turquoise Mountain Foundation Compound Kabul, Afghanistan 9:04 a.m. sorry–this is a long post! Yesterday we launched on an epic adventure far from Kabul’s center of gravity and dove deep into the serious mountains of northeastern Afghanistan. We’d been looking forward since last week to our planned day trip to the Panjshir, but I had no clue…

Istalif: Into the foothills of the Hindu Kush

Turquoise Mountain Foundation Compound Kabul Afghanistan 11:06 p.m. Well, today was a fantastic trip out of Kabul, at last. We piled ten of us from Turquoise Mountain Foundation into a mini-van and rollicked across the fertile Shomali plains north of Kabul for the roughly hour and a half drive up to the town of Istalif, in…

Afghan Women of Hope

Turquoise Mountain Foundation Compound Kabul Afghanistan 8:25 p.m. Today we spent the whole day on our very own unsupervised outing. We called Zuhaak, one of the international- and expat-friendly car services here in Kabul, and arranged for one of their fixed-rate (200 Afghanis, or $4 US) rides across town to visit with a woman running a…

Shopping in a War Zone

Turquoise Mountain Foundation Compound Kabul Afghanistan 6:58 a.m. A quiet dawn here in the compound. The sun is back after a day or two of rain—somehow the cold here seeps quickly into one’s bones, even now that it’s already well into springtime. I hear the winters here are harsh, partly because with the little woodstoves often…

Landing in Kabul

Turquoise Mountain Foundation Compound Kabul Afghanistan 6:30 a.m. OK, a few too many thoughts rollicking around my noggin as I awaken here on my first morning in Afghanistan. In no particular order: First, the obvious: we arrived safely on the Afghan national airline, Ariana (a/k/a “Scariana”), no worries. All is well.