Thursday, February 23, 2006

Tidbits I Learned Today

I can't believe that a week from tomorrow, I'll be on my way to Kabul. I've completed my shopping of finding long, shapeless shirts and jeans. I may throw in a long skirt - we'll see how the packing goes.

I've also picked up a Polaroid camera (I forgot how much fun they are) - the idea being that I can give an instant photo as a "gift." My digital and standard 35mm (for black and white) are making the trip, too. I still need to pick up some postcards - but the ones I've seen of Florida contain people in bathing suits and I don't think that would fly well over there!

My friend Rob was in Germany attending a travel trade show a few weeks back and Afghanistan had a display - to promote tourism into the country. My friend picked me up a brochure (which was in German). He described the cover of the brochure, "There's a beat up looking bus loaded with people inside and people sitting on top."

"Then there's a car with something rolled up sticking out of the trunk."

"The country is 100% Muslim."

"Following Sept. 11, 2001, the Taliban and United States entered into a conflict."

He reckoned they were reaching for anything to promote tourism into the country. Can't wait to see the brochure and the real thing!

Sunday, February 19, 2006

The Unmentionables and More

Two weeks from day I will be in Kabul. I can't believe it's almost here. There are so many little loose ends to tie.

The biggest stressor continues to be "what to wear." From the emails being shared with everyone, this seems to be the common concern. One participant has been sharing emails from a previous trip participant and her most important tip has been, "cover your crotch!" She also assured not to worry about what to wear, just remember that the area between the waist and knee is considered underwear and showing that in Afghanistan is not respectful.

I've found very large shirts that reach the top of my knees, I feel a little better. I'm now concerned whether I snore while I sleep...

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Chew and Brush on This

As I've written before, I'm stressing out about what type of head-wear to adorn in Kabul. So, I found a website called and ordered a head piece. It arrived today (quickly, I may add) and included with the package was a little bonus (I LOVE bonuses) - a traditional natural toothbrush. It's basically a root of a tree known in Arabic as "Arak." To use, peel back the bark about 1/2 inch, lightly chew the end until bristle-like ends appear and brush horizontally. The website has some pretty cool stuff: