I am currently conducting research for my next book about our years in Pakistan. I came across this little piece I wrote for fun a few years ago and I want to share it with you.
Adventures in Pakistan
The heat, the dust, and the crows… These were some of the negatives I heard about Islamabad Pakistan before arriving there in the early 1990s. But, shocking as it may seem, there turned out to be much to love about this city that sits at the base of the Karakorum Mountain Range in northeastern Pakistan. It is laid out with broad streets and treed boulevards. Geometric Islamic architecture is juxtaposed with loud, vibrant, colourful markets and shalwar kameez clad men sipping tea from china cups everywhere you look.
The weather varies between the damp chills of the winter and intense heat in mid-summer but much of the year is warm and sunny encouraging long walks to observe the gorgeous gardens filled with undulating beds of brilliant flowers.
We found a spacious home to rent with a driveway that served as a bridge over a sunken yard, an interior bridge leading from the living room to the dining room (overlooking a sunny glassed-in sitting room) and a Romeo and Juliet balcony off the master bedroom.
Because my husband worked for the UN we didn’t live in a protected compound but rather in a local neighborhood on Park Road. We had to take care of our own protection. Being totally new to this ex-pat gig, we ended up hiring a burly young Pashtun who was a carry-boy at the local market. His name was Mirabasa and, little did we know how the murder that ensued would affect our lives. But I will start at the beginning…